On the morning of my diagnosis I was very nervous and worried. I put on my Gorman vegetable dress - my "happy" dress. Whenever I wear this dress it transforms how I feel. It's fun, colourful and the print is full of vegetable surprises!
The Gorman Vegetable Dress
These are not my arms.
I put on the dress and I already felt better. If it was going to be bad news I could take it in my happy dress. I started to put on my make up and because I was so nervous I didn't really pay attention to how much I was putting on. Apparently there is such a thing as too much make up for a cancer-related medical appointment! Beth came to pick me up and when I got into her car she said "Muuuum, don't you think you've gone overboard with the make up?" I had evening eyes and evening lips for a medical appointment at 9 am in the morning. So the car journey was spent wiping off the excess eye shadow and replacing the bold lip colour with a nude shade of lip gloss. At least I wasn't worrying about the diagnosis!
The day before my first surgery, I had an awful procedure that involved several very painful injections of radioactive dye into my breast. The radiologist delivering the injections was a cheery man wearing a Cookie Monster tie. That did make me smile a little through the pain. Does a sunny disposition and a Cookie Monster tie make it easier to carry out tortuous procedures?
When having surgery you get to wear one of those attractive surgical gowns that open at the back and a front-buttoning cotton dressing gown over the top. It's generally one size fits all. Being short they cover me to well below my knees. I feel so attractive swathed in voluminous folds of well laundered cotton, stamped with hospital property (to deter you from wearing them home I guess). A pair of white knee-high pressure socks complete the outfit! Perfection!
Yup this pretty much sums up the hospital gown.
This is not me but I know how he feels!
Once again I was feeling very nervous with all the prep before surgery. They have these great lazyboy-type chairs for you to "relax" in. So I was trying to still the nerves and relax with my feet up when the nurse called me in for a consultation. I clicked the side handle forward and nervously jumped up to meet with her. Unbeknownst to me, I had caught the folds at the back of my gowns in the footrest. That pulled me up short real quick with a loud involuntary exclamation (luckily not an involuntary swear word!). I made Beth and the rest of the waiting room laugh whilst hopefully relieving the pre-surgery tension for others.
My other surgical gown-related incident was the obligatory back flash to the lady in the bed opposite me as I shakily got up to use the bathroom for the first time after surgery. I'm so thankful that I was wearing underwear so it was better than it might have been!
When John was sick we coined the phrase "Kiss My Butt Boy" which was a lighthearted way of saying you're really, really sick and we will do anything for you, anytime. Well my stint as "Kiss My Butt Girl" only lasted a few days. It was abruptly drawn to a close when I showed Beth I could wave my arm and was told I could get up and make my own breakfast since I was feeling so good. Darn! Too soon! Too soon!
Today was the first day in a very long time that I woke up with that "I feel good" feeling. Yay! It's amazing to remember that I can feel like this. I still find the ups and downs and forwards and backwards of this cancer journey difficult to deal with but smiling at the ironies of life and having a laugh in the midst of it all helps me to keep going.
Gorman image from www.gormanshop.com.auWalter White resplendent in his hospital gown, Breaking Bad, AMC