What To Know About Top Surgery

What They Don't Tell You About Top Surgery

Top surgery was anything but rainbows and sunshine.

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November 23, 2016, the very day before Thanksgiving, the day I seemed to have waited for my whole life was finally here; I was getting my top surgery. I got my top surgery date 3 months or so prior and every day I would jump out of bed eager to change the countdown I had going on a whiteboard.

Once it got down to single digits the days seemed endless. But it was finally here, it was finally happening. I remember laying on the gurney waving goodbye to my nervous mother and best friend as they wheeled me away. I burst into an extremely brightly lit room, the light hurt my eyes and caused me to squint, when I opened them back up I was directly underneath the largest light I had ever seen, it was blinding and intimidating. Suddenly a nervous rush washed over me as a nurse instructed me to count back from 10 while she was giving me anesthesia.

This was it, it felt as if someone had stood me up and slowly dipped me into a warm bath of water. Here we go, my last breath, my last thoughts as a man with a chest. As the water began to consume me, everything went black.

When I wake, I'll be free.

I woke up to the same nurse patting my cheek telling me I "really needed to stay awake this time, Logan." I couldn't grasp consciousness. I kept sinking in and out. Everything was groggy and I was completely unaware of everything that was going on in my world. I felt different, I couldn't open my eyes or come to reality but I knew, I felt free. I felt like I could breathe for the first time and I hadn't even looked down yet. When I could finally stand on my own two feet I braced myself for the uncomfortable 3 hour car ride home from Albany.

Uncomfortable is such an understatement, but I didn't care: I was free.

I remember snapchatting all my friends selfies of my doped up, post-op surgery smile letting them know I made it out the other side. Any time I caught a glimpse of myself in the car door side mirror I had a smile permanently stamped on my face. This was beautiful, this was living.

After arriving home, the first thing I did was unbutton my shirt and look at my new body in the mirror. The reflection looking back at me was finally starting to align with the thoughts that clouded my head and screamed at me every day. I was elated, the drugs I was doped up on helped a little bit. I made my mom take a picture, I don't even need to pull it up to see the goofy smile that stretched from ear to ear that's been engraved into my memory. I posted it right away captioned "I waited 19 years to post a shirtless picture." I had never been so proud. I inspected my bandages and my drains for at least an hour, still so far in shock; was this real life? Did this really happen?

But what they don't tell you is that recovery is hell.

I've never opened up about my recovery process before, but it was far from rainbows and sunshine. My recovery would last a week; a week of not doing anything. When I say not doing anything, I mean nothing. I was trapped in a recliner for the first 2-3 days before I went stir crazy and then the only movements allowed were walking for shorter periods of time. I couldn't lift my arms, I couldn't go to the gym, which if anyone knows me knows is my second home. I couldn't even comfort myself with a warm shower. I was going insane. It was driving me mad. The first night was smooth sailing- until the drugs wore off. My mom had woken me up in the middle of the night to empty my drains and when I woke up I was in a world of hurt. She practically had to carry me to the bathroom because I was too dizzy to stumble my way there without assistance. She had asked if I was okay but I was in too much pain to even speak the words. Something was wrong, it wasn't just painful but it was uncomfortable. It felt like my chest was fighting itself from the inside out. I looked in the mirror and got scared at the extremely pale and sunken face staring back at me. I stumbled backwards onto the closed toilet and that was all I can remember of the first night. The rest of the week had me feeling like I was trapped in the same dull loop.

It wasn't that I was being overwhelmed with emotions all week like I had expected to be, it was more of being emotionless. One of the last days before I got my drains out, I made a Walmart trip with my mom where we ran into someone I knew and she asked me how I was feeling. I threw on a fake face and attitude and told her I was elated, happy, lucky, blessed, cliché stuff. The truth is I was, absolutely I was, the emotion and feelings in my body just weren't confirming that. I felt empty, like a shell.

When we finally made the trek back to Albany for my reveal, I was so excited to see my bare chest for the first time, I couldn't contain myself. I had a complication with the left side of my chest that caused a lot of swelling. It looked like I had only gotten one breast removed. Dr. Rockmore (highly recommend by the way) numbed my chest just to cut me back open and vacuum the fluid out. You know those spit suckers at the dentist that takes up too much space in your mouth? Picture that, except larger. Imagine feeling that move around inside your chest, feeling like a huge spider was just dancing around trapped inside my body. It was the most uncomfortable thing I've ever experienced, just thinking about it right now makes me cringe. I had to have my left drain in for another week because of it. I could shower this time now, thank God.

I was standing in the bathroom, drain wrapped up (my mom helped me and almost fainted at the sight of the entry spot for my drain tube) and ready for a shower, letting the steam roll out and the water run. The chest I expected to see was nowhere in sight, instead, I was left with a chest that looked like I had just gotten steam-rolled. I was completely black and blue until mid-rib cage, my stitches looked horrific, I got scared. I expected tears of joy and overwhelming happiness when I saw my bare, post-op chest, but instead I felt anxious, nervous. I was so glad I went through with the procedure, I knew I hadn't regretted it, I don't know where these feelings were coming from. I was happy but my mind was not allowing me to be, instead, it pointed out everything that was wrong, it was trying to convince me I had made a mistake.

The last week droned on and I finally got my second drain out along with my stitches. Nothing else was weighing me down, just a bare chest. Every time I went to the bathroom I would take my shirt off, button downs because I still couldn't quite lift my arms, and examine every square inch of my new chest. As I started to heal, the negative thoughts did too. A chest that looked and felt so foreign to me was now the most beautiful part of my body. The first time I applied cream to my scars, I did it with such pride and had tears in my eyes. Finally, my mind was letting me enjoy the body I had just gone through hell and back for. My scars are the greatest accessory I have and I never feel the need to try to hide them. Every time I see them I am reminded of how hard I fought to get them.

Post-op depression is real and I believe I experienced it for a good portion of my recovery. Thankfully it was only temporary, and now I flaunt my chest at every possible moment.

I love my chest, I love my scars, I love my journey. Its been anything but easy, but it's never been a question of "is it worth it?"

Hell yes, it's beyond worth it. You are beyond worth it.

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100 Instagram Captions You'll Want To Use Right Now

Quotes, lyrics, sayings, and other ideas for Instagram captions!
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When it comes to Instagram we are often thinking about what to use as a caption for our photos that we take that we really want to post on Instagram. Sometimes we post the photo without a caption and sometimes we just use an emoji because we're stumped on finding a good caption to use for the photo. So we go the short route and just put an emoji as a caption for our photo. Well whether it is a selfie, a friend pic, group pic, or just need a caption for the photo, here are 100 captions to use for a photo. Some are lyrics, some are quotes, and some are just a quick caption to use on your photo. Also here are some accounts that are worth following:

-@brandonwoelfel

-@tess_and_sarah

-@brandymelvilleusa

-@goldenretrievers_

-@cats_of_instagram

-@zodiac.signs

-@thegrilledpineapple

-@jazzjennings_

-@chipper_thegolddog

-@llauratheleo

-@heyshalice

-@sailorhaley

-@sandcloudteam

-@photosabss

-@sharkbaitblond

Here are Quotes To Use As A Caption/ Lyrics To Use As A Caption/ Quick Little Sayings To Use As A Caption: for your Instagram photo that you wish to post!

1. Life goes on, with or without you.

2. Don't Worry Be Happy! Bob Marley

3. Be Happy.

4. Be Confident.

5. Be Positive.

6. Don't be a liar, everyone hates a liar.

7. Chillin' with my peeps.

8. Go big or go home.

9. What's the deal?

10. The most important thing is to enjoy your life – to be happy – it's all that matters.

11. Life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced.

12. Life is a gift.

13. You couldn't handle me even if I came with instructions.

14. Forgive, yes. Forget, never.

15.There's a hole in my heart where you used to be.

16. I don't need any part-time people in my life.

17. Get the gist.

18. Boy, it's the 21st Century, get with the program.

19. Hey, I just met you, this is crazy!

20. I woke up like this.

21. Keep smiling because life is a beautiful thing and there's so much to smile about.

22. Beauty is power, a smile is its sword.

23. Last day of class!

24. I donut care!

25. Got my donut and coffee today.

26. Happy as a clam

27. Beach days are the best!

28. A friend will always make you smile, especially when you don't want to…

29. Always classy, never trashy, and a little bit sassy.

30. If only we could turn back time...

31. With you, I forget all my problems. With you, time stands still.

32. Life's a climb, but the view is great.

33. "Ohana, means family, family means no one gets left behind or forgotten." — "Lilo & Stitch"

34. We come to love by not finding the perfect person, but by learning to see the imperfect person perfectly.

35. If I ever write a story about my life, don't be surprised if your name appears a billion times.

36. She's got that red lip, classic thing going on.

37. I don't know what's tighter, our jeans or our friendship!

38. Best friends make good times better and hard times easier!

39. Not sure what I did to deserve you as my best friend :)

40. I don't need your approval to be me.

41. So call me? Maybe?

42. "I am who.I am, I am what I am, I do what I do and I ain't never gonna do it any different. I don't care who likes it and who don't." — Buck Owens

43. Take me as I am, or watch me as I go.

44. "Kiss me under the light of a thousand stars." — Ed Sheeran

45. Cause you're a sky full of stars — Coldplay

46 . I keep dancing on my own — Calum Scott

47. Can't keep my hands to myself — Selena Gomez

48. I just want to look good for you — Selena Gomez

49. Kill em with kindness — Selena Gomez

50. I am not perfect. I make mistakes. But when I say sorry… I mean it!

51. Me? Weird? Please! I am limited edition!

52. Turn that frown upside down.

53. Smile, it's the best thing a girl can wear!

54, Stay true.

55. Laughing is the best medicine you can ever get!

56. "You're the king, baby I'm your queen." — Taylor Swift

57. Best Friends Forever!

58.Throwing it back to the good ole days!

59. Ugg Life.

60. I know you like, first-name-basis.

61. *Sends selfie to NASA cuz I'm a star*

62. Basic white girl.

63. Frisky Friday!

64. My thoughts are stars that I cannot fathom into constellations. — "The Fault In Our Stars"

65. "Maybe our okays will be our infinities." — The Fault In Our Stars

66. So hold onto me because I'm a little unsteady — Unsteady

67. This has got to be the best day of my life.

68. She's the beauty and he's the beast.

69. "All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them." — Walt Disney

70. "If you can dream it, you can do it." — Walt Disney

71. "Hakuna Matata, it means no worries for the rest of your days." — "The Lion King"

72. "The past can hurt. But the way I see it, you can either run from it, or learn from it." — "The Lion King."

73. "Remember you're the one who can fill the world with sunshine." — "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs"

74 ."The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all." — "Mulan"

75. "You don't have time to be timid. You must be bold and daring." — "Beauty and the Beast"

76. "All it takes is faith and trust." — "Peter Pan"

77. "A little consideration, a little thought for others, makes all the difference." — "Winnie the Pooh"

78. "If you focus on what you left behind, you will never be able to see what lies ahead." — "Ratatouille"

79. "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." — George Bernard Shaw

80. "A true hero isn't measured by the size of his strength, but by the strength of his heart." — "Hercules"

81. "Life's not a spectator sport. If watchin' is all you're gonna do, then you're gonna watch your life go by without ya." — "The Hunchback of Notre Dame"

82. "The things that make me different are the things that make me ME." — "Winnie the Pooh"

83. "Giving up is for rookies." — "Hercules"

84. "Happiness is the richest thing we will ever own." — Donald Duck

85. "Change is good." — "The Lion King"

86. "In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." — Abraham Lincoln

87. "An unexamined life is not worth living." — Socrates

88. "Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky." — Rabindranath Tagore

89. "The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched, they must be felt with the heart." — Helen Keller

90. "The sky broke like an egg into full sunset and the water caught fire." — Pamela Hansford Johnson

91. "Put your heart, mind, and soul into even your smallest acts. This is the secret of success." — Swami Sivananda

92. "Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain... To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices. Today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity, but embrace it." — Kevyn Aucoin

93. "Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'," — Audrey Hepburn

94. "Keep your face always toward the sunshine and shadows will fall behind you." — Walt Whitman

95. "My power's turned on, starting right now I'll be strong." — Rachel Platten

96. "Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared." — Buddha

97. "Let your life lightly dance on the edges of Time like dew on the tip of a leaf." — Rabindranath Tagore

98. "I hated every minute of training, but I said, 'Don't quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.'" — Muhammad Ali

99. "Why don't you be you, and I'll be me." — James Bay

100. Life is like a camera, we focus on the positives and develop from the negatives.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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11 Things You NEVER Say To A College Girl Trying To Get Into Shape

Just never talk about a person's weight.

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When my family and friends joked that I was going to gain 15 pounds in my freshman year of college as a result of the "Freshman 15," I thought it was what it was supposed to be: a joke. However, as the year has come to an end, I realized that I actually did put on a couple of pounds, albeit it wasn't the predicted 15.

As I told those that I wanted to get into an ideal shape for my body, I was met with some insensitive and ignorant remarks. Everyone thought that I mean just losing the weight I had put on.

1. "You walk to all of your classes, why aren't you losing weight that way?"

My legs are more toned than they ever have been before. However, most of the weight I have been gaining has gone directly to my gut (annoying!) and walking does not remedy that. Unfortunately, I have to stick to ab workouts.

2. "But you look fine to me!"

I don't feel healthy to myself. I'm not trying to stay in shape for anyone else, just myself, thanks. I appreciate you trying to make me feel better about my body image but I know something has to be done.

3. "I didn't gain any weight in college."

Good for you. I did. I'm trying to do something about it.

4. "Just stop drinking."

I don't drink. Really, the only liquid I consume is water or iced tea. I don't like soda and alcohol makes me nauseous way too easily.

5. "Isn't the gym free on campus for students?"

Yes, but some people don't like working out in front of others. I am one of those people. My friend lives in an apartment complex that has their own gym and almost no one is ever there but not everyone has that luxury. Also, some are busy and do not have time for a quick jog or to stretch.

6. "You should try this diet/pills/exercise routine."

I am thankful that you are trying to help but my diet is just eating healthy and having a few cheat days in between. I know what exercises work best for me and I am just not taking pills. Bodies adjust differently.

7. "Don't starve/force yourself to throw up."

Trust me, I know. I'm trying to lose the weight healthily. If you do find yourself practicing unhealthy eating habits or realizing your body image is deteriorating, the NEDA Hotline is (800) 931-2237. Please reach out if you are going through hardships.

8. "Won't you have to buy a whole new wardrobe?"

If I drop (or even add) a size or two. We grow out and grow tired of clothes on the regular, what's the difference if you have to buy some because of a weight change? Plus, who doesn't love buying new clothes?

9. "Just eat healthier."

Didn't think of it! Options are limited at college where the dining halls don't offer all that much that is actually good for your body. Now that I'm at home, it's easier. But I'm already trying to eat healthy.

10. "You've evened out since the last time I saw you!"

This is code for you've put on some weight. I hear it mostly from older relatives because my friends will flat out tell me if I've gotten a little chunky.

11. "You're just stressed."

Personally, this one gets me livid. I do admit that when I am stressed or anxious, I do turn to food for comfort but when I am delighted and genuinely happy, will my body magically revert into a fit state?

Sadly, no.

Honestly, I am just trying to get my body back into shape. For me, that means cutting back on greasy foods and kicking a bad habit of sitting on my butt all day. For others, it could mean more or less. As long as your body is in good physical condition and you are content, the number on the scale and others' thoughts shouldn't matter. Take care of yourself.

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