Have you heard of "cording"? I had not. It is also called "Axilliary Web Syndrome" which is slightly more descriptive of how it feels... Imagine if Todd McFarlane drew a bra and sleeve made by Spider-Man.
After a mastectomy and lymph node removal, apparently sometimes people develop this web of thin, restrictive cords which inhibit movement of the arm. I am one of those lucky few. This wasn't entirely unexpected, they just didn't tell me that, (of course). They already set me up with a physiotherapist and we've been working on stretching them out. When you stretch them out enough they snap and the other ones feel much, much tighter, which sucks.
At this point (just over 4 weeks since surgery) I've done enough work to release most of these, so now the only ones left are around my armpit and breast. They're so tight that I can see the dent from the cords pressing across my breast and I can't raise my arm over my head properly.
This web of cords gets oddly tighter when I don't move much, so at night I have to wake up enough to remember to stretch out or sleep with the arm stretched enough so it doesn't cramp, but not so much that the pain keeps me awake. It's quite the little juggling act.
On the plus side I haven't had any tylenol since this morning, and those worse off about 6 hours ago. This is the first day since surgery I've been able to do that, it's pretty great. And I didn't use any edibles yet either, just smoked a little. It's making me feel a lot better about how healed and strong I am in terms of chemo prep.
Heidi came over today with all sorts of recommendations and advice. That was precluded and interspersed with little questions about why on earth we'd been out of touch for the last 20 years... I found a lot of creative ways to say "I used to be mean and crazy" but she was really nice about it. Sometimes when I meet people from my past I can't believe how much they remember me, how many conversations they recall... I don't know if it's my past experimentations with drugs in my teens and twenties, or the experiences with surgical anesthesia over the last 3 years, but my brain is mercifully free of my own past conversations. I envy them a little their memories, but I don't know if I could handle remembering what a cock I used to be / still am!
Time to stretch again now. Gotta get these webs broken and soon.