Sunday, August 12, 2018

On the mend, sort of.

Tuesday's surgery went reasonably well - it lasted 3 ½ - 4 hours and I was home by mid-afternoon.  I'm sore, but was able to take half-doses of the pain meds the first night, and start stretching out the time and further subdividing the pills so that I took my last quarter of a tramadol about 5 pm the next day, and switched to tylenol after that. Don't get me wrong, I hurt. But it's manageable and is far preferable to the expanders. I also have deep pain in my thighs and belly where fat was harvested to fill in low spots. You'd be surprised how much of your upper chest, no matter ribby, is breast tissue. And that's all gone now. Prior to the surgery, the surgeon came in and asked if I'd been eating ice cream like I promised, then checked my stomach for usable fat. "Hm. Nothing really here," she said, "Let me see your legs." While I was in recovery, she told my husband that she'd taken all but the last three droplets of fat from my belly. So now where the expanders were are highly cohesive silicone gel implants, known as "gummy bears," wrapped in alloderm. That's right, I have a couple of 400 cc gummy bears wrapped in cadaver tissue sewn in under my own skin. It's a little unsettling, to say the least.
I'm healing as I'd expected and planning to go back to work on a light schedule tomorrow. Except one thing. There's the small issue of my left foot. Looks normal enough, right? But the bottom of it is completely numb. I can feel the top of my foot and flex my toes back, but I have nothing on the bottom and can't bend my toes down. The first night I nearly fell a few times getting around. It's like I have a cold, tingly marshmallow attached to the bottom of my leg. I went to see my primary care physician and he said inflammation caused when fat was harvested through my groin is pressing on a nerve. He and the surgeon both agree it should resolve in time. But I've been stumping around for 5 days now and it's not a bit better.
Rest isn't helping, ibuprofen isn't helping, and I'm not all that patient. So today I crossed a new agey, hippie-dippie line that is very unlike me. I'm trying the CBD oil recently legalized in my state. We went to the brand new store that is marketing to older customers who don't feel comfortable knocking around a head shop. It was comical, really - there were two small shelves in the store with various vials and packets of candies. And, weirdly, dog biscuits. I guess if you have a yappy dog this might settle it down? The rest of the shop consisted of two comfy chairs, a couch, rugs, lots of nature-themed decor, and soft music. Their motto is "help without the high," referencing the nearly non-existent THC in the stuff. The co-owners let customers sample water with some of the soluble drops mixed in and I can only describe the taste as "nasty." I will be mixing mine with juice. Will it help the neuropathy in my foot? Who the hell knows? The little bottle has a 30-day supply and it can't hurt. I'm a skeptic by nature and I had to stifle a laugh listening to one customer in dress slacks and tasseled loafers explain that his ex-wife problems were very real and he needed it. Buddy, even a joint isn't going to cure THAT problem. But as we used to say in grad school, "placebo effects are real effects." If I start to get some feeling back in my foot, I'm not going to care what actually brought that about. I would just like to be able to walk steadily again.

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