It’s hard work, all of this ‘recovery’ business!
It’s now 9 weeks since I went in to hospital and 7 weeks since I got out. I’m starting to feel a little bit better.
Each day I have to do a whole stream of exercises for my shoulder, which I must repeat multiple times throughout the day. Some days it’s too sore to do anything with it but I try to do what I can. I also must stretch my jaw, which is really painful because of the huge ulcer (?) just behind my back teeth that hurts every time I open my mouth. I’ve had it for about 6 weeks now and it is tiring.
I have ongoing appointments with surgeons, oncologists, doctors, dietitians, speech and language therapists… Not to mention many scans. Including another dreaded MRI last Friday (more on that soon).
Not being able to breathe through my nose is tiring too. I was expecting it would get better, but I found out a couple of weeks ago that it was intentionally blocked off and maybe in about a year they’ll look to see if they can do anything to clear it. I can’t really deal with processing that information. Not being able to breathe through your nose is really not nice even for one day, let alone a year. My mouth and throat are constantly dry and burning. I also found out that they took a nerve out in my face and as a result, my mouth will remain drooped on the right hand side. Again, in a year they’ll probably do something to hoist it up a bit.
Also my cheek is attached to the flap. So like… Imagine your cheek was superglued to your teeth for most of the top jaw of your mouth (obviously I have no teeth but that’s how far the flap extends). I keep biting the right hand side of my cheek every time I try to bite anything. Also almost the whole roof of my mouth is filled in to teeth level with flap too. That’s a lot of stuff taking up space in there. Added with not being able to open my mouth very wide. Eating is hard work.
Finally, aside from this is the bloody neuropathy which took a turn for the worst after hospital. The pain was regular and at times unbearable. Every night in bed, the sheets felt like they were stabbing my feet with knives. I would be crying out in pain, it was agonising. Thankfully I managed to sleep through it at times but it would keep me awake until I did, and whenever I woke up, there it was again. It has calmed down in the past couple of weeks. I’m hoping it stays away.
I’ve also lost a lot of hearing in my right ear… Not sure what that’s about.
I’m also weak, I tire easily, and have been tackling a cold over the last week.
So that’s me.
But I’m alive. And the swelling is definitely going down, and my hair getting bushy. I’m even thinking about going back to work soon (if I don’t have to go back into surgery again instead, but more on that soon).
Anyway, here are some progress shots for anyone who hasn’t seen them yet – it’s amazing to see how far I’ve come: