Wow. This has been one incredible ride. I did shake a finger at my surgeon to let him know this is NOT an easier recovery than chemo and radiation. I am even struggling with typing this blog with the oxygen monitor on my finger. I didn't have that with the other treatments. I have yet to look in the mirror. I just can't get myself to do it. Call it denial but I just don't want to see how bad it is. I am dreading going home because I just know I will catch a glimpse of my face as I walk by one of the many mirrors in our house.
I definitely could not have gotten to this point without my family, friends and prayer warriors. Since day one of surgery each of you have come through for me to help me get through this ordeal. I felt each and every one of your prayers on Thursday, the day of surgery. I was able to contain my fear for most of the pre-op process. We were so thankful to have my sister and brother-in-low show their beautiful faces before I went into the OR. Pastor Dave, so thankful for your visit and prayers that morning. It brought much comfort and peace. I don't know who had it harder..me or Jason. I am sure waiting for me to come out of surgery was agonizing for Jason. I just hard a short little nap.
Waking up from surgery was not as scarey as I thought it would be. I was alone and had no family members nearby, but felt at peace. Special thanks to the prayer chain. And it did not take me long to realize I still had my eye. I had not lost my eye! It was so unbelievable I had to poke around at it for awhile to make sue I wasn't dreaming. Soon I learned how swollen my face was so the poking quickly stopped. I wasn't awake for every long. In fact the first few days are a blur. I couldn't even tell you what happened. I just remember telling Jason to go home at 10:00 am because it was so late in the day and he had been there way too long. The next day I couldn't believe he didn't stay with me for very long in the day. I do remember Jason telling me the good news. My surgeon believes the cancer is gone. The final pathology report does need to come back so I will not hold my breath until I get that report. I think we have all learned that lesson one too many times.
My biggest battles have been the trache and my leg. Having a trache is not fun. I struggled with breathing and keeping the airway clear from mucus. I hope I never have to another one again. I was so thankful when it came out. The hole is still there and if I want to talk or cough I have to plug the hole with my fingers. The hole should be closed in a couple of days.
My leg hurts like crazy. Taking out a bone is more painful than I thought it would be. I have to wear a big boot to protect it as well as the skin graph they used to repair my leg. I will be walking with a walker for awhile until I can bear weight on that leg. It will be interesting getting up and down the stairs at home. Jason will be getting quite the workout carrying me up and down the stairs. So he may benefit from this after all.
I will never forget waking up late one night and looking over seeing my Dad slumped over in a chair by my bedside. How much that meant to me! My family has made sure I had plenty of visitors to be by my side. Jason deserves a vacation after juggling work, being at the hospital and spending time the girls. And even though I didn't see them very much,I know my-in laws were behind the scenes making sure there was help whenever and wherever needed.
I still have a lot of healing to do in my face and leg. It will take many weeks until I feel like normal again. I will be getting teeth implants down the road. Luckily, that does not include a prosthetic eye. But I want you all to know how amazed the doctors and nurses have been with my recovery so far. I know it is because all of your prayers!!!
So I will be going home either today or tomorrow. I am looking forward to sleeping in my own bed again. I can't say I am looking forward to eating all of the wonderful meals being prepared for my family because I simply can't eat right now. I will be going home with a feeding tube in my nose. And I can't say you will be seeing me very much as I am sure I will be hiding out in my house afraid to show my face. Please keep the prayers coming. They are working. You have witnessed a miracle take place before your eyes. I am confident in that. Thank you GOD!!! He is good.
All my love,
PS - I was just visited by the surgeon, Pathology confirmed everything he found in surgery. So there are no new surprises and no new cancer that he wasn't aware of. So it is gone! Let's hope it stays that way!