Wednesday, February 24, 2010

it's not paranoia, it's precaution

Things are starting to return to normal. My appetite is getting a little better. It was repressed for the first few weeks. I still wanted to eat but seemed like I got full quicker than normal. Slept on my belly for the first time today and there was no pain or pulling sensation. I'm not noticing the flushed face as much although I still get it. My bowels are starting to behave -yeah! The scabs are starting to come off my incisions and at least two out of three look like they won't leave much of a scar. I'm walking on the treadmill a couple of miles every other day. Still get a little tired once in awhile, that's why I only go to the gym every other day but I do take my dog out a few times a day as well. I have my post-op appointment on Monday and hopefully will get the all clear-all healed message and start doing all my activities again.

Did a lot of running around this weekend since I'm feeling good and have more energy. As we were leaving one store to head to another, an armoured truck pulled right up next to us and I hurried dw out of there. I lamented that I should have used the restroom before we left because the next place we were headed wouldn't have one. DW suggested I go back in and use it. At this point I asked her if she wasn't worried at all that there was an armoured truck at the entrance to the store and was a little surprised to hear that no, she wasn't worried at all. She didn't seem to have a care in the world. Before you mistake me for someone that is afraid of every little thing and life itself, let me explain. Several years ago a mutant and two armoured guards entered a bank. Only one of us walked out of there on our own two feet and one left in a body bag. I'm not afraid to go to the bank or the atm, nor do I run screaming when I see an armoured truck but I like to think that I'm a little wiser for the experience. I don't go looking for trouble. I notice the trucks now and I have waited several times for them to leave before I will walk into a store. I know it is very rare to get caught up in a holdup but really not as rare as you would think. I remember when I lived in minnesota, someone was killed in the middle of the afternoon right in front of target and I think it was an innocent bystander, not even the guard.

So that was on saturday. On sunday, we did some more shopping and low and behold, another damn truck parked right in front of the store we were about to enter. This time dw says "we don't have to go in there, let's go next door." Then the truck pulled away and all was good. I know she was just being sensitive to my needs and if I wasn't there I'm sure she would have just gone right in. This is my segue into my monthly reminder to check your breasts/pecs! I figure most of you ignore me because you just don't relate to what I'm saying. I can't even get the people closest to me to do a self-breast exam. About 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer at some point, most will be older. But why not get in the habit of doing it now and get to know all the little harmless lumps and bumps so that you will recognize when something feels different. Go ahead and feel your boobies, or grab a partner and have some fun:)

While I'm on my soapbox, let me also remind you to take care of yourselves and listen to your bodies. I remember when my mom was dying, a very close friend of my parents found out he had prostate cancer and it was very serious. He had blood in his urine, but for whatever reason, did not go to the doctor. We all do stuff like that. Maybe we don't have insurance, or money or we are afraid or we just don't have time to be sick. Sometimes our problems fix themselves, but in his case the waiting proved fatal. Me, my siblings and my friends are all getting to that age where shit starts to happen to our bodies. Please take the time to see your doctor for a tuneup! Ok, I'm done now, thanks for listening:)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

taking timeout for fun

Last weekend dw and I went eagle watching at farmington bay. Tried to do this last year but waited too long and missed them all although we were lucky enough to see one fishing by the side of the road when our friend jc was here. I was about a week and a half out from surgery last weekend and I think I was still feeling a little tired but I can't even remember now how my belly felt. It was great getting out in nature and seeing these awesome birds! They are so beautiful, majestic and powerful. It was funny watching them hang out with the seagulls. The gulls were so noisy and the eagles never said a word. I was expecting the eagles to take a swipe at the gulls just to get them to shut up but no blood was shed.

Wow, seems like surgery was so long ago! I had to triple check the calendar because I can't believe I am only two weeks and two days out from surgery. The whole hospital thing, gas pains and discomfort is almost a blur in my memory. I have to be really careful about my movements because I feel almost back to normal. The problem is if I try and get up using only my abs or try and pick up something that is too far out of my reach I am reminded that things inside me aren't healed yet. Caught dw staring at me last nite and thought she was admiring my hot bod but instead she said "you're walking like normal!" Yes, to the unsuspecting eye, I am perfectly normal. I feel good. Still a little tired but not enough to take naps anymore. I've gone out every day this week driving on different errands. I've snuck in a little bit of household chores although I'm not supposed to:) I've only had the one night sweat so far and no hot flashes. Still getting a flushed face and generally warmer than usual. But nothing really to complain about. I thought it would be a lot worse and maybe I will experience more as time goes by but I can definitely handle things as they are. 
I felt pretty happy this week. I was perfectly content reading, watching the olympics and getting out for my daily errand. I've come a long way from those early days when I first learned what brca was and was totally devastated. My insomnia has disappeared. My attention span has returned. I'm starting to look ahead and past this thing. I guess you could say I have finally accepted it.

