Two Weeks …

Two weeks ago today I had my surgery. This last week has been HARD. πŸ™ I actually think this week was harder then then first … probably because my mind is clear from all the morphine/anesthetic.

My surgeon took my drain out on Wed and said I was healing beautifully … I went home feeling liberated and so happy to be drain free. I iced the area on and off and took Tylenol when I got home and I woke up the next day a little sore (which I expected from the drain removal) and luckily that soreness went away in about 48 hours.

I won’t tell you how gross it was to have the drain removed … just that it felt like someone was dragging a wet noodle across the inside of my chest. *shudder*

What has made me miserable is my skin. The skin around my armpit is SO SENSITIVE!! I can feel all my nerve endings firing and re-connecting so there’s lots of pins and needles but the worst part is the sensitive sore skin in my pit. Miserable. πŸ™

97a17baaab1111e2914122000a9f1439_7I have a little pillow that I put in between my arm and torso to help with chafing but I think wearing this breast binder 24 hrs a day plus all the nodes he removed from my armpit area have made me really sensitive.

So I’ve been laying around not moving which is probably not what’s good for me … but the skin in my armpit hurts so much that the only relief I get is if I lay perfectly still on the couch.

Fergus is JUST fine with all this laying around… in fact he often boxes me in on the couch making it impossible for me to get up. He’s the best nurse in the world. πŸ™‚

Anyone else have sensitive skin after their mastectomy? Any tricks/tips I should know about? Right now I’m spraying lydocaine on my skin and that helps temporarily but I am wondering if there’s something else I could be doing??


I also started to do my rehab exercises this week (which probably also explains the sore skin).

I have pretty good range of motion. I can do almost everything they ask in the little exercise booklet they gave me except for snow angels.

I can lift my right arm as high as my shoulder but that’s it … it’s so tight across my chest. Ugh. But I know I just have to keep at it and things will start to stretch out.

I started to feel a little better yesterday and today I feel OK enough to put on real clothes!! Woot I’m actually dressed and today I’m going to run a couple easy errands with Gerry. See how that goes.  πŸ™‚

I still get fatigued quite easily and have to nap/rest often … so because of that I am delaying opening the store until Monday April 29th. It will be a soft opening. Probably limited hours until I get all my energy back but hopefully by Monday I’ll be raring to go. πŸ™‚

tumblr_lww2hm7TYc1qdlabvo1_500Thanks to everyone who keeps sending me care packages … you gotta stop with all the chocolate!! Ha ha. I’m going to be as big as a whale if I eat all the treats you’ve sent me.

I get my pathology report on Friday. That will tell us everything we need to know about the cancer and what my future treatments are going to look like.

I want all of you to close your eyes for a second and think about how cute this magical unicorn is and how it’s healing happy superpowers will be with me on Friday. πŸ™‚


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20 Responses to Two Weeks …

  1. Renée says:

    Unicorn visualized sitting on your shoulder on Friday! That photo reminds me of the pictures you share of Fergus.

  2. DAISY says:

    Thinking of you Sarah – that unicorn brightened my day – sending bright thoughts your way! Daisy.

  3. danielle says:

    Thinking of you much. You are a strong and beautiful light. And that unicorn does look just like Fergus.

  4. Ariane says:

    Unicorn powers ahoy! I wish I had a suggestion for the soreness – I use tiger balm for everything, but I’m pretty sure that would feel terrible right now!

  5. Jenni Smith says:

    Much much magical unicorn healing to you, dear!

  6. Nicole says:

    wow that unicorn looks like fergus!! lol. if i send a card to your store, will it get to you soon? i was hoping to drop it by but wasn’t sure if there was a slot to put it in. xoxox

  7. Sue says:

    Hi, Sarah;
    Thank you again for sharing your story with us – I feel blessed to be learning all of this!
    I wonder if ice packs might help your sensitive skin? I had SO MUCH PAIN when nursing “my beautiful daughter,” but was determined not to stop doing it, so tried putting cubes of ice in a Ziploc bag, and then wrapping that in a damp cloth and then stuffed it in my nursing bra for 20 mins. after nursing – SUCH a relief!
    If you do try the ice, and it doesn’t help, you could always try a heating pad. But I’m thinking the sensitive skin is probably “inflamed,” so ‘cooling it down’ might help.
    Thinking of you!

  8. Eveline says:

    Before your surgery I sent you a link to a NYT article on sentinel node biopsy and lymphadenectomies leading to lymph edema and not being a good prognosticator of survival. I don’t know what your Stage is, tho, so it may not be applicable to you

    But as to the sensitivity, I had ovarian cancer and the fist sized circle of skin above where nodes were removed close to the surface in my groin was immediately after the surgery and still is today super sensitive. I don’t touch it nor may anyone else, even doctors. Nerves were damaged. They dont recover. But hopefully years from now you can complain about it. Me and my fat lymph edema leg and nerve damage, but hey, I’m alive to complain about it

  9. Esther says:

    Sorry to hear about the sensitivity. I don’t know what would help, unfortunately. Still thinking of you and sending energy – hope that unicorn does the trick!

  10. Rebecca says:

    I know it is hard especially since most of the good drugs have worn off lol. You will get your energy back and just keep plugging away on those exercises. I believe my friend also said that making the snow angels was not fun but, they will help in the long run. Gotta be able to raise your arms up for the next Prince concert. lol..

    Take care and keep us all posted on that report Friday. Will be sending you healing mojo aka energy.

  11. Joyce says:

    I just sent a prayer that will be heading your way.

  12. Denise says:

    That sensitivy will get better. Week 2 and 3 are the worst from my experience with Mastectomy. My incision was 10 inches long from middle of chest to around under arm as I had 14 lymph nodes removed. That was the worst part – the under arm. Take a pain pill…I’m serious. I didn’t need it Week #1 but when that arm stuff started, I had to give in.
    And PLEASE find a Lymphedema Specialist right away…you need to know the ins and outs and what to do to help avoid it even before any more treatment. It is essential. I lifted 3 bags of groceries with my “bad” arm and that’s all it took to bring Lymphedema to me. If you have to have chemo, chemo can exacerbate it as can radiation. But you really can’t wait that long. My breast cancer center made me attend a Lymphedema class before I got my drains out…my best, Denise

    • Sarah says:

      Thank you Denise!!
      I had 4 removed and my doctor feels confident that I won’t have any issues but I’m going to have a chat with the ladies at the Breast Health Center anyway. πŸ™‚

      • Denise says:

        Doctors like to say that and usually that is true, but my Lymphedema Specialist has had patients with no node involvement that have gotten Lymphedema after a Mastectomy. I know people who have had only one or two removed and still get it. So it is so important to learn how to avoid it – like wearing a compression sleeve on an airplane. So glad you are going to check on it! Healing prayers your way, Denise

  13. Lori deWet says:

    Hi Sarah,
    A big, ( gentle!) hug to you for tomorrow. I will be thinking positive thoughts for you. You will be on my mind as well as many, many other people’s minds. Hope you can feel all the collective warmth and support enveloping you in a big cozy love cocoon!!
    Xo Lori

  14. Denise says:

    I am always reading your blog, seeing your tweets and giggling at your fergus photos. Feel like I know you! Crazy? Perhaps. You have been in my thoughts and my little Carla’s (my mini wiener dog). Can’t wait to read more about your recovery, just amazing that you are sharing this crazy crappy cancer experience! AMAZING VEGAN SUPERSTAR!!!

  15. Connie says:

    thinking of you , uniting unicorns, and hoping your day went well today πŸ™‚

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