It's a creekmore world

Week # 19: Goldilocks and the Titty Docs: A tough reconstruction decision.

But the loss of a latisimus dorsi, could make trapeze difficult.  It’s an important muscle when you stablilize yourself swinging from the flying trapeze.  And since she shattered her L4-5 vertebrae in a car accident at 22, she sufferes from back problems a lot.  Having muscles taken out can’t help that.

On the other hand, going without the latissimus flap, it is very unlikely that she can reconstruct boobs.  It’s not like she would be flat-chested, there would be scarring and a slight depression where the cancer boob was.  It would make her feel disfigured, but she would keep her back intact.

Cancer laughs at us.

Trish doesn’t have a lot of time to decide what’s right for her. We need to choose a surgeon and reserve the operating room in the next day or so.

Assuming Trish survives long term, and she stands a very sold chance of doing that, this will be the legacy of her breast cancer. She will either feel disfigured, or (possibly) suffer from back pain and diminished enjoyment of favorite activities: dance and trapeze.   Fuck you too, cancer.

Breasts are big and hot (topic, that is)

Sheyla Hershey wtf?
Ok, that pic is ridiculous.  She’s a circus freak.  But what about the opposite? Is not having breasts a disfigurement? How far can a woman go to change her breasts before she is chastised for being vain and skin-deep? Is an older woman wrong for wanting to replace saggy tits? A younger one wanting to prevent them?

Should anyone give a shit what other people think?

In the 24 hours we have to choose a plan for the reconstruction, these thoughts roll through our head. Cosmetic breast enhancement, elective or otherwise, has made foobs an opinion magnet. Everyone has, strong feelings about what’s appropriate, beautiful, and necessary.

Heidi
To some, fake breasts are a reflection of your inner, deepest character.  It’s a decision open to more scrutiny and judgement than personal hygene, clothing and behavior combined. Sure, people criticize Heidi Montag’s childish behavior, but what really gives us a window into her soul, is her decision about breast enhancement.

Someone could get liposuction, go endlessly to a personal trainer, color her hair, and not be judged the same way. But somehow breasts bring out our moral compass, probably because they are connected to sex, about which people are often self-righteous.

A vulnerable Tink.  Taken before we knew the cancer returned.
We consider this, not because her (our) decision is based on what people think. Trish will do what Trish wants, and she isn’t going to apologize to anyone for it. But even if you are as confident as Trish, thoughts like these float through your head.

The decision

I post on a breast cancer board and the facebook page for our trapeze school to see if anyone has recovered from the latissimus dorsi removal and still does trapeze.  We get a few nice comments but no one responds with any concrete information.

Trish decides to go with the flap.

It’s a rational decision, but difficult nonetheless.  Basically, disfigurement is nearly certain without the flap, but we think she has a decent chance to swing on the trapeze again.   People regain their golf swing, do complicated yoga and swim competitively.

I'll miss these.  Been glad to know you, rightie.  Lefty, you can suck a bag of dicks.

When I call the doctor, I check about physical therapy, and yes insurance will cover it until Trish has the strength and range of motion she wants.  I buy her this book on post-mastectomy rehabilitation, which is now by her bedside.

She moves onward, courageously.  If anyone has the ability to rehabilitate like that it’s Trish.  She knows how to go past the pain point to build and stretch muscle.  She did it after her broken back to learn how to dance again.    She’ll do it this time too.

101 surprises 86-90

OMG only 10 to go for the 101st surprise?  What will it be?  Would you trade it for $500 like ‘Let’s Make a Deal?’   Or will it be something sappy and stupid?

I think the shoes are out of control.
86) The shoes come out of the closet: I bought Trish a ton of shoes this summer, (about 15 pair I think? I lost count.)  And she already had dozens piled up on the floor of her closet.  With a trip to The Container Store and a little elbow grease, I organized them and gave away all the unusable pairs.

87) A new dishwasher: This really is a surprise, because it hasn’t arrived yet.  Generally, I cook the food and she cleans the kitchen. But after cleaning the kitchen all summer for her, I have come to the conclusion that our dishwasher is a piece of crap.  I’m buying her a new one where every dish doesn’t have to be scrubbed before and after dishwashing to look clean.  I’m going with this highly rated, inexpensive model.

88) A rebuilt computer:  When Trish really started getting into Warhammer, she slowly took-over my special gaming computer because she likes the huge screen.  Well the jokes on her because that computer’s operating system is so messed up it won’t run programs anymore (except Chrome and Warhammer, weird right?).  I bought her an expensive solid state drive and will rebuild the damn thing while she is in the hospital.

nude Mammio
89) Nude Louboutons: I hadn’t planned on buying anymore shoes, but she kept saying that all she wanted was a pair of nude shoes.  How can I deny her?  We tried on a few pair at Miu Miu in Soho, but they didn’t fit right.  These Louboutons were attractively priced on Ebay (new) and have the see-through mesh and high heel, but oxford styling for that sexy librarian look.  Where are those horn-rimmed glasses?

90)  A big piece of meat: Trish likes her beef, so I get us several steaks, roasts and burgers from this great grass-fed, organic beef ranch on the East Coast.  Here is an article from the WSJ reviewing five different mail order grass-fed beef.   The beef is amazing. well-priced and shipping to the East coast is inexpensive from North Carolina.  The burgers taste gamey and the Delmonico steak grills up beefy and flavorful.  Check out this slate review in which grass-fed beef beats all others for flavor.  Grass-fed beef is a little leaner, so delmonico’s aren’t as fatty.  They cook more like a NY strip.  And cook the burgers rare, you won’t regret it.

4 thoughts on “Week # 19: Goldilocks and the Titty Docs: A tough reconstruction decision.

  1. Aviva

    Such a beautiful photo of Trish from the back. A real treasure for your children to have for years to come. Kudos to you guys for seeing the beauty and the humor in this otherwise bleak situation. I can’t imagine anyone going through this ordeal with as much care and flair and fun. Much love to both of you. Viv

  2. Kelly Kubsch

    I have come to the conclusion that the Creekmores are the most amazing family I’ve seen. Staying as optimistic as possible through life changing events such as these is truly great to see. You guys are winning this battle in a way I’m sure many wish they could. Keep it up! :)

  3. Clare

    After reading this entry I feel like such a “boob” for casually posting an inquiry on Trish’s wall about her eventual choice of a cup size.

    All I can say is that you guys are amazing and inspiring, and Trish is in my thoughts every day.

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