6.29.2012

Fashionably Naked PICC

Because I'm walking around with a very obvious elephant in the room every single day when time I go to Target, it's about time to devote another entire post to my beloved PICC. I've gone into detail about some other fun aspects of colon cancer and chemo, so why not strip down and show you what else I've been hiding.

I had my on little internal debate before starting chemo over getting a PICC line vs. a Mediport. I obviously opted for the PICC because it was the right choice for my vanity me. I knew vanity would be set aside during this season, but in the long run, I liked the idea of not having another scar on my body and being able to bare my abnormally bony clavicle for the summer without having that bulging port staring everyone down like my absorbed twin.

I'm sure I'll end up with a very tiny scar where the line goes in, but it's on the inside of my arm and will be no bigger than a well used pencil eraser. Unless you're staring at the biceps I plan to replenish when I'm done with this chemo bit, you'll never notice.

We are one now, me and my PICC. It's like I was born with an extra toe or a miniature arm. We are so tight that I'm willing to show off her nakedness. In the raw. Out in the open. My secret little friend. Since it made a semi-nude appearance more than a few blog posts ago, I might as well let it all hang out and let you see how dressed up it likes to get. Then maybe you won't have to stare next time you bump into me in the dollar section at Target.

I refer to it as my danglies. Merrick calls it my noodles. My infusion nurse calls it pigtails. All are perfectly suited and I embrace this thing like my third child.

That doesn't mean I pretend it's not there. I still have to play dress up and treat it like its own person sometimes or it starts slapping me around, but my life has not been drastically altered because of it.

I gave up the rubber waterproof cover pretty early on. It was taking more time to get it on than it was to actually take a shower. It finally dawned on me that if I turned the shower head towards the wall for that half-wet effect and mastered the art of bathing with my left arm in the air, I could survive.

It's now summer and my sleeves are up. There's no hiding anything anymore, so here's how I make it work.

Baby Legs
This worked with long sleeves, but I really only need about half of a Baby Leg to cover my little partner so it's gone to the wayside with the warmer weather.

No need to bring me Krispie Kreme, I've gain 1.5 whole centimeters in my upper arm since this was taken.
Wrist Wallet
Made to make your clubbing experience easier, the Wrist Wallet is meant to go on your wrist (or abnormally thin arms) and has a little pocket perfect for an ID, cash or your Target Debit Card. This enables you to leave your European Man Purse at home and enjoy dancing uninhibited all night long.

Yes, I'm still in my jammies at 11:30 in the morning.
Medical Mesh
Not sure what to call it, but it's standard issue any time they mess with my arm.  It's very wash-and-wear friendly and so breathable for all that summer humidity! I also have a whole roll of it compliments of my home care nurse. Ideal for sleeping, when I don't need to be fashionable, when I don't care or if it's hot out. At this point in the process, I don't care 80% of the time and wear it with no regard for what anyone at the mall might think. Nothing says: "Something is wrong with me!" like medical mesh! If you've had a baby in a hospital recently, you'll recognize that mesh from those special undergarments they give you in recovery. One size fits all!

The mesh gets two one thumb up!
Knee Socks
My friend Karen started getting overly crafty with her sewing machine one day and making DIY Baby Legs for her pending baby girl out of women's knee socks. Knowing I was using faux Baby Legs, she ofter to make me some. That means I had an excuse to go to made haste for Target and their bright and colorful knee sock selection. She was able to customize them to a short fit and now I'm rocking some socks in public. I've only been busted once, when a friend pointed out that she had bought the very same socks.
Some people like to take self-portraits looking all sorts of sexy. Clearly I just like to take them of my arm.
And then there she is, in all her naked glory. My PICC nurse comes every Tuesday to change all my bits and pieces like a pair of dirty underwear. Given that it is a constant unnatural opening directly into my body, it needs some artificial protection. Infection is the big, scary monster in the room and we must guard against it. You can also see why it's best to keep this little missy under wraps as to not scare away small children.




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