The fall semester is over. Grades are turned in and there was the usual gnashing of teeth, rending of garments, and marking in red. Some students pulled things together and amazed me and some - well, some just didn't, or they misread the syllabus, or, or, or. At any rate, it's done and in the record books at this point, which means it's time to get ready for the holidays, right?
Well . . .
As you know from this blog, the main reason the holidays are so discombobulated this year has to do with my introduction into the Pink Ribbon Club. That's kept me (and FryDaddy, as my personal chauffeur) hopping lately, with consultations and appointments galore. Let's see - among the things I've learned would be:
- I don't have a genetic predisposition towards cancer - it's just one of those things that could (and apparently, often does) happen. That's not nice, but it's good to know that I'm not at a high-risk for recurrence.
- Surgery is expected to be a "lumpectomy," although I don't actually have a lump. On the day of surgery, they'll insert teensy guide wires to tell the surgeon "start here!" and "stop here!" I'd think a felt-tip marker could do the same thing, but no. When I whined about this, FryDaddy reminded me that, yes, I have many accomplishments, but going to med school isn't one of them, so maybe (just maybe) I could hush up about this part. I hate that he's right.
- Surgery will be outpatient, which thrills me to no end. Get me home, please! We've got comfort food in the kitchen and I hope to have a few hot meals lined up before we leave on Monday.
- When you remove tissue, the body doesn't like it much and wants very much to fill that void with fluid, which is bad and can be painful. To avoid that, the idea is to compress everything and hold everything very, very still. So I'll be wearing a garment I've spent my entire life avoiding - oh, it may be medically-indicated, but it's still essentially a tube top. I want sequins and blue eyeshadow to go with it, but apparently that's not an option. At least not one covered by insurance.
- Due to the (still fingers crossed here) change in date, Christmas is going to be very interesting. But honestly, I want this done. As in DONE. So I jumped at the date change. Looks like the 23rd of December for me. I'm scheduled to go first that day, so we've booked a hotel room close to the hospital rather than make the hour-long drive at 4 AM.
- The date was switched because a pathologist managed to get the slides from my biopsy, examine them, and say, "By George, the doctor's right in her surgical plan!" With that done (they weren't expecting the pathologist to get the slides so quickly, but that Very Fetching Hat seems to have some magical powers), there was a slot on the 23rd, so the hospital called me, and I began a whirlwind of phone calls to schedule what felt like thirty-seven separate appointments. While not physically exhausting, it's been a draining day.
- The 23rd of December. That's sort of funny in the "non ha ha" way - a year ago, I began jobbling as part of my "I'm going to take better care of myself" pledge. (My first jobble was on Christmas Eve, I believe.) Now this.
It'll make you pause.
And maybe that's the lesson in all of this.
Be safe. And don't wait to tell those you love that you love them. If you get another chance to do it, tell them again. Won't hurt. Might help.