Monday, February 15, 2010

the heat after menopause

Got this really funny Hallmark card from dw yesterday! Inside it says "you still get me hot." So fitting in more ways than one! Can't say I've had a hot flash yet but my skin is usually warm or hot now. I can feel the heat escaping from my head. DW thinks she has been perimenopausal her whole life since she has always been hot. I call her my 'toaster.' She always keeps me warm in the winter and I have to push her away in the summer. Don't know what we are going to do now that we are both hot. Maybe get a fire extinguisher for the bedroom or crank up the air conditioner:)

I did run some menopause experiments over the weekend, as I said I would in my last post. This might be too much information for my family and friends but of interest to those of you who are contemplating surgical menopause and those who are just naturally going thru it. I can say that my libido has not disappeared since surgery and it doesn't look like I will need to worry about lubrication. DW wouldn't let me go all the way because she is worried. I'm trying to talk her into next weekend but she prefers to wait until after my doc appointment in two more weeks. God, I hope it goes by quickly! I've been told that things are usually going to be about the same as they were before surgery, so if sex was good before it should be good after. But everyone is different and you never really know until you shut down the estrogen how your body is going to react. Some of us might need a little help after surgery or even if we don't 'need' it, we may want to have some fun and change things up and take our minds off of all our new scars, new boobs and/or loss of body parts. There is a great shop called good vibrations in the san francisco and bay area that has oodles of toys and lubricants. I've been in there and it is very nice and doesn't feel like a skanky porn shop. They also have an online store.

I also experimented with soda and alcohol over the weekend. Had some diet coke around dinner time and I did not experience any hot flashes or night sweats. Had a beer with dinner last nite. This was the first time I had alcohol since the hysterectomy and I didn't get a hot flash or night sweat that evening. I did feel very buzzed after about half a glass though so it might have been a little too soon for me to start drinking. Sometimes I forget that my body needs time to recuperate. I feel pretty good and my energy level is getting better and better every day. I'm not taking naps anymore and I can walk pretty fast. I'm not in pain but I can still feel something where my ovaries used to be. There is some kind of pressure there and I'm sure it would hurt if I started running. I would like to get back to the gym this week and start doing some walking on the treadmill. I have been walking my dog several times a day but that doesn't make me break a sweat. I can tell that this week is going to be tougher on me mentally. My high of having surgery is starting to wear off, I'm not in a sleepy stupor anymore yet I won't be able to go workout hard or even do much around the apartment. I'm not supposed to be doing any cleaning or laundry or stuff like that so not too much for me to do. The olympics are on so that's great! I love watching them, especially the winter games. I'm happy right now but I can feel a little bit of gloom creeping in. Maybe it's just the weather outside. Very overcast. I'm hoping for some sun this week:) That always makes me feel cheerful. I will be able to drive this week so I'm going to have to keep myself busy and plan some fun little day trips. It was really nice getting out of the apartment this weekend!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

the menopause experiments

I've decided to have a little fun with this whole, sudden menopause thing. As you may know, I am not taking any hormones and I was suddenly thrust into the world of surgical menopause just over a week ago. So far, I have only had one night sweat. That's what I'm calling it. I don't think it was an actual hot flash unless I happened to sleep through that part. That was on superbowl sunday and happened to be the first time I had caffeine post-surgery (a small glass of diet coke, to be specific). Caffeine (and alcohol) are suspected to be causes of hot flashes and night sweats. That day, I had the soda in the evening. So yesterday I decided to have another glass and see if it would result in another night sweat. This time I had it before lunch and no, I did not experience anything bad overnight. Today, I am pushing it. Just had two glasses of diet coke at 4pm. Let's see what happens tonight!

