This past weekend, boyfriend and I went on a long-overdue vacation to Tampa, Fla., and Orlando, Fla. As soon as my surgeon told me that I would need to have another surgery to remove the atypical hyperplasia, one of the first things to pop into my mind: "Is this an emergency? My boyfriend and I haven't been on vacation since I've been sick." She assured me it wasn't and said a vacation was a great idea.
It was a fantastic idea.
My sweetie and I have endured one and a half years of stress regarding my illness and his job, as well as uncertainty about our future. When is this going to end? Will it ever end? Is this the type of future we have to look forward to? Our lives consisted of my medical issues, causing my sweetie's life to be stressful at work and then he came home to even more stress.
Last summer, I was still recovering from my treatment, which didn't even officially end until the beginning of July. My hair grew back slowly but surely. My neck scar, plus my super short hairdo, made me feel self conscious about going anywhere. Since all my paid time off got sucked up by illness and he was starting a new job anyway, we didn't go anywhere for fun.
Once I learned that I had to go in for yet another surgery, I knew right then and there that a vacation was needed for my sake and his. As soon as she was talking about pre-cancerous cells, indicators, abnormalities, whatever, I quickly came to the conclusion that I would have a double mastectomy. I didn't want to have such a life-changing, body-altering surgery without having done something wild and fun beforehand. My boyfriend has been nothing but a big pile of stress, so he needed a vacation probably more than me.
On our first day in Tampa, we went to Busch Gardens. The weather was perfect. Our moods were chill and excited. I don't think I could ever count Busch Gardens as just an amusement park since it also has a zoo. We went on rides and also fed giraffes. Giraffes!
We went on the adult "booze cruise" Giraffe safari, so I drank Bud Lime and fed some giraffes. The whole mini trip was so awesome, and a memory I will cherish for a long time.
On my actual birthday, we went go kart racing in Clearwater Beach in the morning. My boyfriend was so happy and had a huge grin on his face whenever he lapped me. I can always kick his ass on racing video games, but we both learned that actual racing.... I am the one whose ass is kicked.
After racing, we went to the public beach in Clearwater and went jet skiing. We had gone jet skiing before two years ago when the stepsister got married. Two years ago, we didn't ever come close to tipping or falling off. I thought that was normal for jet skiing so I eagerly wanted to do it again. Well, it all depends on where you jet ski. When we were jet skiing the second time, the two of us fell into the ocean twice. I banged my ankle on the way into the ocean the first time. (Three days later, I still feel some pain - ouch!)
We chilled on the beach for about 10 minutes or so and then walked on Pier 60. I felt like Polyanna that day. Everything was just so wonderful and amazing. I kept saying to my boyfriend, "This has to be the best birthday ever." It was. Last year, I was bald and had an open wound on my neck. For this birthday, I was away from Pittsburgh's dreary weather (it freaking snowed on my birthday!) and soaking up warmth and rays.
For my birthday dinner, we went to Ybor City and had Argentina cuisine at El Puerto Restaurant in Ybor City. I had a great meal: Arroz Chaufa (chicken fried ice with spring onions and a scrambled egg). When my plate arrived, that meal could have fed me for three days. I struggled to just finish a third of the plate because the portions were astronomical.
The following day, boyfriend and I traveled to Orlando and went to Universal Studios and Universal Studios Island Adventures. I felt like the world's biggest dork when we went to HARRY POTTER'S WIZARDING WORLD. If a stranger had walked by me and really listened, then they would have heard my maniacal giggles. The actual ride was amazing: a 3-D adventure where it really felt like you were flying. I don't know how they did what they did, but it was ridiculously mind-blowing.
I thought Island Adventures was much more exciting than Universal Studios, though I am glad we went to both of them. My boyfriend played those rigged basketball games, and he won me a mini-plush dog. I named her Lil Boomer and also giggled at the fact that a boy had never won me a prize before. My boyfriend is a special special guy.
Now that I am back home and reunited with my real Boomer, I am happy but eager to get things moving. I want to go sky diving and then bam, get my murderous boobs off me. This is what I want to happen in my life: move forward. I've been at a standstill for so long, and now it's time to start going out into the world and conquer it.