It is more important to know where you are going, than how long it takes to get there.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Down The Drain...

Warning: If you get squeamish reading about medical stuff that involves body liquids, you might want to skip the next paragraph.

I mentioned drains a couple of times. This is what I know and remember...Drains are put in after surgery to remove excess fluid that builds up under the armpit by the lymph nodes, but only on the operated side. (One side = one drain. Two sides = two drains.) The surgeon connects the drains during surgery, and they stick out of under the armpits. The drain is a long, clear, rubbery, 3 foot long tube with a clear football shaped ball at the end to collect fluid. The ball is about the size of the pump on a blood pressure cuff. The drains remain in until the fluid production ceases, which can be as long as 10 days. Yes, I will be walking around with tubes hanging out of my armpits, under my baggy clothes. I only hope that it is cool weather. Twice a day I will empty the fluid into a measuring cup, write down the amount of fluid in a journal, and then flush it down the toilet. The fluid starts our pink because it might have a tiny amount of blood. Dr. T. Best told me that it only takes a tiny drop of blood to made the fluid pink. By the end, the fluid turns yellowish. Isn't this lovely?! My friend, Nurse O. Canada said that she will help me with the drains, and I am going to hold her to it! Yuck! Gross!

Yesterday I said something weird to Molly. She has terrible asthma right now, so I told her, "Take your inhaler so we can control your cancer." What the heck?! I am such a knucklehead. I quickly corrected myself. I think that she is having the toughest time of all of us with the cancer, oops breast cancer, and that her asthma might be triggered by the stress. (Stress has triggered my asthma at times too.)

Today I got pink spikey hair! I really like it, although I look like an aging rocker. The pink doesn't totally stand out and somewhat blends with my normal, reddish hair, unless you look closely in the light. It's subtle, just like me! Riley thinks it's cool because some of her friends told her that if her mom gets pink hair, she will have the coolest mom in Manchester. Molly is not too keen on it. She asked me today how long it will take to grow back. She might have a tough time with this bald thing in a few months. I will have Riley take a picture of my hair and post it later this week. Thank goodness she is taking photography in school this semester and becoming proficient in Photoshop! She said that she can make me look better than ever!

I left off some stories of plastic surgeon, Dr. Chief, that Chubba thinks I should share... When Dr. Chief first came into the examining room and sat down, he said, "Tell me your story." I responded, "What do you want me to tell you?" He said, "Just tell me your story." Soooooooo, I started my story with, "I was born a poor bl-" pause, he finished the sentence, "black child....Steve Martin." I replied, "Then you know the story." It was nice to know that Dr. Chief had a sense of humor, and that he saw the Steve Marin movie. He said one other thing that greatly impressed me; he referred to his assistant- (not sure if she is even a nurse) as "my associate." By calling her his associate, he put her on equal footing. Boy, talk about checking your ego at the door!

Tomorrow I have day surgery to remove a chunk of my right breast. Dr. T. Best is looking for any sign of microscopic cancer cells. The surgery is at 12:45 p.m., but I have to be there at 7:30a.m.. What am I going to do for 5 hours before surgery? I know I have to get drugged up, but for 5 hours! I guess I'll start a new book or knit. The surgery will only take about an hour. I will recoup for a couple of hours, and then go home. The information sheet in my cancer binder states that it takes 7-10 days to get the results from the biopsy. I am guessing that Dr. T. Best has some power and will speed up that process. If it comes back negative, then May 18 stands as the surgery date. If is comes back positive, then I'm not sure if the date will change or we can stay on schedule.

Whacky thought for the day...
I was thinking of writing on my right breast, "Biopsy me!" so they get he correct side.


  1. God Bless you Keval. I'll be praying for you tomorrow. Waiting to see that photo and happy to help with the drains too or anything else. Please shout!

  2. Hey Keval,
    Hope you are feeling okay after today's procedure. Can't wait to see the pink spikes.

  3. Thinking of you and wondering if I can drop off something pretty and fragrant. I am not sure if this is okay - but wanted to check first.