Friday, August 31, 2012

Mother-in-Law's Surgery....

Mother-in-law finally had her surgery today, and it went fine. That's the most important part.

I was going to regale (?) you with the details of just how many doctor's office visits this entailed, how many times we had to go to each NEW doctor, how much closer to the heart of downtown Atlanta we got with each successive trip, blah, blah, blah, blah.

Instead, I'll give you the (mercifully) short version.

Mother-in-law told her doctor at her regular visit back in early summer that she couldn't wear her upper dentures anymore because of a "spot" in the roof of her mouth. The first oral surgeon she saw biopsied and determined it to be a benign mass, but something that needed to come out. He sent her to an ENT specialist, who agreed that the mass needed to come out, then reported that "the cancer" was now in the bone.

Excuse me? I thought by definition a benign mass couldn't be cancer. But what do I know?

I may be just a little bit in love with this particular doctor, by the way. He is about ten years old and can't possibly have completed high school, much less medical school, and he has a sense of humor and talks to people like they are ... people.

The good news is that while the mass is cancerous, it is not the kind that spreads, so mother-in-law won't need any kind of treatments.

The bad news is that they removed 40% of the roof of her mouth today. I suppose there are WORSE things to have 40% of removed, but right now I can't think of any.

Chalk up my brain fog to the fact that I got up at 3:00 AM, spent 13 hours at the hospital, and sat in not just Atlanta rush hour traffic, but Atlanta rush hour traffic on a Friday afternoon before a long holiday weekend. We just got home. "We" as in me, Hubby, and Hubby's sister. Yes, her. But this isn't about me.

The OTHER good news is that because mother-in-law already has a denture plate, the prosthodontist (who knew there WAS such a profession?) can use what she already has to cover the resulting hole in her head. Please don't tell her I said that. I'm a little punchy.

I hope with every cell of my being that I can be as tough as my mother-in-law when I'm 82 years old. She came through the surgery fine, although she had to stay in recovery for 5 hours due to fluid in her lungs (but not pneumonia) and a lower-than-optimal oxygen level. There is absolutely nothing wrong with her mind, and she was even able to talk and make jokes through her pain. We opted NOT to stay with her overnight, which has caused all three of us some degree of guilt. The young, cute, sweet, funny, handsome ... oh, I already said "cute" ... doctor even said it's possible she could come home tomorrow if all goes well tonight. And believe me, mother-in-law will MAKE it go well.

I'm that kind of tired where it feels like I have sand under my eyelids and I want to cry over silly things like a pack of crackers being stale. But I'm glad the procedure is over, and I'm glad my mother-in-law is on the mend. I'm not quite ready to give her up yet.

1 comment:

DJan said...

I am so glad to hear it went well. It seems like almost everybody I know is having a pretty hard time of it right now. I'm moving, and everything in the apartment is upside down, and pieces are being moved into the new place bit by bit. Sunday the strong backs arrive for the heavy lifting. I know how it feels to be punchy like that, crying at every little thing...