Yesterday, I put on a dress and thought, “Hey, I look pretty good.” I looked symmetrical, for one and it’s been awhile since I could say that. I did not connect the dots of facts in my brain that would have told me, “Hey, you’re not supposed to be symmetrical. One of your boobs is supposed to be smaller than the other. Don’t you remember complaining about that in your blog?”

Fortunately, I have a surgeon who noticed today when I was in for my post-op appointment. I was swollen with fluid, a combination of blood and serous fluid. The fluid was under my skin, surrounding the tissue expander that was inserted last week. I learned that this is a concern as is the ischemic tissue (skin that isn’t getting enough blood flow). As you may recall, I had this issue with the mastectomy, but this was much less than before and hey, they kept telling me how good everything looked after the mastectomy. Apparently, this was not supposed to happen again with the last surgery. In fact, Dr. Welk uttered the words I so did not want to hear, “I’ve never seen this before.” My skin is not happy. My doctor is not happy. I am not happy.

This is not a life threatening situation but it does mean there’s a slim chance that I could lose a sizable portion of skin, need surgery to have it removed, and have to start the whole process over again with another tissue expander surgery. Dr. Welk says that it will probably be fine and I am scheduled to see him again on Tuesday of next week. When I talked to my friend, Jennie she offered to come to the appointment with me. I said, “Oh that’s okay, John will want to come.” Then she reminded me that John is going to be in Hungary next week. Good thing her brain is able to connect the dots for me and she is such a good friend to offer to go with me. She has some good experience helping out friends in medical settings, having helped at the birth of at least two babies. So I am relieved to not have to go alone.

To be honest, I was pretty sad and overwhelmed about this earlier today. I know in the larger scheme of things that things look good for me. But it’s been a long haul since May. I also need to lay off the cancer reading for awhile. I know it was part of my plan to do a lot of  cancer reading to get in touch with my grief but I think I’ve had enough for now. It’s like in my practice when moms start feeling really guilty, I tell them, “You have the rest of your life as a parent to feel guilty. Don’t use it up all now. Save some for later.” This usually gets a big laugh of relief. So I’m going to save some grief for later.

Lastly, I am relieved to have figured out a solution to my professional attire challenge for next week. Dr. Welk doesn’t want me to put extra pressure on my tissue so I need to go around bra-less until at least Thursday afternoon. Unfortunately, it is not yet sweater season. Fortunately, I have a chemise that can be used as full slip, given to me by my friend, Cheryl that I can wear under my dresses. Phew! Visible googly eyed effect crisis averted!