Thursday, April 2, 2009

Expansion Process

Ripken's Birthday! One year ago I got my lymph nodes out. What a year! I finished the expansion process on March 23. For anybody that is going to go through this I just have to say, be prepared! For some reason I thought it was going to be easy, it is anything but! With the mastectomy the surgeon basically put a balloon with a port in my chest wall. Every week I go to the plastic surgeon and he fills it with fluid. The first month wasn't bad. After that, it felt like a mini boob job every week. It is painful, and you can't sleep. I try to take pain pills, but they make me sick. It took about 4 months while the muscle slowly stretches I hated it. I guess radiation tightens the muscle? I have reconstruction on April 30th. Maybe then it will be done! Right now I have two extremely lop sided boobs, and one feels like I have an immovable tennis ball partially under my arm pit. I try to wear clothes that are loose, any bra hurts. I know, too much info again, I just needed to vent again, and thought anyone that is going through the same thing would appreciate knowing what to expect.
Signing out until another vent is necessary!


Renee said...

You haven't been on to vent in quite a while! I am glad to hear that you are hanging in there...sorry that it has been more painful than you thought! Ouch!

~Ali said...

I don't think anyone really has any idea what you have gone through this past year. Especially since you NEVER complain about anything. I hope these last few weeks are okay and I hope the surgery goes well. I'm sure I'll talk to you soon. Love you!

Anonymous said...

Hi Ang,
You know you never cease to amaze me! Of all the athletes I have ever been around you top my list! You are tough and full of grit! I have always wanted to run into you...I actually coached this last year at the high school...I have been in retirement since having JD in 2003! My love, admiration, and optimism are sent your way! Alice Heberlein

Blast from the Past said...

Ang -

I think of you and all of our great ISU vb friends and times often, and I did not know until just yesterday you have been fighting this. Gosh back in the day we thought pit drill was tough . . . child's play huh? Your family is beautiful and your blog shows your fantastic spirit and larger than life spirit. You are in my prayers for health and blessings. I believe good things are coming! Love Pauline, a blast from the past!

Anonymous said...

Im not sure if you would even know or remember me from high school. my name then was Aimee Sumner, I just wanted to tell you what an amazing women you are, I started reading your blog back in October when I was diagnosed, and it seems like I am now going through exactly what you have been through. Let me tell you what a strength you have been to me, you are an amazing women and I appreciate so much you posting everything on a blog you have helped me more than you know. No one knows what this is like unless you have been through it. keep fighting you are almost there, Im glad to know what I have to look forward to, my masectomy and expander process is on the 27th of this month.. you and your family are always in my thoughts and prayers take care

Marilyn said...

Hey Angie,

I almost feel guilty that I am ahead of you in the reconstruction since you began before I did. I ended up pushing things and got my 60cc of saline injections in the expanders every week for 6 weeks. I had the implant exchange surgery February 20th and am scheduled for the last two reconstruction surgeries/procedures April 22nd and then again in June.

Like you, my expanders shifted and were lopsided. I wondered if the plastic surgeon would ever be able to make me look somewhat normal, but I have to say, it is incredible what skilled professionals can do. You are going to love the noticeable change from the rock-hard expanders to the soft and squishy implants.

Hang in there (yes, you were giving me that advice several months ago) and know that the best is yet to come!


Anonymous said...

Ang, I just talked to Ryan today and I wanted to tell you that my thoughts and prayers will be with you. I think I'm even going to go to church for you guys. That's right Mike G is headed to the house of the lord. Stay strong and get busy livin for today. I believe good things happen to good people and you and your famliy and nothing but the best of people.


Ang said...

i will be so happy when this is over for you. you are so strong, and i wish you didn't have to be all the time. been thinking about you, and hope life gets easier soon. it is hard to believe it has been a year.

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Matt said...

Hey Ang,

It has been a while since I've seen you friend. I was doing a search on the Daily Herald site a couple of days ago and came across an old article that mentioned you had breast cancer. I couldn't believe that you were having to go through this.

I've always been a fan of yours ever since French class with Madam Christopherson. I enjoyed running into you from time to time at BYU and then that ended too.

You've always been such a great/awesome/fun person and I really admire the way you've gone through everything that you have and inspiring people along the way.

I hope you're continuing to do well,

Matt Horton