Just a few updates:
Surgery went well.
I went in early early, which was probably a bonus because I am NOT a morning person. It's hard to get worried about stuff when you're barely awake. The nurse prepping me said I looked like I was going to be a troublemaker (well! I never!) and I told her no, my one sister is an RN and if she heard I was naughty she'd fly over here and personally kick my ass. I don't recall much prior except climbing onto the operating table and my gown falling off. One of the nurses went to cover me up and I told her not to bother, half of Africa has seen me naked by now and everyone in the room would in a few minutes. I find this sort of fatalism a good coping method. It actually took an hour less than projected, which is nice because we got a refund from the estimate.
I actually enjoyed being in a nice facility being pampered for a day while I was monitored - air conditioning and an all-cartoon tv channel! The nurses were apparently very impressed with how well I rebounded from anesthesia, which is one of my many useless superpowers. Last time I had surgery, I woke up in the recovery room and helped the nurses solve a crossword puzzle. This time they were praising me for sitting up and walking down the hall without being woozy, and I said I haven't been praised so much for exhibiting basic motor skills since I was a baby. I can even eat with a fork and use three-word sentences! The only annoying things were the pulse ox monitor beeping every time I started falling asleep, due to my sleep apnea. I would shout down the hall, "I'm not dead" but of course they still had to check. And then when I finally did fall asleep, the night nurse woke me up for meds and I opened my eyes to see a stranger leaning over me in the darkness, face lit from below by the monitors. It's amazing I didn't have a heart attack XD
Recovery has been slow but steady. I only had the drains in for a few days, which is good because they're gross as heck and the cats were convinced they were really neat toys I was cruelly not letting them play with. The sutures are healing quite well, although removing the tape the check of them pulled the six chest hairs I've managed to grow right out. Dang it. The only problem I'm having right now, aside from the usual tiredness and recovery pains, is there's a build-up of fluid at the site, and I keep having to go in to the clinic to get it drained, which involves a freaking HUGE and very painful needle being shoved in various places and the gunk being sucked out. It's godawful painful, and afterwards I'm nauseous and soaked with sweat. Right now I have to sleep with a 2-kilo bag of rice on my chest to keep compressing it out.
I've been trying to take it easy and not do too much work, but hopefully I'll be easing back in soon. Thanks for all the kind comments, you sweethearts!