Now since I am new at this whole thing, and still recovering from surgery, I'm not sure what may be menopause symptoms and what may just be recovery symptoms, so bear with me. Besides the one night sweat, I've also been experiencing a flushed face (feels taut, hot and red), hot skin and cold hands. The cold hands come in handy as they feel comfortable when placed on my flushed face. Either I am getting used to the flushed face, or it has been getting a little bit better in the last couple of days. Or maybe it depends on the weather. I'll have to keep an eye on that before I jump to conclusions. I have been dressing in layers and try and shed as much as possible as soon as I come in from the cold and then put some back on as needed. I think it has been helping. My mother had a penchant for sweaters that zipped all the way down because they were easy to remove. Now I wonder if this was something she picked up while she was going thru the change or did she always like them?

The stereotype of a woman going thru menopause is that she is bitchy. Up until last nite, I think I've been doing ok and actually been in a very nice frame of mind. To be honest, I can't really blame my mood last nite on the lack of hormones. I am notoriously bitchy when I'm tired and by the time dw gets home from work I am ready to be carried to bed. So I'd have to blame the bitchiness at this stage on still being in recovery rather than menopause. More time is needed to see if I turn into a menopause bitch. Personally, I think my sense of humor has remained intact.

This weekend is valentine's day. What a perfect time to test out if my libido survived surgery! Not that I can go beyond first or second base. My doc would like me to wait until my post-op appointment in 3 weeks until I swing for the fences. But a little necking should give me a good idea if my mojo is still around. I suspect it is. We have had a few kisses but it has been hard to tell what I'm feeling since my muscles and everything else down there is in recovery. My ovaries and uterus were removed through my vagina after all, so it may take a little time for things to return to normal.

If anyone has questions on menopause or an experiment you'd like me to try, I'm open to comments/ideas. Say perhaps you'd like me to perform a patrĂ³n experiment. Simply send me a bottle and I'd be happy to see how many shots it takes to produce a hot flash.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

bed sores and tales from the other side

No, I don't have bed sores but I feel like I should! Been sleeping so much this past week. I've had a hard time keeping my eyes open as dw pointed out in her guest post. I have to correct her though, I have closed my eyes more than once with a cup of tea in my hand! Need to stop doing that before I seriously injure myself! I think I am turning the corner today. I haven't had a nap yet and only have a slight inclination to do so. Today marks one week since I had my surgery. It is also the day I was supposed to get my boobs cut off and get them reconstructed. I mentioned in a previous post that I wasn't sure which surgery I was least looking forward to. As I sat and waited last tuesday to have my hysterectomy, I realized that I was relieved that I wasn't there to get my boobs cut off. That surgery still seems very scary to me. Of course, I am going to do it. I know that it's in my best interest given my personal history and my family history. I'm just not really looking forward to it. The recovery is going to be so much worse than what I'm going through now. I hate being a patient and I hate being told that I can't do certain things. This week will be tough on me as I am sleeping less and feel more like doing the things I've always been able to do, but I still have to take it easy. No driving for another week, no household chores for another two weeks and no working out hard at the gym for another three weeks! I don't know how I'm going to stand it but at least I'll have some more options once I can start driving again. Nobody made me do this surgery. I did sign up for it and I knew what I was getting in to. Doesn't mean it was or will be easy. I chose one of my rugby t-shirts to wear out of the hospital. I figured it was only fitting. "Tough rugby love. Sometimes it hurts."


I don't play rugby anymore. It was something I discovered after college and did for about ten years. It is not an easy sport, especially at that age when I was finally discovering that there were other things in life more important than sports. The time commitment was incredible as was the beating on your body and your wallet. But the rewards were more than worth any pain. I liken these surgeries to rugby. Yes, there is going to be some pain, mental and physical, but in the end it is all worth it. My risk of ovarian cancer was about 30% and now I can rest easy. I just got my pathology results back today and I beat the clock! Everything was benign. I don't even know how to process that information. I don't expect good news anymore when I talk to the doc. That's something I can't wait to work on - how to relax! Or chillax, as the kids say today.

