Back to the Grindstone

Yesterday, I returned to work. While every other transition in this recovery has worried other people more than I,this one concerned me. Partly it was just guilt over not being able to help my coworker do any of the lifting that would take up most of the final 45 minutes of our shift. But I also knew that returning to this job after even a three day break can be rough- your script isn’t up to snuff,and then of course there’s the audience. I knew that if I got heckled first thing, there was a good chance I might break down. Then add to all of this the incredible fatigue I’ve been feeling, sleeping around 12 hours every night, which apparently will keep happening for another month or two.

However, things went just fine. I had been told to arrive whenever I wanted; my shift technically started at 10, but Jackie told me I could show up at 2 if I wanted. In the end, though, I had to get there at 10 to provide some supplies, and I ended up being able to work through the entire day without feeling super tired, which makes me feel SO much better about working on my own when I can lift things again. But I definitely have to wait for that- at one point, I was slicing a particularly dense onion, and felt a twinge in my left breast, and by the end of the day, I was pretty sore. I really hate not being able to do things on my own, but since my just-the-facts-ma’am surgeon told me not to lift anything over ten pounds, I know she means it. But I’m healing very well, so that’s good. 

A lot of psychologists and people in general get concerned about older women getting reductions (or other body-altering surgeries) because it’s difficult to accept your new body. I was worried this would happen to me, especially because it did when I lost 40 pounds; it was hard to see myself as this new person. But in this case, I don’t feel that way. I feel like I’m finally in the body I’m supposed to be in. For the first time since I was 12, I don’t have to wear a bra. I noticed how much taller I was walking last night; it feels really weird in my spine, since I’ve spent the last ten years hunched over, hiding my boobs. But it does feel good to finally have more physical confidence.

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