Surgery is complete! And despite my anxiety going into it, everything went smoothly.
I arrived at MGH a little before 6am (a big thank you to the special folks who sent a car service for me) and promptly went into pre-op.
The needle localization procedure that I dreaded was first, and while it hurt a bit, it wasn't nearly as bad as I'd thought. I had some Ativan in me to calm me down, and I listened to the relaxation tape throughout. Both helped. And now I know why you have to be awake for this procedure: it involves standing up at a mammogram machine, and while your breast is compressed in the device, the doctor threads two thin wires through it to localize the califications for surgical removal. You then leave with the wires sticking out of your chest. Good times.
I then went back to my room where I watched tv and took a nap before the lumpectomy and lymph dissection. I barely remember going into that procedure, because I (thankfully) received anethesia for this part of it. The next thing knew it was about 6pm and my parents joined me in the recovery room. Dr. Specht was her usual upbeat self, indicating everything went according to plan and that she was really pleased with the outcome.
We got home to my parents' house at about 8pm last night (I slept the whole way) and after a quick bite I went to bed.
A bit grossed out by the drain in my side that removes fluid from the surgical site, but I'm getting used to it. I'll spare you the real-world picture and share this image instead: the egg-shaped plastic piece hangs from a thin tube that is attached to the incision. It fills with fluid throught the day, and I (and by "I" - I mean "my mom") have to empty it out morning and night. When the fluid output is <30cc (usually after a week) the drain can be removed.
It will also take about a week to get the pathology report back on my tumor.
But for now I just relax and heal (and wait for my hair to start growing again!), until I go back in to meet with my oncologist on July 9th and find out my radiation schedule.
Thank you, again, for all the kind words, care packages, well wishes, wish bracelet and prayers...they really worked!