The Big Reveal
Nothing much happened the next few days, except I got up more and I was getting closer to being able to go to the bathroom by myself. We also talked to the Parkers once and my dad multiple times. My dad was concerned about everything, but the Parkers were mostly just excited for me.
“Do we get to see the results when you get your bandages off?” Terin asked the night before my next appointment.
“Sure,” I said.
“Tell him that his nipples will be okay,” Jed said. “He’s concerned.”
“Your nipples will be fine, Cam.” Terin said, laughing.
“I’m trying not to get my hopes up,” I said. “They could be too big. Or they could be different shapes.”
“It’ll be fine,” Jed said.
“Boy, I wish I was there.” Terin said.
“No you don’t,” Jed said with a laugh.
“I’m right here, guys,” I said, weakly elbowing Jed.
“Kidding, Cam,” Terin said. “I’m just happy for you.”
“I’m kidding too,” Jed said. “It’s been wonderful helping you bathe.”
And got to the bathroom,” I added. “Can’t forget that one.”
“I never looked,” Jed said to Terin.
“Hey, I never asked,” Terin said. “You sure you didn’t want to look?”
Terin and I laughed. I didn’t even feel sad that Jed didn’t want to see me, because I was sure I smelled bad and looked gross. My stomach was bloated, I was still barely pooping, and we had only washed my hair once.
“Have you gotten accepted anywhere yet, Terin?” I asked.
“No, not yet,” he said. “But I haven’t gotten rejected either. What about you?”
“Haven’t looked,” I admitted. “I kind of forgot about it.”
“I could be wrong, but I think it’s still a little early.” Jed said.
We talked a while longer, until we all wanted to go to bed. I was sleeping on the floor in Isaiah’s room now, which made my back hurt a little less than sleeping in a chair, because laying flat on my back was one time that it was easy to not be a hunchback.
I let Jed come in the room for the big reveal appointment. As the nurse took off my bandages and pulled out my drains, some of which I felt, some of which I didn’t, Jed made faces at me and I made faces at him and in reaction to what the nurse was doing. My chest was quite red where the bandages had been stuck to me, which the nurse said happened sometimes, and my bruises were brown and yellow, which meant they would probably be gone in the next week, or maybe just a little longer. The nurse explained that I had to tape over my scars and put big bandaids over my nipples so they didn’t stretch as much or rub against my compression vest, which I still had to wear for 5 more weeks. She also said that some of my stitches would fall out and that I could shower, as long as the water didn’t hit my chest directly, which was a relief.
When she got to the point of peeling off the little sponge-type-things over my nipples, Jed started taking a video for my dad and the Parkers. I hoped and hoped that my nipples would be in good places and in good shape as she took the sponges off. When the first one came off, I looked down at it. The shape looked pretty good, but the nipple itself looked like… well, like it had practically been cut off and then sewed back on. The nurse told me that they were going to scab before they started looking better. After the second one was off, I remembered that Jed was video taping and I smiled at the camera.
“Would you like to look in a mirror?” the nurse asked.
“Yeah,” I said. She led me over to one that hung on a closet door. When I saw my chest for the first time from the angle that everyone else was seeing it… Wow. Just wow. I wished that my surgeon was there so that I could thank him. My incisions were smaller than many I had seen in my research and my nipples were placed really well. I thought that they might even be perfectly symmetrical, which was really impressive.
“What do you think?” the nurse asked.
“It looks really good,” I said. I turned to the side. I wasn’t hunching as bad anymore, but whenever I stood up straight I felt things stretching, and I didn’t want to make my scars bigger.
“It does look really good,” Jed agreed. The nurse nodded and smiled.
Jed stopped videotaping, and the nurse had me sit back on the bed so that she could redress my chest. I had to put my compression vest back on, which was irritating my armpits, but I knew it would help me heal.
On the way back to the house, I cried in the car.
“Happy tears?” Jed asked.
I nodded, not able to get words out. He used a hand to pat my shoulder, keeping his eyes on the road.
Back at the house, I fell asleep as Jed sent the video out. When I woke up, I had a lot of texts. Everyone said it looked really good, and I thanked them. The Parkers said that Jed and I should call after dinner, and I promised that we would. My dad had responded to the video, but he clearly hadn’t had time to do much other than watch it. I would call him around the time he got off.