First of all, thanks to all of you for your kind thoughts and well wishes for Blaine (my gosh, I should macro that phrase, since I seem to need it every few weeks on this site and could save myself the trouble of typing it over and over.) We got home yesterday afternoon and for the most part, things went smoothly. It wouldn’t be “Blaine”, of course, without at least a little bit of excitement --- he already had the teeth yanked because they were rubbing on the skin graft and the surgeons don’t want anything touching the graft for four weeks, to allow it to heal properly. Anything. As in, at all. He is on a total liquid diet for four weeks; Boost and smoothies. The nutritionist did say anything I cook for dinner can be put in a blender, but gag. Can you imagine drinking chicken pot pie through a straw? Blaine said no, thanks, he’ll stick with the nutritional supplements and hope for the best. And in the meantime, we had a quick moment of thankfulness that he got the flu last summer and we didn’t have this surgery when the doctors wanted to, right before the cruise. Can you imagine going on a 7-day cruise and not being able to eat an entire thing???
He also blew out an IV and got a forearm full of Demerol --- imagine that, him with his butterfly fairy princess veins and all. It did provide a little levity to the moment when they decided to put the next IV in his foot and tape it to his leg. Blaine is not exactly a hairy, hairy man, but that tape hurts when they rip it off, so he asked for a minute to have time to shave away some of the leg hair first, before they attached the tape. He proceeded to shave several bald patches into various spots on his leg, and looked a bit like a dog with mange …. Hair here, hair not there. When I asked, “Why don’t you just shave the whole leg?” he replied, “Because it would look funny.”
Um, yeah. Because walking around with bald patches on one leg looks sooooo normal otherwise. Add to that the bright red, raw patch of flesh where they *took* the skin for the graft, and you’d think one leg had been caught in a house-fire.
He’s out of the Mick Jagger phase, and now looks like he lost a bar fight, or perhaps had a car accident and hit his mouth on the steering wheel. The doctor talked to us about the *next* surgery they can offer, a very high-tech event where they get 3-D images of his head, getting a sci-fi mold impression of the side of his face that is healthy. They would then build an internal mask, a mirror image of the side of his face that is normal, and then peel back his face and insert it under the skin, like an implant. The goal, of course, is to have the right side of his face look just like the left. Blaine admits he is self-conscious about the dent (for lack of a better word) where his cheekbone and gums used to be, and where all the radiation atrophied and contractured (is that even a word?) the muscles and tissues of his face. I told him he’s just as handsome to me now as he was when he first got cancer, and if people are so rude as to stare that’s *their* problem, not his, and geez, aren’t you ready to be DONE with all this stuff???? He agrees that yes, there reaches a point where you just have to say enough, and he thinks he is there. So I think we’ll take a wait and see approach to further reconstruction. Maybe in a few years, when he has recovered better physically and mentally, he’ll be up for another go at it.
In the meantime, I wanted to address a few things in the comments section:
Marie, you’re exactly right, I hadn’t even thought to include that four and half years of Blaine having cancer is long enough for his daughter to be diagnosed with leukemia, go through her treatment, and be off treatment for almost two years, kicking butt and taking names in the meantime. That is perhaps the best marker of all, that she is preparing to be a participant in the Survivor’s Clinic at Scottish Rite, something we can do when she hits the two-year mark. Go, Kendrie!
Rita, I’ve actually done three surrogacies, and the second one I carried twins. Hence the six kids. I’m probably going to share more about this soon, since several people have been kind enough to ask. I’m still mulling it over in my head, since I don’t want to do anything to violate anyone else’s privacy, and surrogacy stories are pretty intimate things.
I can’t remember who asked, but that butt-ugly orange fish in Alaska was called a Yellow-Eyed Rock Fish. Hideous, wasn’t it?
And last but not least, to Anonymous in the comment section --- Blow me. First of all, yes, this site is all about me. Guess what? It’s my blog, I can do that. It’s why I play the song “All About Me” so often; I don't care that you think music on a site is obnoxious. It’s why when I sign off here I think I’ll check to see if I can buy the domain all about me dot com, and why I erect billboards and shrines in my honor up and down the eastern seaboard. If you don’t like it, don’t read here.
Secondly, if you choose to not only read here but leave rude comments, for God’s sake, have the courage to sign your name. And for the love of pete, purchase a dictionary or thesaurus or perhaps even better, a Hooked on Phonics course you could complete. Because your mis-spelling and improper use of ALLCAPS and excessive application of exclamation points are annoying. So blow me.
Third, this is *my* personal site. I do not have advertising on this site because my intent was never to make money here, or try to lure readers in from anywhere. It is a personal forum which began with my daughter’s Caringbridge site, a wonderful service that allowed me to share and vent and purge during one of the most difficult times of my life. It then segued into this blog, just for fun. I write for my own personal enjoyment, and if a few people enjoy reading it, then all the better. But I do not put my personal life out there for your criticisms and critique. I didn’t ask you to come here and read, nor do I need to know that you think “IAM FUL OF MYSELFF!!!”
Lastly, I am tired of deleting you. So, here. I’ve mentioned you, and you’ve gotten the attention you so obviously want. But, in fact, you are quickly taking the fun out of this blog for me. So blow me. Buy yourself Hooked on Phonics. And then go away.