If Theresa May was having a bad start to the day, I was feeling more hopeful: my hospital bag was packed; iPad fully-loaded with films; childcare arranged. Hell, I’d even written A farewell letter to my boob. I was ready.
The positive vibe continued after arriving on the ward: the nurse told me I was first on the list (that never happens) and I had been allocated to a private room (that never happens). By 8.30am I was in my gown and compression stockings (sexy), had been ‘marked up’ by my surgeon (i.e. she’d scribbled all over my right boob with black pen) and I’d even managed to share a crap joke with the anaesthetist who seemed to share my gallows humour (they always do).
Then my blood test results came back.
The surgeon came back to see me with a grim look on her face. She explained that my white blood cell levels were too low to proceed with surgery. White blood cells help your body fight infection; too few of them and your body can’t defend itself against infection post-surgery. Chemotherapy’s to blame for my paltry levels – it destroys white blood cells temporarily. Then your body makes more and your levels ‘bounce back’. But mine were seemingly too bloody knackered after six cycles of chemo to be bothered. I know how they feel.
It may seem odd to get upset over not having one’s boob surgically removed, but at this point I just wanted the tumour gone. So obviously I burst into tears. And then removed my surgical stockings and threw them onto the floor. That’ll show them.
Then I got dressed, tried ineffectually to rub the black marks off my chest, and got back in the car with my long-suffering husband for the grumpy drive home (stopping off at B&Q on the way to buy the sodding smoke alarm that I’ve been nagging about for the past two weeks).
My surgeon is (of course) away next week so my operation will now be delayed for a fortnight. I’m sure I will muster enough energy to psych myself up again, but seriously – why is nothing ever straight-forward?