I was doing pretty well at the time of my last post. Things started getting worse friday nite. I got really bloated at dinner and then was up many times during the nite with diarrhea. So saturday, I decided to skip the laxatives (I was only taking a half dose anyway). I actually went out on the town that day. Wanted to wear jeans instead of track pants but my incision sites said no. They are much uglier and bigger than I expected. I have three horizontal cuts on my belly about an inch long each plus a cut in my belly button. I also have two little marks just a little bit bigger than a needle, which is more along the lines of what I was expecting for some reason. They aren't particularly painful, just hit the wrong spots when you put clothes on. I have been wearing track pants and folding the waist band down so it doesn't irritate them. DW took me out to the library and to get our dog from my brother. I felt a little nauseous after being in the truck. I may have been sick from not taking the laxatives because I ended up not pooping at all that day. I also was in kind of a cold sweat most of that day and the next morning. Sunday was not too bad. I think I went back on some laxatives and was able to go a couple of times. That nite though I did wake up in a sweat. Not too different from waking up with low blood sugar, so I had to test my blood sugar to make sure if this was just a menopause thing. That is annoying! Normally when I wake up sweating I just get up and eat something. Now I have to figure out why. Monday was the worst day. I had so much gas pain I couldn't even leave the apartment to try and take a walk. Just paced around inside, with occasional unproductive visits to the toilet where I moaned and cursed. Kept hitting the milk of magnesia until I finally got some relief in the afternoon. Of course, that eventually turned into more diarrhea. I prefer the diarrhea to the constipation, but it is tiring. Feeling much better, stomach wise today. These last two days have brought a new symptom. My face feels flushed and hot, for hours at a time. A little uncomfortable but I'd rather deal with that than more gas pain. I'm not taking any drugs yet for the menopause. I'm waiting for things to settle down from surgery and try and see what things are really going to feel like. As for my belly, stopped taking the pain pills and ibuprofen around friday or saturday morning. I am back down to pre-surgery weight and my belly is no longer distended. I'm still walking slower, but I am mostly pain free. The muscles are a little weak still but I don't need help getting up from a chair or bed. My brain is still operating slowly. It took me hours to write this post. I am going to give in now and take a nap. So glad I am a week out from surgery instead of just waking up in recovery!!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

the hysterectomy wasn't so bad

 
Came home from the hospital with some new toys. A binder (girdle), new water bottle and lung apparatus. The binder was to give me added support because my stomach is a little weak but I am no longer wearing it. It irritates my incision sites and I don't think I need the extra support anymore. The lung thing is to help keep my lungs fully expanded which is supposed to keep me from getting pneumonia, a common hospital by product. It has been helpful since I am trying to remember how to use certain muscles. It has been difficult to cough and to pee and poop. I just kind of hang out on the toilet and let things happen instead of forcing them to happen but it gets better all the time. I was happy to have a small bowel movement last nite and this morning then celebrated some diarrhea after lunch! My stomach feels so huge. I gained about 8 pounds after surgery and it is all gas. I haven't been in a lot of pain. I have about 4 incision sites plus one in my belly button. Only one of the sites is bothering me. It is a little sensitive, but not enough to call painful. My left hand is swollen from the iv that was in it from the time I checked in to the time I checked out. That was the only thing that brought tears to my eyes during the whole procedure. I do so hate the hand ivs. They give me the willys. This one was uncomfortable but bearable once it was all taped into place. What made me cry was when they used it to give me an anti-inflammatory. It stung like a bitch for several seconds and made me squirm and regret that I asked for drugs.

So let's back up a bit and go over the surgery. I went in tuesday morning at 7. I was already checked in from the day before and had my hospital tags on so they scanned me in and I went right to a room where I changed into a bearpaw gown that is a special gown where they can hook up a blower to and keep you warm during surgery. They put what looked like soccer shin guards on my calves. They had tubes attached to them that would be hooked up in surgery (and for the rest of my stay) to a machine that would keep pressure rolling over my calves to prevent blood clots. It felt good and didn't bother me at all when I was sleeping. They asked me a bunch of questions and then dw and I waited about 40 minutes before they took me to preop. DW rode with me in the elevator then was told to go to the waiting area and we kissed goodbye. Then I went to a big room full of curtained areas where I ended up waiting for an hour and a half before surgery. I was told I would be first, but like usual, this wasn't the case. Someone was before me and their short surgery turned into something longer so I had to wait in preop, without dw, without my glasses or my music or anything to do but sit and think about what was about to happen. But I did ok. I didn't freak out or cry. I guess I had already come to grips with it or else I was just worn out and didn't care anymore. I haven't figured that part out yet because I'm still kind of tired and on drugs. I was visited by the preop nurse who put in my iv and kept checking in on me. She was very thoughtful because she went to tell dw that my surgery was delayed and made sure that she knew when they actually wheeled me in since she was expecting me to be done by a certain time. I was also visited by my OR nurse a few times as he kept me informed about when my doc was going to be ready. (Pardon the interruption-my laxatives are working well). Someone else came out and looked at my chart and said she worked with my doc in surgery. I can't remember if she was a nurse or tech or something else. Asked me why I was having surgery and I said because I didn't want to get cancer. She said that was a good reason and her mother was an ovarian cancer survivor and she herself had her ovaries removed so she wouldn't get cancer. I didn't really reply to her story because I wasn't expecting it and wasn't in a talkative mood to boot. Don't know if she was brca or something else. She was probably trying to offer me some support. While I was waiting I heard someone make a phone call to set up a time to have their puppy fixed. Made me wonder if dogs have estrogen and testosterone and how does life change for the dog, other than they don't feel like humping your leg anymore. Finally my doc and the anesthesiologist came out and it was time to rock and roll. Asked my doc about prescriptions for after surgery and she asked me what pain meds I've been on in the past. When I asked about the patch(estrogen) she said, 'oh was that what you were getting at?' We had discussed hormones before and she said she would give them to me if I wanted them. Now she seemed to be trying to talk me out of them. But she said she would give me a script for both an anti-depressant(which would help with hot flashes) and estrogen and I could decide which one I wanted to use. Fine by me. Off to the OR I went. They transferred me onto what seemed like a table much too narrow for me, then put the mask on me and off to sleep I went.

