Friday, February 17, 2012

Wherein all cards go on the table

Otay, Buttwheat.
The visit yesterday went well, albeit difficult for Doc & me.

He came in the room w/ his resident (not the one who assisted) & said "let's take a look!" & when I dropped my gown "Great! That looks great!"
My face (always known for my ability to *not* hide what I'm feeling/ thinking despite those decades in theatre) did a big ol' huge "WTF??!!" look, followed by me saying "REALly??!"

Thus it began.
In brief, up front, I must state that he took almost an hour out of his clinical day to stay & talk with me, which I know from my own career, wreaks havoc on one's scheduling that day in the clinic.
But he didn't want to walk away until we had come to some understanding without animosity.
And he had absolutely none of the ego & deflection that I had been pre-projecting onto him.

Over the course of our talk I said everything I wanted to say, &, actually, a bit more.
I wasn't planning on sharing that I am not going to be taking the belly dancing lessons I bought on Groupon because I didn't want to be seen in a costume looking like this. (nor was I expecting to tear up when I said that)

He was honestly shocked at my response. He said he has done almost 400 of these procedures & I am the only one who has had this bad a reaction to the outcome.
I responded by saying yes, I am sure that's true, but most women don't see as many women's breasts as I do.
For years I have worked on women post implant, to decrease encapsulation, post all kinds of breast surgeries, to decrease lymphatic stasis, post lift/ reduction surgery to minimize appearance of scar tissue, & that I had never seen scars as extensive as mine.

At the end of the day he apologized twice for not communicating more clearly.
(I suggested that he draw the scar-to-be on women in the office, before surgery, to let them look at it head on in the mirror, to decide if it is something we can live with.
If I see it & say yes, then it's all on me.)

He *assured me* that the head-of-Stewie shape will drop over the next 3-6 months & match the left shape.
Ok. Possible.
But I was/ am very concerned & the football in my armpit. He says it will drop medially, back into the breast tissue proper.
I expressed my strong doubts about that, to which he replied that he was sincerely sorry, again, & that if I was still unhappy with the appearance by August, that he would go in on the last 2 inches of the scar, near my armpit, & remove the tissue, at no cost.
He said "I will work with you until you are pleased with the outcome. Of course, a scar is a scar; I can't remove that..."

But a friend did suggest some laser therapy later, which is a good idea.

I left the office, feeling satisfied that he had really heard me.
I ate lunch with my friend who went with me, then went home & slept like a rock for four hours.

Later that afternoon, Doc called me at home to say that because we had spent our time talking about what we needed to (good for him!) that he did not address that fact that he was a little concerned about the left scar reddening a bit.
He told what to keep an eye out for & to call immediately if I saw any changes.
Than, before signing of he said "I am glad that we talked today, Ms. Daniels. Are you ok?"

My opinion is softening.

Yes, as I told him, it will take a while to rebuild my trust in him, but I see that he is truly sorry and wants to do the right thing by me *in my eyes*.

Meanwhile, I am still on massive decompress mode: exhausted as all get out.

It is a nice, cold, rainy day.
Perfect for napping on the couch.
 Au revoir, my lovelies...


SBloom said...

What a lovely unexpected response from the surgeon - generally, seen as some of the most arrogant docs. Does not change what the aftermath of the surgery looks like right now, but let's just hope he is being truthful and accurate about what happens in the healing process. You may be a very, very good lesson for him; not necessarily comforting for you, but a gain for him. Keep well and good healing.

d smith kaich jones said...

what sbloom said. i feel better for you.


Linda Teddlie Minton said...

Oh wow. I'm kind of glad I didn't see your previous post until just before reading this one. I'm pulling for your full recovery, Skye, with all the assurances that your doctor has made coming true. Big hugs to you.

mrs mediocrity said...

I am so glad that you told him how you feel. And even more glad that his response was encouraging.
I think doctor's don't always prepare us ahead of time because they don't have an understanding of where we come from. They know what things will be like, and they forget that we don't.
I also wish there were more female surgeons, especially for this sort of thing.
I know how hard it is to allow yourself the time to rest, especially when you have a business to get back to. Rest when you can, as much as you can.
Sending hugs.

Jules said...

You visited my blog and left such a sweet comment, thank you so much. I have just been reading your posts - bless you , I am sending you m lots of positive healing thoughts and loads of good wishes.x