A Busy Day

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Hello all!

Well, it was the last day of my so-called vacation (sigh), but at least I managed to get outside of my house for the first time since last Thursday.

And what did I do on my first field trip, you ask?

Well, let me tell you all about it! :c)


My sister was nice enough to act as my chauffeur, as I'm not supposed to be driving quite yet.

We first paid a visit to the doctor first for a follow-up. And happily, she was pleased with my overall progress.

She told me I didn't need the walking boot any longer, and provided me with a brace to wear instead that will give the ankle some needed support.

She also released my right wrist from the tyranny of the sling and removable cast. I've used a wrist brace for many years as a result of the repeated fractures of, and damage to, that wrist. She is concerned about possible permanent damage to the nerves in my arm, so I need to wear the brace while typing for the indefinite future.

She recommended that I not drive for long periods, because of the strain it would put on my wrist in particular. So I suspect I will work at home tomorrow.

My friend and co-worker B has kindly offered to drive me to and from work if I get approval to work in our headquarters on Thursday and Friday, which I suspect won't be an issue. It will be nice to get out of the house, quite honestly.

So overall, the visit went as well as I could have reasonably hoped. Therefore, I decided to celebrate the way most people do when they get good news:

With a two hour session of laser and electrolysis. Of course.

(Please contain your jealousy, if you would.)

***

Actually, I had set up a two-hour session with M last week, since I knew I would be off today.

I considered canceling, but my sister C made a good point.

"You can spend two hours laying on your couch or bed at home," she said, "Or you can spend it getting rid of that stupid facial hair. Either way you're going to be on your back the entire time. So why not do something productive."

I could hardly argue with *that* logic. :c)

I carefully hobbled up the three flights to M's office, since the elevator was out of service (naturally). She was waiting for me when I arrived, and immediately noticed my limp and the brace on my wrist.

She was shocked when I told her what had happened, but told me she had a nice surprise waiting for me at the end of the session.

"So c'mon in, Cass, and let's get started!" she said.

Truth be told, I was a bit nervous about this session.

The first time she used laser did not go as well as I had hoped.

Quite honestly, I freaked out a bit - as soon as I realized that the source of that pungent, burnt smell was, in fact, me.

I resolved that I was going to be brave the next time, and not flinch. I slathered on the Lidocaine before my visit, and took some Advil as well.

M said she wanted to start with the laser, to speed along the deforestation (as April refers to it). She had given me a pillow to hold to offer some support to my wrist.. but truth be told, I was clutching it as tightly as I could from nerves.

M asked me if I was ready. I took a deep breath and nodded yes.

"We'll start on your chin, Cass," she said, applying ice to it. "We want to get rid of these nasty black ones here!"

Usually I would smile and say something back, but not this time. I had my eyes squeezed as tightly as I could.

"Here we go, Cass," she said, and administered the first charge.

My entire body flinched, but I fought off the overwhelming urge to jump up and run out of the office.

"Good girl!" she said. "Let's try the other side of your chin."

She administered the second charge. I flinched a second time. And once again, I wanted nothing more than to escape.

 But somehow I willed myself to remain.

M finished holding the ice to my upper lip. She started to say she was ready, when suddenly she stopped.

"Cass, are you all right?" she asked gently.

"Well... I'm kind of nervous," I admitted. My voice sounded strained.

"I can tell," she said. "You're shaking like a leaf right now, hon."

She was right. My entire body was trembling. I didn't realize how wound up I was.

I apologized, and said I would try to do better.

"Hon, you don't ever have to apologize," she said, rubbing my arm. "This is so, so hard, and so, so painful. I know it is. You need to give yourself credit. You're really scared, and you're letting me do this anyway."

"I promise I would never hurt you intentionally. But I also promise that this will make things go much faster down the line. It will. You have to trust me."

"I do," I said. "Like I said the last time, if Kelli and April and Stace and my other friends could do this, then I can too."

"Good girl!" she said. "I'm so, so proud of you right now, Cass. I really, truly am."

And I knew she meant it.

"Are you ready to start again?" she asked me.

I took a deep breath and nodded.

"OK," she said with a smile. "Here we go."

We went through another 20 or so pulses. I flinched each and every time. And after each and every time M would rub my arm, squeeze my hand, and tell me what a good job I was doing.

When it was finally over, I was so relieved that the next two hours of electrolysis around my upper lip and chin seemed tame in comparison. I didn't even mind the constant runny nose and watering eyes.

And when the two hours were over, I had survived.

