Recovery from lip cancer surgery has been pretty miserable

My recovery from lip cancer surgery has been pretty miserable; obviously there are many other things that would be more miserable (this really isn’t a club you want to be a member of: ‘let’s compare and contrast our miseries’ 😢),

but there has been definitely a couple of things about recovering from lip cancer surgery that have caught me off guard…

1) I can’t smile — it really *really* hurts to smile because it pulls at my stitches, so I pretty much have to focus on depressing shit all day and talk to no one to avoid ripping at my stitches;

(Fairly easy right now considering the economy is crashing all around us, and I believe we’re still no where near the bottom of the crash — look at 3 year charts — we’re pretty much headed back to similar place to where we were before Covid hit…never made much sense for the stock market to be up during a major pandemic in the first place–)

2) I can’t laugh — related to above, but when the impulse to laugh comes over me *wow* ouch it hurts bad!

Eating and drinking? First 24 hours I was pretty much laying around in misery and didn’t want to eat or drink much anyway,

(Which should be something doctors should tell patients before lip surgery: drink a lot of water the 24-48 hours before the surgery because you’re not going to feel like drinking much for the first day or two so it’s good to be well hydrated going into it.)

When necessity started to dictate it was time to start eating and drinking,

all the rules went out the window,

and I pretty much had to pull out a straw–

I was told *not* to use a straw, I’m guessing so that I wouldn’t pucker my lips,

But after smearing mash potatoes all of my newly cut stitches and down my shirt,

I realized quickly there was pretty much no fucking way I was gonna get anything into my body without using a straw–


I stuck the straw waaaay in the back of my throat,

then use my tongue muscles to manipulate the straw so I can eat or drink…

It may pull on my lips a little bit,

but using the straw is not nearly as much danger to my lips as when I was trying to put food on my mouth on the side corner–

(I haven’t seen such a piggy messy trying to eat since Noah was a baby trying food for the first time 🤪.)

So I’m pretty much blending soups and drinking water and smoothies…biggest thing I have to be careful of, is making sure the soup isn’t too hot, since the straw is at the back of my throat and would burn me pretty bad if it was too hot…

But the no smiling and no laughing…that’s pretty hard…I didn’t realize how much I like to animate my face when I talk until now, and I have to keep it still…

(I’m not supposed to be talking at all, but hey, we all knew that wasn’t gonna go as planned either 🤪.)

Working it one day at a time…

Grateful to be alive 🥰.

About hopeforanswers

Some kind of rare immune deficiency, yet to be determined. A lifetime of infections without an elevated white cell blood or fever. Very grateful to be alive, very thankful for the friends who’ve supported me and for access to literally millions of dollars worth of medical care. I’m not the bubble child, I’m somewhere in between.
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2 Responses to Recovery from lip cancer surgery has been pretty miserable

  1. Len says:

    Hi, I am sure you are all good by now and smiling profusely!. I am having surgery in two days so it was good to find your input and I will take note of the H2O advice though the straw may not work for me as it is my whole lip with the middle squarely in the firing line not just the sides. Again thanks for your effort.

    • Len,

      I hope you’re recovery goes as smoothly as possible — the first few days are bad but it gets better! Lay in bed and rest and watch TV, try to zone out as much as possible 🙂 I’m here if you need to chat, I wish you all the best and I’ll be thinking about you 🙂

      Tara 🙂

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