Here I am – still in the hospital. The doctors think that the chemo is making me have a tougher than normal recovery. I’m not sure what it is, but hopefully it will resolve quickly. I have been sleeping a lot since last night. Hopefully that is a good sign. My pain level has been worse today but I think that’s to be expected with oral meds and me sleeping so much.
I’ve had some rough times since I blogged last. I had been doing pretty well and even got off the pain pump. Sunday evening was a highlight. The nurses took off my anti-nausea patch from behind my ear that day and guess what? I got nauseous. I had my mom, my sister and my closest friend here at the hospital and let’s just say we’ve bonded at a whole new level. I was nauseous enough to have a bucket right next to me and the nurses were working hard to make me feel better. My IV “expired” on Sunday so we accessed my port for meds. They had been giving me Benedryl through the IV but it hurt so badly we switched to oral. Once they accessed my port I thought I could just take it there since I had it for so many chemo treatments. Apparently they had been diluting it for chemo and when they gave it to me here, it was just a straight dose. Since the port delivers meds almost directly into my heart, there is usually a taste or smell that goes with them. For me it’s usually a smell. Not that night. The taste came up from the back of my throat and it was horrible. I shot up in my bed and started a coughing/choking fit like I’ve never experienced. There was a lot of thick flem way down in there because I’ve had such shallow breaths it hasn’t cleaned it out. Before I knew what was happening, I was upright and coughing for all I was worth. And it never occurred to me to hold my stitches. I don’t think I’ve ever been in so much pain. My face was covered by tears almost immediately. After that bout was over, the nurse gave me a blanket to wrap my chest and hold tightly in case anything else happened or if I threw up. By this time, I couldn’t let go of my chest because it just felt like everything would fall out if I did. Then the puking started. My digestive system must have been shut down since before surgery because I have no idea how I had so much food to throw up. It was ugly. Tears, pain and puking pretty much all night. They hooked my pain pump back up because I couldn’t keep any meds down and immediately gave me several things through it. At least one of them knocked me out and I have never been so thankful for being unconscious. I was still throwing up in the morning though and my oncologist ordered another anti-nausea patch in addition to 2-3 other anti nausea meds so I’m feeling better.
This morning I woke up in a lot of pain again so I had to hit the pain pump a couple times to make it through until the other meds could kick in.
My blood pressure is still low, we’d like to get that up but I don’t think it’s horrible. I hover around 100 over 50. I feel light headed and/or dizzy which keeps me from walking as much as I’d like but I did walk around the nurses station this morning and did pretty well so that’s something. My itchiness seems to have stopped – as soon as I woke up from surgery I was itching everywhere and the nurses had to life me up to itch my back in the recovery room. It has persisted all week but I think is finally getting there. I am eating very small amounts of food – but at least it is staying down. I can’t get the oral pain meds without food so they’re kind of bribing me to eat.
Mom has stayed with me the past two nights which is good. Eric is going to come visit after work tonight. My room has a weird thermostat and sometimes it is crazy hot and sometimes it is super cold. I’ve been keeping the door open more because I think that keeps the temperature more consistent. A perk to doing that is also that I get to hear the baby music whenever a newborn arrives. It’s very cute. I still have a hard time focusing enough to type but I think it’s getting better. It certainly takes a lot longer time to type than it used to. The kids are hanging in there but I know it’s hard on them to have me gone for so long. I had thought I would be doing pretty well by now, but I guess it just takes however long it takes.
I only have one spot on my chest that is REALLY sore and that is up along the sternum on that side. Apparently there is an incision right there for surgery and I’m not sure if there’s a drain there. I can tell for sure there is a drain on the underside which doesn’t feel great, but not as bad as the sternum. They saved all of my skin so right now I have extra skin until they fill the implants. I do look like I have little bitty breasts where the implants are and everything is kind of lumpy bumpy until they get filled as well. I think he starts the fills two weeks out. My drains are not super comfortable, but they are stitched in so they are pretty secure. The output has gone way down and it definitely getting lighter in color. I am so exhausted and get that way sooo fast. Going to the bathroom makes me need a nap. Literally. It also takes me forever to pee since the catheter was in for a couple days. Like I’ve forgotten how that works. My pee is back to a normal color at least – they inject so much dye before and during surgery which is blue and we all know what happens when yellow and blue mix. My lymph incision is getting pretty sore – It’s right under my armpit so it gets rubbed/brushed a lot. Okay, it is nap time. I can’t even keep my eyes open while I’m typing.