Monday, August 31, 2009


At this time last year, I couldn't push myself up in bed, drive or lift anything heavier than a loaf of bread. I was one week out of a bilateral mastectomy and trying to get my kids ready for school.

Jackie started school today, much to my mixed feelings of sadness and happiness for her. She was very excited about going to preschool full-time this year. She had a wonderful day today. And instead of answering with her typical "nothing!" when we ask what she did, she simply told us she had a great day. She's growing up at an amazing speed.

Steffie begins 7th grade tomorrow. This year will be one of her busiest since she'll be confirmed this year. Studies will be harder and she'll have exams in every class. Luckily, her classes are very small with 15 kids each. That's a bonus. If I have to pay for private education then the personal attention makes it worth the money. She isn't excited, maybe a little but I think she's ready to go back to school. Last year was a blur for her and a painful learning experience with a sick mother. Here's hoping and praying this year is 1,000 times better than last year...for all of us.

back to my reflections...

I was doped up on hydrocodone at this time. Do you realize I couldn't drive for most of the month of August due to the pain from my lumpectomy. I was out of commission for so long. I think I went almost 3 months without driving a car. Between the painkillers and soreness, I needed a chauffeur - enter Bill :) I remember the complete pain of trying to turn a steering wheel to move the car for him at the gas station. And then, it's like a switch was clicked. I went to get Jackie from school one day just on a whim. It was painful to drive but not as much. It's truly amazing when I think of the major impact of BC on our lives. It literally took Mommy out of the works for months on end. And that's just the surgery.

I do recall everyone's hysteria (and it really was) over my taking pain pills. Other than my Mom (who had a single mastectomy) - no one knows the pain associated with having your nerve endings ripped out and your boobs basically cut off. Everyone thought I would get addicted to the painkillers except my oncologist who knows I have a good head on my shoulders. I went off the painkillers about a week before starting chemo October 1st. Big mistake since putting in my mediport took a literal act of God and the patience of the Saints. Whiplash was awful.

I still haven't finished my reconstruction. I was thinking about that today. I need to call my plastic surgeon to schedule a consult in late October. But you know? I don't feel like even talking to my doctors. I'm happy with them not poking me. I'm happy to not have to drive for rads every day. My blood is my own :) I'm taking my pills like a good girl and taking care of me.

One year makes all the difference and no difference at all.

I think my body's trying to tell me I'm tired because I'm now wearing Bill's glasses to write this post.

Night all!


Beth said...

a whole year... wow. I also have a child entering grade 7 this year, as I just get over the effects of my last chemo. It's been a tough summer, certainly not the way we plan to spend time with our kids. Thanks for continuing to share how you're doing.

And I love the candle!!

Katie said...

What strength it takes to be a mom undergoing such an awful thing as cancer. I wanted to share a heart-felt video called “Stand Up To Cancer”—> . This video highlights the importance of managing your cancer treatment and avoiding infection. Please watch and share with all your loved ones.

Best of wishes,