Saturday, 14 July 2012

Incremental Steps...Fundamental Changes...

Well, I'm so running behind with this.  I had my appointment with my surgeon back in June!  So much has happened at home since then that I just haven't had chance to update!  But here I am now. :-)

So after what can only be described as an epic journey down to London (2 and half hours driving and then an hour on the underground all executed on only 3 hours of sleep!), then an hour wait at the hospital, it all became too much!  While sitting in the waiting room, and seeing a number of ladies waiting for some sort of Breast Cancer news, whether it be the same reason I was there or waiting for results, I spotted a lady who was probably about early 40's with a teenage (I'd say14 or 15) boy, who I guessed was her son.  She went in before me. When she came out, I heard her say to the boy, "its positive, and I mean not a good positive".  Watching them after, leave the hospital, and her put her arms around him, a huge wave of emotion came over me and I just had to get out of there.  The last thing I wanted to do was be crying when I went into my appointment, what on earth would my surgeon think?..."Hmmm, she's not ready for ANY surgery, she's too emotionally unstable!"?   All I kept thinking was, "That could so easily be me with my son Dylan going through what they are going through now".  Thankfully, that won't happen.

After I had composed myself, I went back in to the building and waited for my name to be called.  I didn't have to wait too much longer.  My mum and I entered the surgeons room, and I felt like I was in the headmasters office back at school!  I don't know why!  They say knowledge is power, and boy is he knowledgeable! We talked about my BRCA result and BC and OC family history, and he seemed to just flow into a discussion regarding the options surrounding mastectomy and recon for which I was so grateful because I went there thinking I would have to persuade him to perform the operation.

The one thing I did feel I was trying to persuade him to do was to keep my nipples, he didn't seem too keen to do this because he would still have to keep some breast tissue to keep it alive.  He did explain the risks in percentages, lets just say since then,  and speaking to other women who have lost theirs, I have decided to go along with his suggestion.

He talked about Diep flap recon, but after examining me, he said there wasn't quite enough fat there to do both boobs.(Strangely I felt quite chuffed at this back handed compliment).  Then he talked about implants, which is what I was hoping for.  Then he threw a right spanner in the works by talking about a new procedure which he has pioneered...This involves putting an implant in for about 4 months before removing any breast tissue.  As the surgeon said "It does mean you will look like Jordan for a few months"  eeek not sure how I feel about that!

So, as he gave me so much to think about, he wants me to return in September to discuss further and hopefully set a date!  At the moment I am just taking each day at a time, taking in more information as I go, until I return to him.

Whichever way I go with regards to reconstruction, i know it will probably be a long drawn out process, which I will have to endure probably over a couple of years.  But as my lovely boyfriend, Andy, always quotes; "Incremental steps, fundamental changes"