Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year!

At the end of the year, many people reflect back over the last year. I feel like I'm expected to say that 2011 was the worst year of my life. Jake was diagnosed with thyroid disease and epilepsy. He's only 6 years old. Bill had a heart attack at 42! I had cancer! It was a hard year. But it was a good year too. Cassidy learned to walk and talk. We had lots of fun day trips and vacations. I learned that all my friends are really great friends who stood by me during tough times. Bill and I know that we got the worst of "for better or worse" out of the way. We survived and our relationship is stronger than ever.

I think 2012 will be an interesting year. My perspective on life has changed. I'm going back to work on Tuesday and I don't want to go. Life is too short. There is too much fun and laughs to have. I don't want to spend another minute toiling away in my cube and being stressed out, so some corporation can profit. But I love our lifestyle and our home and we need my salary to maintain that. We'll see what happens. I predict 2012 is going to be a fun year.

My 2011 photo scrapbook is done and can be viewed here:

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Lovely Christmas

We had a very nice Christmas!  Relaxed and lovely :-)  It began with Christmas Eve at my parents. Cassidy was friendly and played with the Magnadoodle with Aunt Barbara and pretended that she didn't want my Gram to tickle her (she did want to be tickled).
She was semi-interested in opening gifts.  I don't think she understood something was in the box but she enjoyed it a lot once I put it all together!

Santa came that night with nice surprises for us all.

Well, Jake looks bored in all these pictures but he was excited later when we gave him his new stuffed reindeer!  Once we got dressed we headed to Bill's mom's house. Cassidy loved playing with all her cousins toys. There are a LOT of toys at that house.
As Bill posted on Facebook, "28 hours, 300 miles in the car, 3 Christmas get togethers...". I won't lie, it was a long day. It's a lot of sitting in the car so Cassidy was up late that night after too much napping during the day. But it was fun. Bill and I rocked out on the way home to I Can See Clearly Now by Johnny Nash (It's a bright sunshiny day!)!

She was very serious about her vacuuming.

I've already created a box of old toys to donate and need to get going to taking down all the Christmas decorations. One more week off of work and lots to get done!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas

I think I'm more excited than Cassidy that Santa is coming tonight! At 20 months old, she doesn't really get it. Though we did let her open a gift from someone Bill works with last night, after she carried the bag around saying "present, present, present" and tried to open all the others under the tree. Thankfully she was distracted pretty easily "Hey it's supper time!"
Food always works as a good distraction with her.

Speaking of, she's eating her pre-party snack right now
Soon we'll be getting in our party dresses, setting out cookies for Santa and sprinkling reindeer food in the driveway (oatmeal and glitter - Thank You daycare!).  I love the magic of Christmas and its so much more magical with Cassidy in our lives!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Post - Operative doctors appointment update

I had my post-op visit with the plastic surgeon today.  She said there is some swelling, which is to be expected and in 2 to 3 weeks things will look more like they are going to look in the future.  She said they will drop down a little bit (basically I look like I have a permanent push-up bra on!). She thinks they are going to look great!

There's one spot that I thought were stitches poking out and she said yes, they are stitches but they'll dissolve. In the same area there's a red splotchy area which landed me with five more days of antibiotics. She said it's probably nothing to worry about but better safe than sorry.

She agreed with me that darn righty is again leaning towards my armpit. She explained that the stitches they put in my muscles to hold righty more centered are permanent stitches so they should hold. As another precaution, my lifting restriction (no more than ten pounds) will remain until January 10th!  Also, while I don't have to wear the ugly Velcro bra and can wear one of my own, she wants me to pad under my right armpit to push my breast more towards the middle and take the pressure off those stitches so they can heal. She thinks once everything droops a little I'll look more even.

Some good news, starting next week I can do low impact workouts and its okay to sleep on my side (yahoo!).  I don't have to go back for two months so I have my list of instructions until then (lifting restrictions, massage instructions etc).  I feel like I have one more step done. One more step back to my normal life!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

New implants make noises

On Thursday when I took off my super fashionable Velcro bra to shower, I noticed when I moved, I heard noises.  The only way to describe these noises is... my boobs are farting. My implants are silicone gel so its not them making noise. I assume the noises are from fluid building up around them (IE swelling). I did confirm with a girlfriend that hers made noises at first too. At least I know I'm not crazy.

I'm feeling better. I understand now why the surgeon said this time I'd really have to remember not to lift things. I feel well enough that Cassidy throwing herself at me doesn't phase me and I've reached for her quite a few times. It's important to remember though as I would like to avoid surgery for as long as possible so I want these implants to stay where they are and heal.

Recently I showed Cassidy how to see the picture on my camera after I take one. BIG mistake. She doesn't get that she has to sit still and let me take a picture before there is one to see. This morning I asked her if I could take her picture. Her response "yeah!". She pushed her chair over near the front door.

Sat down for about 15 seconds for me to take a photo and then raced over to me to look at it.  It's actually not too bad with only the blurry arm. I don't think she stayed still for even one second.  Then she sat on my lap wanting me to take her picture.  She's so funny. I just love her to pieces.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Exchange surgery yesterday

According to the plastic surgeon, yesterday’s surgery went well.  Bill and I got there a little late due to traffic. So I didn’t have to wait when I got there, in fact they had called my cell. I got into my johnny and the surgeons came by before the nurse had even covered me with my warm blanket. By the time they got the IV in I’d talked to anesthesia and Bill had been back with me for like 4 minutes and we were saying “see you later” and I was off to surgery early.

