So it’s been awhile since I last blogged. I know this, and have thought about it often. Sat down at my computer and came up with several earth-shattering ideas for the next blog, but some things just need to get worked out in the somewhat sacred private world of home, and in my head.
That said, there are a few blog-worthy moments I have had over the past few weeks. The burns I ended up with a week post-radiation were pretty intense, and likely compounded by some of the locations (it’s hard to ignore a burn under your arm). I had my favourite nurse and her various companions coming to my house on a regular basis, coating me with Flamazine (still ‘flamazing’) and experimenting with mesh wraps, trying (with minimal success) to convince me to wear them based on their resemblance to some 80’s throw-back lingerie. It did help, but only as long as the cream was on in a thick, very messy layer. As for the lingerie appeal, it was a big of a stretch.
I was in a lovely little shop downtown, looking for a little something to bring a friend who had just had her thyroid removed when I came across this product.
I bought some for her, some for me, and took it home and slathered some on, covering my burns back up with bandages and getting on with my day. The next morning, I asked for re-bandaging help from someone who knows how, and as I was removing the old bandage with very little discomfort, I was pleasantly surprised to see that I had apparently slathered on a little magic, because my burn had literally healed itself at least 50% overnight. Aloe vera, Vitamin E, Witch hazel, Rosemary and Tea Tree are the ingredients. Apparently you can eat this stuff if you want to, it’s that natural. That works for me. I abandoned the Flamazine in favour of this little wonder, and my burns healed so quickly that I was able to go and get ‘re-adjusted’ with no concern for the state of my skin this past week in Winnipeg.
Speaking of Winnipeg, what a surreal trip that was. I don’t know how many of you have ever been boob-shopping, but it’s a very strange experience, to say the least. To have the surgeon’s right-hand-nurse cheerfully stride into the room and hand you these, announcing ‘So now we get to play with some boobies!’ is a little out there, even for someone with my lack of filters.
My surgery is just over six weeks away, so they tell me, and anyone who’s ever had to have tissue expanders in their bodies for almost 8 months knows just how much I’m looking forward to getting rid of them. Without the ability to properly demonstrate their nature, I will simply say that I could probably knock on my wooden door and get more give from it than from these expanders. They are definitely doing their job, expanding muscle and tissue, a fact to which my massage therapist would attest. The muscles between my shoulder blades are tense enough these days to warrant the press-up-against-the-door-frame self-administered pressure point massage technique several times a day, although he assures me that’s a bad idea. I go with whatever works, and am thankful to be connected with people who give great back-cracks and massages.
In the meantime, I am trying to re-train my body to sleep, which is proving to be no small task. Melatonin seems to help a little bit, or at least my body feels somewhat more relaxed after having taken it. Apparently radiation can have an effect on the body’s ability to produce Melatonin, which it normally does quite naturally. This could explain my almost complete inability to sleep for any length of time at night. Armed with some of this, I am charging myself with the task of detoxing my body in time for surgery and learning to sleep again.
With radiation burns a thing of the past and my days free for healing, I am starting to get outside again. Winter is coming. It’s going to be a good one.