Snip Snip and Homecoming

I spoke with the plastic surgeon yesterday morning, and he said the little tear under my breast was normal and so was a little blood, so I shouldn’t worry about it. That was a relief. Since I had him on the phone, I asked him if there was anything I could do to ease the pain in the drain on my right side. He suggested taping it to my leg so that it wouldn’t pull every time I moved. I also asked about Neosporin with Pain Relief. He said he’d actually never heard of that, but I could give it a shot. So, I sent the hubs out for surgical tape and Neosporin.

After yesterday morning’s shower (in my own shower – stool would not fit so I did stand, which wasn’t as challenging as I thought it would be), my husband and I cleaned the drains and I set to work trying to tape the drain to my leg. Then we watched a movie. By the end of the movie, I had had enough with the excruciating drain pain that, by that point, was making it nearly impossible for me to move. I took some saline, gauze, and a nail scissor into our bedroom (I did not tell my husband what I was doing – this stuff freaks him out enough as it is). I cleaned the wound well (lots of dried guck and scab), washed the scissors with an alcohol wipe, and I took a breath – then I snipped that little damn thread clean off. And wow, did it feel good. I mean, instant relief. Realizing how much it helped me in getting up and sitting down, and just in general the relief, about an hour later I did the left one for good measure! I taped both tubes to my legs so that they wouldn’t pull out from their sites, even though I read that they’re so far in there that it’s nearly impossible that they’d come out.

Now, of course I realize this could be dangerous. For all I know now there is a little piece of thread hanging out in there now infecting my abdomen or my skin. Also I am a bit fearful that the doctor will be furious. But honestly, it will have been worth it. I feel a hundred times better! And as long as those drains stay put, I don’t think I should be any worse off. I’m supposed to be getting up and taking walks, and they were making it impossible. Now I can do so freely and get the exercise I need without all of the pain.

In other news, yesterday morning my father helped me pack up all of my belongings and he brought me home. Being in my own house was much more of a relief than I expected. As I said, being in my mother’s immaculate domestication, I had this vision of my own house as a cesspool. But of course it’s not. My husband has done a great job of keeping things rather tidy while also caring for our toddler 100% on his own.

Unfortunately, said toddler didn’t really seem excited that I was home. He really didn’t acknowledge me at all. This upset me a lot. My husband took him to school, and he and I spent the day watching movies (while I performed mini-surgeries on myself) and just hanging out. When he left in the afternoon to pick up our son, I had hoped perhaps for a greater reception upon his return home. But he still seemed pretty disinterested. He wanted to watch TV and he did sit next to me on the couch (not on my lap, but next to me) for a bit while hubs prepared dinner. It was only at bedtime that he reached out and wanted me to hold him. He gave me kisses and a big hug, and was very sad that I wouldn’t pick him up. But he calmed down immediately when my husband took him into his bedroom for his story. This makes me very anxious – I am hoping that over the next few weeks, he doesn’t come to learn that mommy is not going to comfort him anymore. I hope he doesn’t forget that bedtime is our special time. I hope he doesn’t learn that he can’t come to me to have his needs met – it’s true, but that’s only temporary.

Let me say a few words about hubs here, too. The day before I went into the hospital, I taught him how to scramble eggs and he managed to get hurt. He does not cook anything. I do all of the tidying up, although he is not a huge slob so it’s not like I pick up after him all day. He gets our son ready for school in the morning, but in the evenings, I pick him up from school, prepare dinner, feed him, bathe him, read him a story, and put him to sleep. I make his lunches, I get his backpack ready for school each evening. I am a very controlling person – I like things done my way. And hubs has done a great job in my absence; he really has. He has learned to prepare vegetable side dishes for all of the food I cooked and froze, he’s learned to make his lunches, and he’s generally kept our boy in good cheer. Our son is so happy, and even though I wish he’d take more interest in me, it’s clear he hasn’t been neglected, he’s been well taken care of, and his life hasn’t been disrupted.

But it has been hard for me and the hubs too. A month or so after I had our son, I sank into a severe post-pardum depression. I didn’t get out of bed much for almost three months. I had panic attacks that landed me in the ER, I lost almost 50 pounds from not being able to eat, and I spent most of the time crying. My doctor wanted to institutionalize me. The only thing that kept me going during that time was my husband. He was there for me the whole time, never questioned my behavior, never judged me, and he kept our household going (with a newborn, to boot) that whole time without any contribution from me. So I had complete faith that he’d be able to handle this situation with ease, because that one, we both agree, was infinitely harder. The difference now is that I’m mentally all here, and like I said, I’m controlling. So when I see that he’s left his gloves on the dining table, even though he’s been doing it all week while I was gone, and even though it doesn’t really matter in the scheme of things, I can’t help but ask him to put his gloves where they go. And because he’s been doing things his way for a week and they’ve both survived, he doesn’t really want me now telling him what to do. I’m sitting here watching him take care of our son and our house, and all I can do is critique or advise from my spot on the couch. But I do need to have order. Since my body is in complete disarray right now, I feel that the least I can expect is that my house is in order – this keeps me mentally in order, which really is more important than physical order, I’ve always believed. So there’s definitely been a little strain since I’ve been home, but I’m hoping that soon I’ll be able to contribute a bit more and won’t just be that nagging voice from the couch.


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