The anesthesiologist did a great job and I woke up in recover not nauseous at all. What a difference that makes. We were heading home by 2:30!

Last week we had decided on 450cc implants based on thinking there was 460cc’s in my expanders. During surgery they realized there was more than 460cc’s. We’d discussed if there was a question to go bigger, not smaller. So I have the biggest implants possible for my chest size – 500cc’s!  And even swollen they don’t seem too big so we’ll see. 

Last week we also discussed how my right boob had moved down and towards my armpit and was far from symmetrical. So I knew they were going to do a lot of deep tissue stitches to move righty back where she belongs. And that is what is pretty painful. If it wasn’t for that I’d just take Advil. My left side is a little sore but really feels fine. The right is very painful to move my arm or lift anything. So I’ll have longer than predicted lifting restrictions due to that but I’ll do whatever it takes for it to stay in place. I’m looking forward to not ever wearing a bra again!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Picture with Santa

Yesterday Bill and I went Christmas shopping. We did our Toys-R-Us run and we let Santa know what Cassidy wanted. My parents watched Cassidy while we shopped and then we all met at a restaurant for dinner. During which Cassidy was a total spaz and didn't eat a bit!

During our shopping we had purchased a really cute sweater dress for Cassidy to wear on Christmas.  Today, we thought we'd dress her up and go have her picture taken with Santa. We talked about it a bunch of times. She kept saying "yeah", she wanted to see Santa.  She probably did want to see him, but she didn't want to sit with him. She immediately got the big pouty lip and started crying! 

Our house is all decked out for Christmas!

Jake is got a bath yesterday. He's so soft!

The little reindeer has a scarf with pockets.
Not sure what she's looking for but she checks
the pockets regularly.

My Christmas shopping is all done!  I'm hoping to finish wrapping gifts, run some errands, clean the house and take Jake for a nail trim tomorrow. Oh yeah, and I have to work too.  Surgery on Tuesday so I want to get lots done so I can focus on healing the rest of the week. Busy time of year to be having surgery but new boobs will hopefully be a great Christmas gift!

Friday, December 9, 2011

You've got to trust a plastic surgeon

Yesterday we had our pre-surgical meeting with the plastic surgeon to discuss details for next weeks exchange surgery. I'm exchanging my coconut like tissue expander's for soft squishy implants.  We discussed the size I want to be which is,  the same as I was naturally or slightly bigger, no smaller (your welcome Bill).

I never thought I had big boobs. Yes, bigger than most of my family but they had small boobs and I figured I was normally sized. But in figuring out what size implants I need to get me back where I used to be I realized, I had big boobs for a person with a puny 13 inch chest.  My tissue expander's are actually larger than my body so I have significant side-boob which I can't wait to be gone!  We had to find implants that could fit on a 13 inch chest but would still be as big as I want. Enter the high profile implant which is specifically for thin women who want big boobs! 

We also discussed how they look now. The right one is not looking good. It sags down and off to my armpit. The doctor said she'd lift that one so there would be deeper stitches and more resting that side.  I think the left looks good.  Apparently the doctor is a perfectionist because she thinks near my cleavage there's a flat spot (?) so she's going to fix that too.

I think if you need to have someone build you new boobs a perfectionist is the way to go.

Finally we squeezed an implant and we were shocked.  When you read online about the new silicon gummy implants they are described as like a gummy bear.  Meaning you can cut it in half and nothing leaks, it's cohesive.  So I expected it to be, kind of firm feeling. It wasn't, it was SO soft. I can't wait to get those in me and get these awful things out! Now I'm excited.

The one piece of bad news is I have to go back to sleeping on my back for a month to 6 weeks :-(   Just thinking about it last night made me restless. I'll be picking up some Advil PM this weekend.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Kids grow up so fast

Today was my nephew's thirteenth birthday. He's a teenager! Time really does fly. I have so many memories of him younger that seem like a couple of years ago... How did so much time pass? 

When he was two and a half we all went to the town summer fair. My sister and I left our purses at her house and upon arriving her husband realized he didn't have his wallet. We sat on the grass and waited for him to go home and pick up some money. My sister took a picture of my nephew and I while we waited and I still have it framed in the hallway.  I've had that picture framed for ten years!

He is now as tall as his mom. I hope he had a great birthday and stays the good kid he is now.

Realizing how fast the years pass helps remind me to appreciate these toddler years with Cassidy.  She had fun at her cousin's birthday party today. Last night we practiced saying "Happy Birthday" but she clams up around people so she wouldn't say it. Though she did say it at home again tonight.  She sat next to him while he opened his gifts. She was really cute.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


I've been thinking a lot about stress lately, specifically what stress does to your body.  I met a group of women who have not only breast cancer in common, but also successful careers. And with most successful careers, comes a lot of stress.  Now, I'm not saying stress causes cancer but... does it maybe give it an environment in which to thrive?

Since I've returned to work, I've been trying very hard not to let myself get stressed. The truth is, what frustrates me most about my job are things I have no control over. I can only control the things I do and how I react.  I've done pretty well reducing my stress the last few weeks.

And yet, I sit here on a Thursday evening thinking... I really should work on that project this weekend. After vowing to myself a million times that I'm not going to work on my day off or the weekend. That I'm not going to stress about tight deadlines. Though this tight deadline is tight because of my upcoming surgery.  Is it more stressful to have this project hanging over my head and have to rush to finish it Monday? Or is it less stressful just to spend 2 hours on it and have it done with? I don't think there's an easy answer.