My chin, amazingly, was nearly clear. It will still need a great deal of followup work in the months ahead, but I can see the progress we made during those two hours.

And hopefully the next time will be a little better.

And the one after that a bit better still.

And so on.

Until I finally reach my goal.

***

At the end of the session, M said it was time for me to see my surprise.

She reached into the closet and pulled out what was clearly an expensive black sweater.

"What do you think, Cass?" she asked.

"It's gorgeous," I said. "Why haven't I seen you wear it? You're always dressed so stylishly (which she is), I'm surprised you don't wear it more often."

"I've had it for a year or so," she said, "But now I want to clear some things from my closet. So... I want you to have it."

I was stunned.

"Really? Are you sure?"

She mock-slapped me on my left arm.

"Of course I'm sure, silly girl! I think it will look really cute on you. Here - try it on!"

I did. M whistled, which made me laugh.

"That settles it!" she said. "L (her daughter, who works in the office with her, and who knows about me) told me she wants to go through her closets to see what she has that might work for you. You're both about the same size, and she has some beautiful clothes.

"I told her I'd see if you were interested, but now I'm telling you that you don't have a choice. You're taking anything she has that you're interested in, and that's that!"

I know better than to cross someone who wields a laser for a living, so I simply said OK, and thank you. :c)

Guess I'd better clear out the back seat before next week's session!

***

There was one final, lovely moment before my sister arrived to pick me up.

I was in the waiting room putting my sneakers back on. I always take them off before I climb on the table, as it makes me feel more comfortable.

M was in her small side office entering some notes. I heard her emerge from the room while I was bent over attempting to tie a know using approximately 1 and 1/3 hands. Not an easy task.

A moment later,  she spoke.

"Cass?" she said.

"Mm-hmm?" I said, fumbling with the shoelaces again.

"Cass. Look up at me, hon."

I looked up. She regarded my face for a few moments.

"You've changed since last week, you know," she said.

 "I have?"

She nodded.

"How?"

She studied my face a moment more.

"You glow," she said finally.

I didn't know what to say.

"I do?" I asked, dubious. "What do you mean?"

"I mean that you glow."

"Are you talking about my skin? I *am* paler than normal. If that's possible."

"No," she said.

 "Oh, then it must be the drugs they gave me last week," I joked.

She didn't laugh.

"No, it isn't the drugs, sweetie," she said. "This is coming from inside you."

I was turning red, as I do at the slightest hint of embarrassment.

"Well, now I *am* glowing," I said.

"No, now you're blushing *and* glowing," she said, smiling.

"You're becoming yourself more and more every time I see you, Cass. And it's happening faster and faster.

"And THAT is why you're glowing."

This time I didn't need the elevator or the stairs to reach the first floor.

I just floated. :c)

***
Speaking of floating, that reminds me of this great U2 song from their now-legendary Red Rocks show in 1983. I was fortunate enough to see them for the first time a few weeks after this show (yes, I am really, really old), and can attest first-hand to what a powerhouse live band they are. And this is still one of my favorite U2 songs.

4 comments:

LeAnne on January 30, 2013 at 9:00 AM said...

I enjoy reading the events in a person's life when they are transitioning. I find it to be more personable as if we are talking face to face like two friends would normally do

I'm glad to hear that you are are surviving from the horrible events of the recent past and I'm wishing you the best in your ' glowing ' future.

Cassidy on January 30, 2013 at 11:17 AM said...

Thank you, LeAnne! I still say the glow is from those painkillers I was taking... lol

== Cass

Stace on February 2, 2013 at 4:06 AM said...

Well done on the Laser - it is one of the most painful things have ever done. Especially around the nose! I normally take a couple of paracetemol before leaving the house. I'm not sure how much it helps - but even if it's only a placebo I'd rather do that than nothing :)

And I'm sure the glow is from more than the painkillers!

Stace

Cassidy on February 2, 2013 at 6:55 PM said...

Thank you so much, Stace. I really did tell M, my electrologist, that if my friends - which includes you, of course! - could do it, then I could too. So, thank you for giving me the courage I needed. And will need.

I agree about laser; it hurts *so* much! I can tolerate electrolysis fairly well, but laser is on another level altogether. I don't think I will ever get used to it.

She worked on my upper lip and chin; I didn't think my nose could run, nor my eyes water, for two consecutive hours... but I was wrong. lol On the plus side, my chin, while it looks like raw hamburger, is now nearly clear. Yea!!!

Thank you again, sweetie!

Hugs,
Cass

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