Thanks for your kind response and good wishes, Bill. I know when I was trying to find the courage to go forward with this surgery, it really helped to hear the experiences of others. I'm just hoping I can help someone else make their way down the path to this decision and recovery.
The doctors have a different mindset than the patients do, that's for sure. I asked a million questions of the nurses (they didn't know that much). I wanted to know all I could before leaving. I clarified and clarified what was being told to me. One nurse commented that I'm a "detail person". I guess that's true.
If it weren't for all of you, I'd be alone and unsure, and afraid of everything that is happening to me. Now I know that what I'm experiencing is typical, and has been experienced to some degree by everyone who has followed this path.
I do know that the wrap will swell more and more over the next two weeks, so I expect symptoms to increase. Patience, patience, patience. I'm glad I'm on this side of the surgery, though. I definitely needed to do this--and now I need to live the recovery.
Thanks to all of you, and your support and encouragement, I have the tools I need to do that.
Many, many thanks from the bottom of my heart!