Okay, this is where it gets funny. It's about a week before my surgery and I get a call from this guy who says he's Dr. S' partner and Dr. S had taken ill, so he is going to do this lumpectomy if it's alright with me, and if I'm not comfortable with that and say no, he would understand. I think I said something to the effect of, "I assume you can cut on anything he can, so I'm fine with you, go ahead." I only asked that he come to pre-op before I'm pumped with meds so I can meet the man who will be cutting on me. He laughingly agreed.
So, day of surgery. My sister-in-law takes me to the hospital where I do all the registration stuff and get a bed in pre-op. A nurse comes in and tells me to go to the radiology department, where another ultrasound is going to be done for the surgeon to use when he goes in. I think they said something about a wire, which will leave a path for the surgeon. Yeah, yeah, OK, whatever, you lost me at "Radiology".
Some of the minutiae here is vague - sorry, it's been a few years - but I'm sure my breast was numbed, the ultrasound machine was moved to the perfect spot the radiologist wanted, and a tech moved in to hold the thing absolutely still so the radiologist could thread a wire through my breast and into the lump. Yikes, right? The description is worse than the actual event was, I promise. What I remember most about this is, I was freezing. Why do they keep hospitals so frigging cold?
So, that's done. A nurse says to me, repeatedly, "DON'T MOVE!" Now come in here, we need to take a couple of pictures." I manage to get up off the table without jarring the EIGHTEEN INCHES of wire hanging out my right breast and shuffle into this other room which contains....you guessed it...a mammography machine. Yes ladies and gentlemen, the breast that just had a wire stuck in it is now going to be flattened like only a mammogram can. While I was standing there, arm up, boob down, I ask the tech, "Does anyone else see the humor in the fact that I am not allowed to bump this wire, but you all are allowed to maneuver it into a mammography machine?!" Apparently, I was in fact the only person who was entertained by the absurdity. Either that, or she was just a cranky bitch who hated her job.
Anyway, she's done with me and can now protect the wire from jostling by....you're not gonna believe this...seriously....you're gonna laugh out loud...taping a Styrofoam coffee cup to the side of my breast with medical tape.
Now, return to pre-op where I regale my sister-in-law with the details of the trip up to radiology. We wait for awhile, so I take my glasses off and close my eyes to nap. After not too long, the curtain to my little area opens, and the. most. beautiful. man. in. the. world. enters and says, "Hello Ms. Pappas, I'm Dr. Knockyoursocksoff, I'll be doing your surgery today. Do you have any questions about anything?" I was abolutely not capable of actual speech, but I'm pretty sure I grunted out a "Nuh-uh" before he said, "OK, let's do this!", turned on his heel and was gone. My sister-in-law and I turned to one another with our mouths hanging open like a couple of fools, right? Then she leans over and whispers in my ear. "I want what you have."
Immediately a nurse comes in holding a piece of paper with two stickers on it - Red means No and Green means Yes - and instructs me to place them on my breasts to prevent the surgeon from cutting the wrong one. Being the smart ass I usually am, and not having learned my lesson with the radiology tech, I said, "EXCUSE ME, but is the Styrofoam cup and wire not enough of a clue?" Yep, she liked that. At least somebody other than me had a sense of humor.
Epilogue to follow, if you care...