Woke up in icu and my first words were 'I can't breathe.' They couldn't hear me so I had to say it again. They put the air tube thing in my nose and soon I was ok. Still didn't have my glasses so everything was a big blur to me. I felt ok. Not in a lot of pain. Just more pressure on my belly than normal. My nurse kept saying how young I looked. She thought I was 28 not 41 for some reason. She was fussing around me doing something. Probably checking my vitals and giving me drugs. I asked what was for lunch and she said ice chips. Better than nothing! I asked if I could get my glasses and she was nice enough to go to the waiting room and get them from dw. She came back with my glasses, a book and my ipod. She had also walked dw to my room to wait for me. I couldn't go yet though because they hadn't sent my room number to icu and they had to wait for that before they could send me. So we talked about my book and she wrote down the authors name so she could check it out. Then I was off to my room and dw was there to greet me!

My nurse came in and got me all situated. I asked about lunch again and she brought me some ice chips and water so I moved on to pestering about dinner since I figured they wouldn't give me lunch. I wasn't that hungry yet but I knew I would be! I wanted to get up and take a walk but they wanted me to wait a little while. Later, my cna (certified nursing assistant I assume) came in and she was going to let me take a walk. So I sat up, then grabbed the bucket and puked several times. We then decided to wait a couple of more hours until after dinner and the nurse gave me some anti-nauseu medicine. Dinner was all liquid but the nurse said that dw could bring me something solid from the cafeteria if I wanted since my doc's orders were liquids or solids as tolerated. So I got a cookie and held that down fine. Then we walked the hallways and went to the baby section and got to see one newborn cutie. I wanted to take my catheter out and they said if I went for another walk later then I could. But as the evening wore on I couldn't keep my eyes open. I sent dw home so we both could get some sleep and decided to keep the catheter in so I could just sleep and not worry about getting up. I did wake up a few times but did sleep hard in between and even forgot where I was sometimes. Got up at 6am and they took the catheter out. I got dressed, cleaned up a bit and took a walk on my own since they said I could. Had real food for breakfast and took a couple of goes at peeing with a little bit of success. As far as pain went, I don't know if they gave me something after surgery but I didn't ask for anything else until the middle of the night when the gas was starting to build up. Mainly I asked for it because I kept thinking that at some point, everything would wear off and I would be sorry I didn't take anything. Didn't take anything at home except for some ibuprofen until I went to bed. I had some discomfort, from gas I think, so I figured pain meds wouldn't help. But I did feel much better when I woke up so I guess the pain meds do help! Don't know if I will ever learn that. I am always so resistant to taking them but I have stayed on them today and I am moving around much quicker.

As far as pain goes, I didn't have a lot. Mostly felt bloated and some pains as things tried to move around in my stomach. I have had a couple good bowel movements and that seems to have gotten rid of a lot of my discomfort. It is a little hard to position myself in bed at times and I did sleep last nite mostly upright but I did sleep pretty well. Got up a couple of times to use the bathroom and take some meds but no insomnia. I also was able to sleep well the nite before surgery and in the hospital which has been a pleasant surprise. I have often had insomnia during this journey of mine but I seem to be doing ok with the hysterectomy, mentally. I am happy to say that so far I haven't noticed any symptoms of menopause and I am not taking any hormones. I haven't decided what drugs I will take for menopause. I did get a humidifier to help prevent dry skin. I might take some fish oil for my hair and some calcium for my bones. I do have some books here to read about what drugs/herbs I can take and I will start looking into it. But for now, I don't seem to need anything. Right now, walking and liquids seem to be the answer for everything, and some pain pills and laxatives. It really hasn't been too bad.




