I guess I spoke too soon when I decided that medical news and medical drama would not dominate Soapboxville this year. As it turns out portions of the skin graft from December are not healing well and so I am scheduled for my 4th skin graft in early February.
I saw Dr. Matthews on Monday and she decided to move ahead with the skin graft. I told her that I have a bunch of doctor appointments in February and I didn’t want to miss any of those. We settled on a date, which worked for both of us and I went on my way. On Wednesday the phone rang and it was her office telling me my surgery was scheduled for a different date. I said, no it’s scheduled for x date and the scheduler said, no it’s scheduled for y date. Things went back and forth over 2 days and it was revealed that she will be away at a conference on the originally scheduled date.
I tried to move the surgery to a date that allowed me to make it to all of my appointments and attend Chuck’s grandmother’s 90th birthday party but it was not to be. There are no openings for surgery that would not mean moving surgery to March and so I spent today moving all of my February appointments to March and sending an e-mail to Chuck’s uncle to let him know that I will not be at the party.
I am not okay. I’m clinging to sanity with a rapidly fraying rope. I’m exhausted and tired and overwhelmed and depressed and I just want to lie down and sleep for a while. I don’t want to have to worry about surgery or upcoming doctor appointments or being evaluated by the neurosurgeon or the dermatologist. I just want to sleep. I’m too weary to saddle up this time.
I’m really feeling like this will never be over. When I asked why this is happening to me she said the area had been radiated during the treatments. In November when I asked if this would continue happening and where do we go from here if the December surgery wasn’t successful she said she was trying to avoid me having to have a 10-hour surgery by performing the 3-hour surgery in December. Well here were are, the December surgery has areas where the skin graft didn’t take and I’m going in for yet another skin graft. This surgery is minor like the one in March of last year but I’ll be attached to a wound vac for 9 days following surgery. The wound vac is 2 and half pounds. (see it here: http://www.kci1.com/KCI1/activactherapyunit) This means I can’t go anywhere, I can’t do anything. I’ll just be at home attached to a 2 and a half pound unit with yet more skin removed from my left leg and stitched to my head.
I’m not okay. I don’t know how else to say it. I always said I’d be honest in telling my story here and this is where I am right now. I wasn’t up to the surgery in December and I went into it reluctantly. I didn’t feel strong enough or emotionally able to go through surgery again. I was unaware of the seriousness of the surgery. I had no idea that I’d wake up attached to a wound vac and a morphine pump with a drain in my back. I was told I’d be in the hospital 2 or 3 days in actuality I was there for 6 days. This surgery is outpatient. I’ll be home the same day. In fact it won’t even be at the hospital. This time I’m being operated on at the surgical center. But again there are no guarantees that this time is the charm. There are no answers. There is no definite end. There is just more surgery and more uncertainty.
I’m 15 months in now and I don’t know what the universe is trying to teach me. I don’t know why this keeps happening to me. I’m grasping desperately at normal and okay. I’m trying to be strong and stoic and brave. I’m trying to be positive and optimistic but each setback, each bump in the road, each change in schedule unravels my rope just that much more. I’m really close to falling apart and right now I have no idea how I’m going to make it through this latest setback. I’m weary.
Thanks for reading. I love you all.
With much love and great affection,
~ Carol Anne