I thought this would be it. I thought after they finally pulled the damn drains out of Debbie’s sides about three weeks after surgery that it would be smooth sailing…
I thought I would wrap up the journal and we would move on with life. I mean how much could happen now? Man was I wrong.
It was just another stop on the journey, not a destination. I also quickly realized I needed the journal to survive, as much as it couldn’t survive without me. And it wasn’t fair to cut our story short. But for one day I thought it just might be. Below is what I thought would be the final post.
Winners. The Final Post.
Written May 29, 2012 10:47pm
Winners. Goes without saying we feel like that now. The good day had two great “bookends”, Deb getting her drains removed and then Emily’s team, the one I co-manage, winning their softball game with the storm clouds rolling in and just one of the best damn double plays you’ll ever see to finish a game.
Deb first. She was scared this morning, scared pulling out the drains was going to hurt. From what she had read, it was time to double-up on the pain pills. But it wasn’t so bad. At our appointment, Meg, our PA, warned her it would feel a little “wormy”, but that would be about it. She was dead on. Deb said it felt like a worm being pulled out of her side. No pain… just gain. The gain I could see was the sense of relief on her face, dramatic relief, that this part was over. I could feel it too. I said it before, the drains were like the umbilical cord that kept you tethered to the hospital – tethered to the surgery – tethered to the memory of that day – tethered to the remnants of what cancer did to her. Watching them get thrown in the trash was nirvana. Goodbye. Adios. Get the f–k out.
The ride home was like a new day. Though, just like this journey, there’s always something that steals a little bit of the joy. Deb took that pain pill before the appointment, just in case. And now as we stopped at Santoni’s for some food, she felt dizzy and had to get back in the car. We went home, and she got in bed for a nap. I was going to go to work. But my place was here, until she was ready to get up, or our friends came by to bring her lunch. By noontime, when I was ready to go, lunch and the girls arrived and Debbie was much better. Much, much better. And why shouldn’t she be… a chapter closes and now a new one begins. It’s the other reason I need to stop the daily postings. Time. More on that in a moment.
I forgot to mention that after they pulled the drains, they also filled the breasts with 50cc of saline, each side. Meg said it would start to round them out a bit at the bottom, and it did. I can already see when all is complete (and not that they weren’t before), but these will be some spectacular Ta-Ta’s. Ba ba booey.
Debbie will get injected every week for the next two months, until she gives the doctors the sign – “No Mas”. By the end of July that part will be over. We then wait two months more and in October, October 3rd to be exact, will be the second surgery to pull out the expanders and put in the implants. Game, set, match. It will be outpatient surgery, but still a 1-2 week recovery. We leave for Vancouver on October 28th on a trip I earned through work, so we wanted it wrapped up by then. It will all be good. Taking Deb and her new “friends” international, baby. As Charlie Sheen would say, “Winning”.
We’re all winners. All of us. Every day you get up and breathe fresh air, you’re winning. Every day a gift. Every day an adventure. Every day something unexpected. Good. Bad. Ugly. Funny. Heart-stopping. Breathtaking. It’s just life. Life threw us a curveball and we managed a big hit. We didn’t strike out, not this time. Our at-bat was a courageous one. Much more so for the hitter, my wife, who stood in the batter’s box and fouled off pitch, after pitch, after pitch, til she finally decided to lay down a bunt. A sacrifice. Debbie’s sacrifice. She took one for the team. Man it hurts to say that . But it’s true. I couldn’t do it for her, though so many times I wished I could. All I could do was coach – offer support, offer encouragement, show love, compassion and tell her we’re gonna win this game. We did. This time.
I’m not stupid enough to think that everything in life will be smooth sailing here on out. It’s life. How does that saying go — if it was easy everyone would do it. And everything would be perfect. It’s not. Life ain’t always beautiful. It wasn’t meant to be. But what can be as close to perfect as possible is the way you choose to view what happens. Always expect the best, be positive, have a great attitude, smile, laugh, dream, plan and be damn ready so if the worst happens, you don’t let it beat you down. And don’t worry how you fell, focus on how you are going to get back up.
Winners. We feel like winners because everyone around us made us feel that way and we can’t thank you enough. There would never be enough room on this website to express how we truly feel about everyone who has been there for us. Simply saying “thank you” falls short, but it’s all we’ve got. Just know, we’ll be there for you, in thought, in prayer, in action.
It’s time to turn the page. Time to get back to life’s most important job full-time – raising our daughters, Sophie and Emily. We gave life to them and they are life’s ultimate gift. Every day you get to keep unwrapping them and see what’s inside that box. They never cease to amaze me. And why shouldn’t they, they were born from the most amazing woman I have ever met, Debbie, my wife.
There’s a new country song by Josh Turner that pretty much sums up why these postings need to stop. It’s called “Time is Love”. I’m posting a link to the page below from You Tube. Give it a look and a listen. And from the bottom of my heart, thanks for listening to me.
Thanks for caring, Mark