|Liddy and I after dinner|
|Out for dinner 🙂|
All is finally said and done; the rod is out and the once large puckered scars on my arms are thin and streamline. What a whirlwind.
Saturday after my leap of faith I arrived in West Palm Beach. As always, it felt really good to be back. I went to the Quantum House by the hospital to visit friends Jen and Liddy. It was so good to catch up with them and some other patients at the house. Even though I had seen pictures, I couldn’t believe how great Liddy looked since the last time I was here in March. That evening my friend Jada and I went to Delray Beach for a much needed fun night out. The following morning, Jada, Rachel and I grabbed some brunch before I picked up mom from the airport.
It had been since Christmas that I had seen mom and it felt so good to be reunited with family. Once we checked into the hotel we quickly changed into our bathing suits and went out to Palm Beach. So wonderful. The weather was perfect. Later that evening, we met Jen, Liddy and Caroline out at Rocco’s Tacos for dinner. What a great time we had; girl’s night out to chat and be silly. The next day we had pre-op and clinic so we both knew it was going to be a long one. We ran a the last of our errands before calling it a night.
|Natalie and I|
|Kim and I|
Monday morning came mighty quick and for the last time I went through all of the pre-op paperwork etc. with Dr. Paley’s nurse, Natalie. After all of the paperwork was done and blood was drawn I went up to clinic to see the doc. After more paperwork and x-rays, we went back to our room and waited. Familiar faces continued to walk by the doorway; it was so good to see my ‘extended family.’ One of the PAs, Kim, came in and gave us a basic run down of what to expect Tuesday morning. The rod was coming out and we were good to go with the scar revision. Dr. Paley came in soon after and confirmed everything. We were all set. The last hoorah and lucky for me, I was first up on the OR schedule. We had to be there at 6:30 in the morning, no complaints here; get in and be done 🙂
Since we had quite a bit of sunlight left in our day, mom and I took a shuttle over to Peanut Island. The weather was perfect and the water was so warm. This time, the evening before surgery, I was not as nervous as I used to feel. Usually, the day before, I am a ball of nerves but for some reason this time around it was different; no complaints here. After walking/swimming around the island we hit up Tiki Bar for dinner.
|Oh South Florida, I do love you 🙂|
Sleep didn’t come too easy that night and before we knew it, it was time to go to St. Mary’s. Almost immediately I was called back into the pre-op holding area and changed into my most flattering hospital gown. Then the fun began. Because I was having both arms operated on the IV could not be put in my arm. It took six attempts to get the IV in and all failed. By the sixth stick, I had become a real baby and was squealing on the gurney. Mental note: feet and hands are hurt like anything when it comes to IV attempts. Finally the anesthesiologist said that we could just put one in where it was easy access until I was under anesthesia. Fine by me, I was beginning to feel like a guinea pig. Once the IV was in, things began to move very quickly. Some very familiar faces from the OR came to wheel me back into the operating room for the last time. It’s a little sad knowing that I am not going to see them, unless of course I visit 🙂
|I will miss these faces. Jogie, Candace, Valerie and Kim. Thank you for EVERYTHING|
|No recollection of seeing Mark at all!|
The last thing I remember was getting my happy medicine right before being wheeled back. After that, it’s all a blur. Even my last photo op slipped my memory until I saw it. Yes, at 26 Patches my stuffed animal still came back with me. He went into my first surgery and he was going into my last. Not ashamed what so ever!
Next thing I remember was waking up in recovery. The pain was minimal and there were more familiar faces. Everything had gone smoothly. I was finished and very grateful for such a successful outcome.
Three days later and I couldn’t be happier. My arms look phenomenal and once they have fully healed over; perfection. I’m having minimal discomfort in my foot that hardly affects my walking. This afternoon I went to clinic for the last time. Dr. Paley was very pleased with the outcome and that was that. It’s almost hard to believe. The surgical door has finally closed. Now I have life to look forward to and plenty of learning experiences at that. One thing is for sure; I would change anything that I have gone through for the world.
|A hero to me and in the hearts of many. Thank you for all you have done for me Dr. Paley.|