Surgery is over, I am home and full out in recovery mode. (Relaxing on the couch is pretty much my life for the next few days since I can't do much yet. I have to remain upright for 3 days, even when I sleep.) Things went as well as I could have asked for. On Wednesday my Dermatologist doctor got all the cancer out in one try (which I was VERY thankful for). This meant I didn't have to go back in for a second or third round but even better it meant I had the smallest possible hole to fix the next day. This was a huge relief because not knowing how long or bad my recovery was going to be really freaked me out.
The next morning I checked into the hospital and they got me all prepped and ready for surgery. They let Geoff come in and sit with me while I waited. I have to say that I am really glad that I was in Michigan for all of this. Everyone from the dermatologists office and the hospital were AMAZING. The nurse even joked before they put me out that she was going to give me a "special margarita" for Cinco de Mayo. That's the last thing I really remember before I woke up and it was all over.
Yesterday I felt pretty good- much better than I thought I would. My nose is swollen, red and I have stitches all down the side of my nose. This morning the swelling has gotten a little worse and includes my eye. I can eat but I can't open my mouth too wide because it pulls on my nose and hurts. I have some pretty strong medicine for when it gets really bad but I want to lay down so bad.
Going through the process of finding out I had skin cancer, having surgery to remove it, having a second surgery at the plastic surgeon to fix the hole in my nose and then recovering has been hard physically but even harder mentally. I've had so many emotions and feelings the past couple of days. I feel Grateful one moment that I was lucky enough to have Basal Cell, that we were able to get it all and I will be healthy as soon as I fully recover. I feel Sad and Shocked that I actually had cancer. I feel Overwhelmed when I think of what it would have been like if it had been melanoma. I've felt very Scared a lot of the time because I wasn't sure of how bad it was going to be. I feel concerned that this could happen to me again.
I'm really struggling on how to address this after I recover. I love being outdoors, running, swimming, picnics, baseball games, the beach... I am fair skinned with moles and burn easily so I have always worn sunscreen. I want to be careful and protect myself but, I don't want to go overboard and feel like I can not longer do things I love. I guess what I need to work on is where I draw the line between careful and paranoid...