Check-in time, 6am, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS), 4/11/17
Me and mom pre-surgery 🙂
Trying to be oh so fashionable while also trying to forget the nerves. I reallyyy disliked these compression socks!
My mom was making fun of the hat. It wasn’t my best look…
Dr. Denham is the Fellow of my breast surgeon, Dr. Ochoa. She is truly AMAZING.
Probably about to upload a selfie to snapchat. Guilty. It was all fun and games until…
One of my wonderful nurses brought out a giant needle. My face says it all…
And then I was all smiles again. These women are fantastic! I’m pictured here about to take my Marinol (medicinal marijuana).
So incredibly thankful for these two. My mom and dad are my best friends, and I could not have walked this journey without them.
Dr. Ochoa, my breast surgeon, came in during pre-op to discuss any last minute concerns. She is a total rockstar.
I’m probably asking her when I can practice yoga again ha! She said it would be a few months… waawaaa.
My incredible plastic surgeon, Dr. Wright, came in during his clinic hours to put my mind at ease.
He explained that he would come into the O.R. after Dr. Ochoa had completed her portion of the surgery in order to place expanders in my chest. These would prepare me for future reconstructive surgery.
The expanders can expand all the way to a D-cup (which is in no way foreshadowing of what’s to come ha!).
And then it was off to the O.R. Shit was about to get real…
I said goodbye to mom and dad, a very very fuzzy memory for me thanks to the drugs already in place.
Scrub attire required beyond these doors. No turning back now!
I have no recollection of this photo, but I love it to pieces.
All smiles with my doctors as the drugs took away any memory of this moment. Who knows what we were laughing about…perhaps the fact that I was strapped to an OR table? Maybe it was our fashionable blue hats again…
*Disclaimer* The remaining photos are graphic and even though I left out the more visual photos to spare all gag reflexes, the following images may still cause queasiness.
Dr. Ochoa is removing all breast tissue in the right breast.
Dr. Wright is pictured placing the expander (with blue dye) inside my chest. Those will gradually get filled with more saline as I go in for “fills” once a week.
Dr. Wright is closing me up! His work here is done. Phew.
Rest and recovery. AKA anesthesia hangover. Ouuucchhh!
I want to say a massive thank you to all of my amazing nurses, geneticists, oncologists and doctors at UAMS. I could not have had a better experience throughout this whole process. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being so thorough, honest and really, really great at your jobs. I’m so grateful for everyone I came in contact with since my very first appointment in early March. Thanks for creating such a special place in Little Rock, Arkansas.
My entire journey will also be aired this week on Inside Edition so stay tuned for that!