Monday- Appointment with Dr. Kathy Huang (my Plastic Surgeon)

On Monday, I went in for an appointment with my Plastic Surgeon. I had been monitoring the fluid coming out of my Jackson Pratt drains and had been keeping a careful record. I knew the fluid levels were low enough that they could come out, but I still worried that for some reason she would tell me they had to stay in.

I actually had a dream the night before that I couldn’t find a ride to the appointment, (ridiculous, because both my parents have been picking me up and going to every appointment with me, equipped with steno pads and carefully prepared questions to ask the Doctors), so in the dream, I took several buses to get to Dr. Huang’s office, only to realize that I had forgotten to take my drainage record chart with me. She scolded me, and said I would have to wait another week to take them out because of my negligence. I woke up in a serious panic.

Luckily, that isn’t what went down, but here is what did happen. There are not just a few inches of cord inside your body, its all coiled in there. As my friends mom so gracefully described it to me, “It will feel like pulling out a very long tampon.” I told the doctor about this analogy and she agreed that it would feel a little like that, although she said she wouldn’t continue to use that analogy with her other patients. She pulled the drains out, and surprisingly just put gauze and tape over them, saying the gaping holes would just magically close on their own (I was thinking “Um are you sure about that?” But it turns out she was right…she probably has done this a few times). The next step was to fill the extenders in my chest with saline. I left the office a full cup size bigger than when I walked in. I have to say, leaving the office with the drains out and breasts that were larger than a pre-pubescent girl’s was pretty damn nice. I floated on cloud nine the rest of the day. I crashed later that evening when the painful effects of stretching the skin like that kicked in, but hey the drains were still out.

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4 Responses to Monday- Appointment with Dr. Kathy Huang (my Plastic Surgeon)

  1. Kara says:

    Hi Alison, I just wanted to say that I think you’re really brave–not only for the grace with which you’re going through something really difficult but also for sharing so much of it so openly. I’ve been thinking of you lots, and am looking forward to seeing you soon. –Kara

  2. Melissa Byrd says:

    Wow. Love the tampon analogy. Nevertheless, I COMPLETELY understand how hateful and irritating those drains are, and am so delighted you finally have a little bit of relief there. It really should give you a whole new sense of freedom of movement and hopefully make sleeping a little easier, too. I hope you and your family have a fun and relaxing holiday weekend and just know that all we Roanoke Byrds are thinking about you. Lots of love to you, Al!

  3. Judy McManus says:

    Dear Alison,
    I admire your courage and upbeat attitude. An amazing dream! This latest experience promises that you will feel normal again and these procedures will fade into the background in time. Joe and I have been thinking about you a lot; thanks for the update.

  4. Anna says:

    You’re a damn fine woman, Al. Don’t forget it!

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