Sunday, 9 May 2010

Why the gory details matter

I thought I might risk turning people off by posting a picture of my back wound on my blog, but then my friend Becky told me to watch Embarrassing Bodies. Blimey! I love Channel 4's disclaimer: "This video contains explicit medical imagery". Somehow that is more arresting than their parallel warning, "nudity in a medical context". It makes me feel better about being explicit about my surgery - it's important to me to share that experience openly and honestly. This is why:
  • It helps me come to terms with the facts. 
  • I like saying the things people want to ask me about, but are too polite to; conversely, I like saying the things people don't want to hear as well.
  • It's payback for all those times when I had to listen to other people's boring work stories/birth stories/poo stories/funny things that happened and you should have been there stories/etc.
I'm going to use the Embarrassing Bodies series to prepare myself for my next task: watching a sentinel node biopsy, mastectomy and LD reconstruction, the surgeries I had, live in theatre. My friends think I'm bonkers, but I'm absolutely fascinated, and I really want to stand and watch my surgeon, Mr A, at work. (Although sitting may be better. In truth, I shall probably be feeling quite sick.) He's going to video an operation for me to watch at home so I can decide to opt out of watching the real thing if I want to. Before that happens, I'm also going to prepare myself by editing an earlier post, in which I wrote "etc." instead of "nipple" because it felt rude.

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