Wednesday, 13 February 2013

The big cut part II- Mastectomy

It's 8:00 on Wednesday morning and I'm writing this from my hospital bed. It's been 14 hours since my Mastectomy and I'm feeling really good.

My surgeon has been to see me and said he was very happy with the surgery and said that everything was as good as they expected. I had three lumps removed from my breast and three lymph nodes removed from under my arm.

I arrived at the hospital at 1:30 yesterday and was taken to my room (room number 22 which is my birthday, my sisters birthday, my husbands birthday, and my nephews birthday, so I was pretty happy). I was third on the operating list so waited in my room with my husband and parents until they took me up for surgery just after 4pm. My lovely surgeon came in and saw me before taking me into the theatre. I remember singing Bob Marley songs to myself and that's about all I remember before waking in recovery.

I was extremely drowsy in recovery and couldn't keep my eyes open even though I tried. Once I returned to my room my husband and parents were waiting for me. Shortly after my sister and brother (and 4 week old nephew) arrived. I was still super drowsy but felt pretty good. I was wearing a stretchy wrap around tube top type contraption (which I still have on) which is surprisingly comfortable and feels just like a corset. I wouldn't mind one to take home even. My chest and arm were a little sore but not as bad as I expected. I kept dozing off for a few minutes at a time while talking with everyone and when visiting hours finished at 8pm my family all left but my husband was allowed to stay till 10pm. I slept for most of that time and when I was awake my husband read me all the text messages, Facebook messages and wall posts I was receiving. I couldn't believe how many people had taken the time to send me their well wishes, including people I haven't seen or really heard from in over 10 years. I had been hesitant to post on Facebook about my cancer. It's not like you can just say 'hey everyone, I have cancer!' without seeming like I was trying to get attention, but at the same time I did want people to know. Not just for me but for them too, to know that you can be 27 years old with no family history and still be diagnosed with cancer. In the end I shared the below image from my Instagram #mastectomytomorrow #fckcancer which did the trick.

The anaesthetic didn't fully wear off until about midnight and then I had a chance to reply to some of the messages of support myself. I was also able to use my left arm quite a lot which I hadn't expected. Throughout the night I managed to sleep in 45-60 min intervals and wasn't in too much pain. I made sure that as soon as I started to feel just a little sore I would ask the nurses for pain medication so it never really escalated. The staff have all been absolutely wonderful. I even had a nurse shed a tear for me when I was telling her about what my husband and I have been through over the years. It's so comforting to have real, human, caring nurses and doctors, not just cold people simply doing their job.

It's now 10am. My husband has just left to pick up little birdie (who I can't wait to see), I've had breakfast, washed my face and body (just with a cloth), have put on my own pajamas, and am feeling rather great. I've had a bit of a look at my chest but there is a massive bandage covering my wound so there's not much to see, just a long gap where my boob was really. I did feel a bit nauseous when I first got up to go to the bathroom this morning but was given an injection straight away so didn't end up being sick.

Now it's time for a rest I think before my visitors arrive, which will mainly be family today. I should be in for 3 days so I'm sure I will post again soon.


  1. Marisa, you are such a beautiful writer and an amazing person to maintain your sense of humour and compassion for others at this time.
    Bonnie B.

    1. Thank you so much Bonnie, that means a lot coming from you xx