Monday, December 8, 2014

Well... THAT happened.

Hello, I'm back!  I'm still in bed but starting to return to the land of the living.  Sorry for all the texts and emails etc I have not returned, please accept my thanks for your love and support!  I will soon be back to bugging you and blabbing on and on again.  That's a promise.

Sooo.... just for the record, I feel justified in having dreaded this thyroid surgery so much, it was certainly worth it. LOL  Does that make sense?  I may still be under the influence of some lovely prescription narcotics so writing could be sketchy..... ;-)  It was deserving of the dreading, is what I am trying to say. 

Just wanted to post a very quick synopsis of what happened in Toronto and since.  

First some great news - this morning Claire's Dad took her for her xrays for her broken ankle and YAY she can ditch the crutches and put weight on the ankle! One more week of air boot cast then a week or so of tensor bandage but overall: relief of the crutches!  

The girls' play went off without a hitch over the latter part of last week.  I am told each performance of Lion, Witch and Wardrobe presented by the Kids in the Meaford Hall group was fantastic and very fun.  Claire and Cassie the "wood nymphs" were chauffeured to and fro by Baba and GeeGee and ate and napped in between and had a blast!  I can't wait to see the dvd.  Thanks to all who attended and helped the girls enjoy their time onstage so much. :-)

As for my sorry ass, I can answer a few common questions I seem to be getting, just in quick point form, then I will be back to napping.  Major sleeping these days holy, I am so completely pooped.

  • Tues. aft we saw medical oncologist for the clinical trial consult, everything still on track to go as planned, next Pacmen treatment for Melanoma is Jan. 19, 2015.  And no, unfortunately the pacmen won't go after any thyroid cancer cells possibly left behind, it is specific to melanoma only, which is why the surgeon worked so hard to remove as much thyroid area as possible so that hopefully I can avoid iodine radiation treatment which could affect my trial drug treatment schedule. Med. Onc. and Thyroid Surgeon working closely together - thankfully!
  • Surgery was Wed. a.m. first thing, I spoke with surgeon before going under - I think the part I hate the worst about surgery is having to climb onto the cold operating table myself and lie there while they talk to each other and hook stuff up to me knowing that I am about to have who knows what happen while I am asleep.  It is literally terrifying.
  • Surgery took 4+ hours, ended up being far more extensive than originally thought, and I now have 32 (yep, Mom counted) staples circling my throat.  Dr. Higgins told Scott that he took as much as he could so as to try to avoid having another surgery.  I have a drain in the incision as well, but it is working well so hopefully my homecare nurse can remove it tomorrow.
  • Total thyroidectomy, and central and right node dissections as well, plus extensive work on the left side, in fact the left is worse for pain and swelling so I am looking forward to reading the surgery report and pathology reports to see what happened??  Also he took two of four of my parathyroid? which I am told is crucial to calcium levels so I am being  heavily supplemented and monitored for calcium. 
  • Have another fistful of prescriptions, major calcium supplements to take 3x daily for a month, plus the thyroid hormone replacement for the rest of my life.  
  • Night in the TEGH semi-private was better than the night in Sunnybrook short stay unit, the nursing staff was far better than I had feared they would be after the dismal pre-op appt.
  • Post-op recovery not as great as last time, very heavy chest and lots of coughing even still today, which hurts. Nausea too, darn no purple tarantula this time? 
  • Long story short we got home around 8pm Thursday, major traffic jams longest day ever but got home phew... and sadly Scott had to quickly pack up and head to work back downtown Toronto for Friday morning rushhour! :-(  Poor guy - don't know how he handled it all but he was amazing.  Thank you Scott!  <3
  • Everything at home has been great too, the Warden mothered us all over the weekend while I primarily sleep, she has gone home now and a new Warden is coming, Iris, the girls' other Grandma, to help taxi, feed, and shuffle my adorable and busy offspring. Thanks in advance Gramma - I'm staying downstairs!! ;-)
  • I am able to drink, cool liquids especially yummy, protein shakes and chicken broth with the odd coffee for good measure.  I can eat, but chewing and swallowing meat is a terrible feat right now so screw it, handy I'm not hungry anyway! It's hard to open my jaw much anyway and I still have a tonne of swelling on my left side so it's fairly painful. 
  • Pain is better than I thought it would be, it is manageable which is good.. and I did figure out how to wash my hair and brush teeth this morning - nothing like a Monday morning to get you moving. I cannot get my incision wet so thankful for the handheld showers we have plus all my practice after surgery in May.
  • And the incision.... yes... it is large. It is uncovered and wide open for viewing, you can't miss it, and I think it is totally GROSS. Frankenstein jokes abound LOL  and its OK, I don't mind.  The girls aren't afraid of it so that is my main concern, I freaked out when I first saw it but I am assured it will heal well and scar should be minimal.  It is disgusting, I can say it.  
  • I have not had much company and honestly I just can't right now, it's too tiring and painful. AND GROSS! Kids Grandmas and nurse is all I can handle, especially 'til the drain comes out. But I am feeling better every day so should be more mobile faster than the May ordeal.  
  • Post-surgery appointment is this Thursday, hoping at least some staples can come out then?  But will see.  
OK think that covers it.. thank you again for your wave of support.. I need it, and I appreciate it without measure.  xoxo

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