Saturday, June 4, 2011

No Matter What

Well recovery has been a challenge. My body seemed to majorly rebel at being on a completely liquid diet. The fact that the antibiotic prescribed for me when I left the hospital was way too strong for me sure didn’t help. After just 3 doses, I knew I was going to have to worry about becoming dehydrated whether on a feeding tube or not. I stopped the antibiotic but dealt with the after effects for a couple of days. About the time that was starting to get better, I realized I had thrush in my mouth. The body was telling me to never take that particular antibiotic again! Tylenol continued to be helpful in keeping any pain under control but my mouth was very sore from the thrush.

We went back to Birmingham on Thursday for my follow-up appointment. My doctor had some not so good news. During surgery the pathologist had checked the borders the doctor removed and all seemed clear. However, when they did the more concise dissection of the tumor after surgery there were some cancer cells at the very bottom of the tumor. The doctor said we could trust the quick test done during surgery or he could go back in and remove another layer from the base to make sure no cells were left. He left the choice up to me. Of course, I told him I wanted to make sure there was none left. He said he was glad I made that decision because he could do it July 1. He wants me to have time to heal from the surgery I just had, and he will do it robotically again. I will have to use the Dynasplint again. By not eating by mouth for a week and with the tube hindering what I could get to my mouth, my jaw has gotten tight again. Actually, tighter than it was when I first started using the splint. I started back today with a lesser tension and only 2 minutes. I will have more time to build up gradually this time. The doctor also prescribed medication to stop the bad effects of the antibiotic on my body.

So on June 30th we will go back to Birmingham to let him do this procedure on July 1. (We said he really must like doing surgery on holiday weekends!) The nice thing about this time is I won’t have to have a feeding tube. He said I probably didn’t need it the first time as he was going by his experience with other patients. The speech pathologist actually came in the afternoon after my surgery and did a swallow test with water. She said I did very well. My doctor said I’ve probably learned to adapt well to changes in my mouth because of my previous oral surgeries. That may be so, but right now I’m ready for my mouth to not be sore and my jaw to loosen up so it’s not a chore to eat. I hope that my mouth will soon feel better from the thrush and the Dyansplint will again do its job!

Here’s a song I listened to on our trip to see my primary Birmingham doctor in March. I thought it was right on. Little did I know how right on it was until we were on our way home with a big decision to make. I had a lot of questions running through my mind, but the words that stopped the questions I had no answers for were “I trust You”…no matter what.