Sunday, September 5, 2010

Where's Godzilla When You Need Him?

I'm back and look! {proudly pointing to my throat} I have a neck again!!!  That big ole mess is finally out of there and I'm doing soooooo much better already.   The incision is healing up nicely and from the looks of it, there's not going to be much of a scar either.   There's still some swelling but even with that, it's so much thinner than it was when the thyroid was making me look like Mike Tyson.

My surgeon was great even tho it sounds like he had a tough time wrestling this monster out of my throat.  The damned thing was 14 x 6.5 x 4.5 cm.  That's almost 5 1/2 inches!  Gawd, no wonder I was strangling myself every time I moved my head or arms.  That was not a butterfly gland..........that was Mothra!!!   It was under the sternum so I was right about my collarbone poking into it like a spear.  Anyway, to get it out they had to strap my arms together behind my back and bend me like a backwards taco to push my chest up high enough to get in there.  I was sore and bruised from my jaw all the way down to my boobs but I don't care.  It was out and that's all that mattered!

There was a little problem with a floor nurse who thought she was a combination of HawthoRNe and House.  {sigh}  Spare me the attitude bitch.  She blew out the vein in my hand by using a port left from the arterial line they used in surgery instead of using the IV line for my first round of pain killers.  She didn't flush the line first and then she jabbed one syringe after another into it, shoving the plunger down so fast and hard that it was a blur.  In case you don't know,  morphine is really thick and even in an IV line it has to be administered very slowly to give it a chance to move thru the vein.  Otherwise it sits there like peanut butter.  It was bad enough that someone blew out the veins in my left wrist when they took out the arterial line there, but then the Marquis De Sade nurse really blew up the ones in my right hand.  OMG, it hurt worse than my throat which is not exactly what pain meds are supposed to do.  When the night nurse came on she took out the arterial port and took much better care of me.   By the time the day nurse came back with her attitude and her threats of "if you don't do what I say I'll make sure they don't let you go home today", I was awake enough to be pissed.  She actually got into an argument with my husband and stood over my bed to yell at him.  If I'd had the strength I would have reached up and punched her in the throat.  She finally sent a doctor in to settle the argument about whether or not I was under the care of a pulmonologist (just look on my chart.....he's down on the 7th floor if you want to talk to him) and I complained to the doctor about her, showed her my hand, and said I wanted out.  NOW.  Fortunately I was doing well enough that they let me go less than 24 hours after I got out of surgery.

{grinning} I can be such a bitch but I wasn't sleeping at all and I needed to be home where I could get some rest and I certainly didn't need the stress of a nurse from hell.  I had a little fever later on that night, but with Prince Vicodin at my side, I was able to sleep and start recovering a lot faster.   Bruce stayed home for a week to take care of me and made sure that I had lots of sherbet and ice water to help with the swelling.

It was the third day when I looked in the mirror and saw something that I hadn't seen in a very long time..........there was a sparkle and clarity in my eyes!  And my skin tone looks better too!   Even tho it's only been a few days on synthroid I'm doing really well with it.  Now if I can just convince my endo to keep me on the high side of normal, I'll be great.

Oh, I almost forgot to tell you about the pathology report.  Surprisingly the nodules all came back clear.  I wa so not expecting that since the nodules were all full of microcalcifications and that's what they had told me held about an 80% chance of cancer.  But they were clear and and the lymph node they removed was also benign.  But deep down in the tissue, they found a little lesion of papillary cancer.  I knew it was in there somewhere!  It was small enough that they couldn't do a conclusive test but with the benign lymph node, they pronounced me cancer free and I don't have to have radiation.  Yay!!!!!   You know that I want to go find every doctor who tried to blow me off and kick them in the er, um, knees.  If I hadn't kept fighting every inch of the way about this, they never would have found it before things turned really bad.  Yep, I'm a fighter and that makes me a survivor too!

It's been such a long, hard fight with this damned thyroid that I feel like a warrior at the end of a war......sitting in the battlefield and catching my breath before I get up and head back to the business of daily life.   But I can look down and still breathe, and I can lift my arms over my head and not strangle myself anymore.  The part Bruce likes best is that I don't snore anymore.  LOL!   There are still a lot of things that I need to deal with but at least the thyroid isn't one of them.  It's the biggest hurdle I've had to take medically and I know that things will get better now.  Being able to breathe is awesome!

Of course I can't just sit around doing nothing for three weeks while I wait for my incision to heal up enough to go play with sawdust and glue, so I've been doing some puttering.   I need lots of flower arrangements and potted plants for my Tennyson and that's something that I can do on a lap tray with some bits of flowers, leaves, pots and a hot glue gun.  I may have gotten a little carried away but here's what I did........a little bit of everything from tiny potted plants to hanging baskets, to an oriental carriage for a lawn ornament.

Then when I got bored with plants, I made a red checked table cloth, some potholders, a folded dish towel and a "tossed on the counter" dish towel for my best friend's Laurel.   She's doing the kitchen with that fabulous set of retro table, chairs and step stool all in red so these are perfect.  I made her leave me the table so I could get the table cloth positioned the way she wanted it to show off the chrome edges of the table under it.  I think I'll make her some cafe curtains to go with it tomorrow.

I'm still not up to writing much and I should be laying on the couch playing Bookworm on Game Lounge right now but I remembered that I hadn't updated my blog after the surgery.  So I'm going back to the couch now that y'all have the latest news. Thank you all for the prayers, positive thoughts and whispered spells for me.  I know that made a huge difference in how this all came out.