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    If you have popped over here from my facebook page could you please add comments in the blog rather than on the link on facebook itself. I dont want to worry YD unnecessarily Thanks. You can now use your facebook log in so you dont need to enter extra details if you like
  • All about Gertrude

    Gertrude is the name we decided to call my cancerous breast hence the title of this blog. Although I had to keep my breast through chemo and radiation due to the nature of IBC - once it 'blew up' it no longer looked like my breast and I couldn't wait to get rid of it. Calling it Gertrude was a way of seperating it from myself. This main page is where I write about the general goings on that relate to Gertrude, there is another page that are more a diary of treatments etc This blog is a public blog so although I am being very honest about my battle with Gertrude I have "changed names to protect the innocent" - because everyone can see it if you write comments on the blog pages please use the same abbreviations for other family member or friends that I do. Please feel free to ask questions if you want clarification because then other people who might have been wondering the same thing can read your question and our answers.
  • Abbreviations

    OH- Other Half (Hubby), OD- Oldest Daughter, MD- Middle Daugher, YD- Youngest Daughter, SB- soulja boi MD's fiance in the army (now ex fiance), OD's R OD's partner, BS- Breast surgeon whose initials just happen to be BS as well, BC- our GP (family doctor), Dr H- my medical oncologist, all other friends family etc will be referred to as initials etc
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    No Princess Alone button


I almost called this post murphy’s law but then thought

a) that would jinx it

b) it would give you the impression that it was all bad news.

The Murphy law part of it –  anything that can go wrong will go wrong  – is just the little things that keep happening that stop me being able to relax.  After writing on Tuesday about the amount of energy I had, I woke on Wednesday morning full of a cold.  I can’t afford to be sick this close to my operation and so off to the doctor I went and sure enough I had a upper respiratory tract infection.  On more antibiotics!!!  I am still going away with YD this afternoon but will take things slowly if I need to. 

Yesterday morning I woke up and after putting a load of washing on, sat down at the computer and when I put my hand down by my leg – I scratched myself with my engagement ring  – puzzled as to why it was scratching me – I looked and found the large sapphire from the middle of my engagement ring had fallen out. 

Have retraced my steps yesterday morning and no sign of it, so we have a feeling that it has gone down the drain or is stuck in the drainage system of the washing  machine. 

As I was saying to OH, I cant help thinking that all these little things (the infection, my teeth, my cold, my ring) I don’t know whether its karma to balance the really good thing thats coming (remission after surgery) or whether its an omen for things to come. Silly thought I know, but the fact is you have all sorts of ludicrous thoughts go through your head at  a time like this.

Now on the upside – had a very useful and informative meeting with the Breast Surgeon and her nurse yesterday afternoon she is not happy that my portacath hasn’t completely healed but as long as it is not infected and continues to heal for the next 2 weeks surgery will go ahead……

Drumroll please……….Gertrude comes off on……….

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

We talked more about the surgery and what she will do.  Southern Cross will cover everything so that is really good.  She will take my whole breast off on the right side down to the chest wall and extending it under the arm to get the little roll of fat that is part of my breast there.  She will take out approximately 20 – 30 of the lymph nodes from under my arm leaving about 20 in place.

On the left side she will remove the benign fibroadenoma and do a reduction including liposuction of the little fat roll under that armpit.

They gave me the bra I have to wear after surgery plus my first prosthesis – its a little envelope filled with soft cushion wadding material.  This is what I will wear while I am healing

This is a picture of  the bra I had to buy to fit Gertrude in (the white one) and my new post- surgery C/D cup bra (black) Geez it looks tiny beside the white one.

before and after surgery bras

before and after surgery bras

I have decided to call my little cushion boob Cushla and when I get my silicone prosthesis it will be called Pruscilla (Pruscilla prosthesis or Cilla silicone).  Cushla looks quite big at the moment because they gave me extra filling so that after surgery I can play around with the filling levels and get it looking as close to possible to the left one.




A week after the surgery I should have the results of the histology after they have looked at everything under a microscope so here’s fingers,toes and everything crossed that it is all good news.

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  1. ning

     /  April 2, 2009

    aww man not fun for you (the teeth, ring etc) must be good to have a finalised plan for surgery etc for you tho.. and i will def be keeping my fingers crossed for u.. btw how long mite u have to stay in hosp 4??

  2. jayne

     /  April 2, 2009

    Gee, I have had a ‘crazy busy’ fortnight and hadn’t got a chance to stop in and see you although you are in my thoughts daily, even hourly.
    Can’t match your eventful week though, I’m sure you’ll find that stone, sooner then later I hope. By now you’ll be away with YD, hope you both have the time of your lives and just get rid of the cold and you’ll be all set.
    Love the bra cups (before and after). Prusella and Cushla, I love it..
    Catch u wen ya gt back.

  3. Sis M

     /  April 6, 2009

    Luv the way you name everything associated to Gertrude.
    I fully understand the impact on you of the statement Dr BC made, but rest assured we your extended family are so glad you were caught early and that you are still here being your usual chirpy self. IBC is something very few GP’s get to see so they don’t know what they are dealing with when they see it
    It is going to be quite different for you looking down at a somewhat smaller chest.
    Hope you have been able to shake your cold and rested a little while away with YD.
    Will catch you during the week, if you are’nt out gadding about.


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