Wednesday, February 3, 2010

guest blogger - dw (that's me!)

Doctors, surgeries, preventative surgeries, medical insurance, deductibles, co-pays, medical tests, cancer...I never thought I would become so intimate with these words.

Life has changed so much over the last few months with the news of Janine's genetic mutation. Initially the big shock was her breast cancer diagnosis in July.  I thought that once the lumpectomy/treatments was finished that life would return to normal for us - boy, was I wrong! Yesterday Janine had preventative surgery taking out her uterus, tubes and ovaries. Today she's at home walking around gingerly, reading, and dozing off with a mug of hot tea in her hands (she only did this once). She's beginning to regain her sense of humor which is always a treat:)

I'm sure I get under her skin every time I ask if I can help. She can be so stubborn sometimes and want to do everything on her own. Every so often she does let me help her giving me a purpose and making me actually feel useful. It's such a strange feeling to be out of control watching your partner prep for surgery...not a pretty sight by the way...and then actually going through surgery. I would like to announce that I did end up giving her two enemas (one of the nurse's said it was a sign of true love).  (I should add the word enema to the list of words that I never thought I would become intimate with.) the waiting room is no picnic either trying to keep busy and not let your mind wander too much.

Anyways, it's hard to watch the hospital bed, with your loved one, disappear behind closed elevator doors knowing that there are so many uncertainties with surgery. Everything turned out nicely yesterday and the doc came to see me after the surgery and seemed very pleased. Janine was pretty groggy yesterday but eventually was able to get up for a walk down the hall. She sent me home at 9:30pm last night so she could sleep but I know she was watching out for me too.

Lots is happening in our lives right now -- it's actually making me a bit dizzy. I'm trying really hard to hold on to all the positive energy, to keep smiling, and believing that things will turn out right in the end.  Keep your fingers crossed everyone!

p.s. Be careful what you ask for...my dw is starting to boss me around...demanding that I make dinner and bake some brownies. She says she just trying to make me feel useful. yah, right!  :)

Monday, February 1, 2010

can i get some crackers to go with that?

Having some chicken broth for dinner. Almost reached for some crackers because how can you have soup without crackers? And might as well have some cheese to go along with the crackers. And how about a pickle? Pickles and cheese go together like peanut butter and jelly. At least I think so! Oh yeah, can't eat any food cuz I have surgery tomorrow morning. They did let me eat up until noon today though so I made the most of it. DW made the best pancakes over the weekend, chocolate chip and blackberries. Had the leftovers for breakfast and added blueberries and bananas. Then squeezed in a chai and candy bar after getting my pre-op done at the hospital. Had to pee in a cup and have some blood drawn and shell out some money. Got tagged too. Guess I'm all set to go.
Had a wonderful weekend. We went boarding/skiing friday and saturday and conditions were pretty perfect. Blue, sunny skies and lots of snow. Packed a lunch friday but splurged on the chili and brownie on saturday. Took in a movie on sunday, invictus. Awesome movie and not just about rugby. I kind of thought we might be on edge over the weekend due to stress but we were pretty relaxed. Shed just a couple of tears last night. They slipped out after our 'last time' pre-surgery. I wasn't super sad but it's hard not knowing how things are going to be. Hard to say which surgery pains me more, taking out the innards or cutting off the boobs. The boobs are a visible reminder and will feel different but most of the time they are under wraps anyway, unless I take them out to play. The ovaries are invisible to me and leave no visible scar. But they affect my entire body. I have to worry about hair loss, dry skin, crazy moods, loss of libido, vaginal dryness and who knows what else. I've come to grips with it all although I still have those moments where I can't believe this is my life. Less than a year ago I had never heard of brca and would have bet a million dollars that I wasn't a brca mutant. Now, tomorrow at this time I will be half-way through my journey. I am ok. I had a brief panic attack this morning as I drove to the hospital for my pre-registration so I guess I kind of know how I will feel tomorrow on my way to surgery. I get to go first since I'm diabetic and they don't like to fool around with our meds too much so I am lucky that I don't have to sit around all day. I will be checking in at 7am. Should take a couple of hours I think. DW will send some updates out, maybe by facebook and maybe as a guest blog here. Thank you for all your thoughts and well wishes.