The future of my chest is up in the air right now. For months now, I’ve been planning for surgery in the fall. October, to be precise. Because no one in Seattle will perform the surgery I want, I’ve been planning to go out of state, and I have two options – New York or Los Angeles.
It had gotten to the point where LA seemed my best bet; it’s only a few-hour flight vs. cross-country, and hell, it’s on the same coast. Plus it has the added bonus of being sunny (which I’ll need, seeing as Seattle doesn’t seem to be having summer this year). I spoke with the surgeon down in LA and felt good about it; in fact, I came away from both the NY and La consults feeling good, like this is totally something I can do and come out okay.
Until I realized how much hotels actually cost. I don’t know what I was thinking, exactly, but I don’t stay in hotels often. I don’t tend to travel within the US unless I’m visiting someone I know (thus staying with them) and when I’ve traveled to Europe, I’ve stayed in hostels and really cheap hotels. Neither New York nor Los Angeles are known for their affordability, so of course hotels are crazy-expensive.
And I just don’t think I can justify $2000 just for lodging so I can go out-of-state. I can afford it, yes, but I just don’t think I should. I don’t think it’s justifiable.
My best friend let me know that some relatives of hers recently bought a vacation home “near LA” that I could use – total relief, right? Except it’s not actually near LA in the slightest – it’s 2.5 hours away. While I’m totally fine with that, I suspect my mother is not going to be comfortable renting a car and driving back and forth in unfamiliar territory like that. Since I’ll be, you know, having surgery, I obviously won’t be doing any driving. I’m still waiting to discuss it with her and see what her thoughts are, but more than likely she won’t go for it.
And that leaves me back at square one. As much as I shudder at the idea of spending $2000 on a hotel, I also know there’s no way in hell I can deal with the surgeries available to me here in Seattle. I cannot go through all of that for a damn elective procedure. I know it’s right for some people. I know some people are happy with the process and the results and that’s wonderful. However, it’s not right for me at this point in my life and I’m pretty sure there is nothing that can change my mind about that.
So right now, I’m back to probably doing nothing for the next few years. I don’t know what I’m waiting for, exactly. Someone in Seattle to start doing the surgery I want? To magically meet someone in LA or NY who has a house in which I can say for free? To become comfortable with the months-long process of expanders and all that goes along with that? I guess any of those things would suffice.
I have to keep reminding myself I’m only 27. The chance I’ll get cancer in the next few years – while very possible – is still low. It’s not urgent that I do this right away. And if I don’t feel 100% comfortable about it – whether due to the cost or the type of surgery – I can’t let myself go ahead with it yet.