Why I'm Still Crabby After a Mastectomy and Two New Boobs


Today is Friday morning and the second morning in a row now that I’m grabby. Of course I don’t mean grabby — I mean crabby, and it pisses me off that I wrote grabby instead of crabby, because it shows how out of it I am that I can’t even type a word correctly as I say it in my head.

Some might call it irritable. Some might call it downright bitchiness. Some might call it depression. Some might call it, correctly, that I had surgery on Wednesday to replace the spacer after my mastectomy a year ago and give me a little lift on the left side to make things even — and I am the patient with the least amount of patience.

I got two new boobs on Wednesday. I should be grateful and happy. I’m on the last steps of putting this whole ordeal behind me. How is it that I am crabby?

I’m crabby because the general anesthesia gave me a multi-day dull headache that I can’t seem to shake.

I’m crabby because my right boob still feels like I have a softball inside it when this surgery was meant to make it a lot softer.

I’m crabby because I feel like I took at least three steps back from how I felt the day before the surgery and about a thousand steps back from how I felt over the summer.

I’m crabby because I can’t blow dry my hair and I am convinced I look like a wrinkled, gray-haired old lady.

I’m crabby because I have to sleep on my back for six more weeks and I absolutely hate sleeping on my back.

I’m crabby because I took a double dose of my sleeping aid to get four hours sleep last night and I am thinking of taking a stronger one tonight so I can get six hours. (Alas, I spent so long kicking the sleeping drug habit.)

I’m crabby because I can’t do the laundry… go figure.

I’m crabby because I can’t unload the dishwasher.

I’m crabby because I can’t go food shopping (or any shopping, for that matter).

I’m crabby because I won’t be able to carve my pumpkin with the kids on Sunday.

I’m crabby because all the coffee cups are on the top shelf, and I need coffee now — right now — and I am not supposed to reach my arms above my head, but I do anyway… because I need coffee — right now.

I’m crabby because I ate a third of the quart of peanut butter chip ice cream yesterday and might have screwed up my surgery by scooping the ice cream out of the container before softening it in the microwave (which I can’t reach anyways).

I’m crabby that I removed a perfectly good pedicure before surgery, because I took it off as the pre-surgical instructions instructed, but then when I got to the hospital, the nurse told me that was an old policy that no one adheres to.

I’m crabby because my left boob now has some pretty intense scarring and is black and blue, so I have zero pretty boobs.

I’m crabby because I have to wear the same uncomfortable, ugly, supportive bra I had to wear after my mastectomy.

I’m crabby because my mother-in law-is in the hospital with pneumonia and I can be of no help whatsoever.

I’m crabby because being home after surgery and feeling like doo doo brings back everything I hated about last winter that I had totally put out of my mind.

I’m crabby because I can’t exercise until mid-November.

I’m crabby because I am jealous of anyone who can leave the house and do normal stuff.

I realize I have been telling my husband Mike how miserable I am for the last two days. He’s probably a little sick of it. But he rises to the occasion, again and again.

“Do you want me to blow dry your hair, so you feel better?” he asks (not with the least amount of reluctance) before he heads off to work. I run up to the shower before he changes his mind. It is my first shower post surgery, and it is absolutely delightful.

And Mike is gifted with the blowdryer — who knew. He does a fabulous job. We look in the mirror and I smile for the first time.

And then he tells me he only offered because it was Shabbat and he figured that if I feel better about myself he might have a chance of getting lucky tonight.

And we both crack up about that one because there is no way, and we both know it.

Proving, once again, that laughter is the best medicine. Here’s to feeling better next week…

This post was originally published on BetterAfter50.com.

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 Thinkstock photo by Yobab


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