Do you remember this story?
Where the group of women were kicked off a wine train for laughing too loudly? Well. I think this same group of women were across the hall in the Pre-Op room at Loyola yesterday morning.
It is always a strange thing to me-like the person on the massage table thinks their massage is going too fast, and the one actually doing the massage is familiar with Every Sweep of Every Second on the clock and you're both in the same room thinking opposite thoughts. Perception/reality.
So, here's me Thursday morning: We had to get up at 6:00. Nothing by mouth and all I wanted was maybe a piece of gum or something. But I knew, if I did, I'd be screwing the entire procedure up but I have to say, nerves~wise, I was having a really hard time. I think it has to do with muscle memory. My body was not down with another surgery. Yo.
Thing two-we were led to the Pre-Op room at around 8:00 AM, but the party didn't start until way after 10:00. P read his stack of newspapers and ate two yogurts. I tried to keep my emotional shit-if you will-together.
Thing three-It's official. I'm a hard stick. So, I knew there was going to be pain ahead. The first nurse couldn't start the line because the vein blew, so we all decided it'd be best to have the anesthesia person try to get it in.
And the group in the room across from us. Oh they were having such a good time laughing and laughing and I wanted to throw a shoe at them-if I had a shoe, because at this point I was wearing those trendy yellow non-skid hospital socks.
I tried and tried to find the positive in that situation. Like, they were giving me a giant distraction, weren't they? They were entertaining their Mom or whoever she was. But there's me-flat out on the hospital bed listening to this women's family tear her up because she not only got her nails done with some sort of metal decorations that had to come off, she had also paid for some of those ever-so-natural eyelashes and the nurse made her take those off too. And her kids were all like, Your doctor must be good-looking for you to get all dolled up today. Woo hoo hoo more howling.
The mystery patient? She was in for gastric bypass. She DID chew gum before she got to the hospital. And...the strangest thing I heard was that she was allergic to chocolate so she'd take Benedryl before she ate some. Does that sound like a good candidate for bypass? Good thing I'm not in charge.
It went on forever. Long enough for me to have to get myself unplugged from the machinery a couple of times to go to the bathroom down the hall and finally they rolled her and her family away. Tanks Be To Jezuz.
The doc popped in. The one question I had was: can we get going already? He gave me a strange look like, don't you understand you're in the number 2 slot? So for that two hours, I should have carried a book or some tranquilizer guns or something. Really, I wished for some sort of very strong vodka cocktail. That would have been nice.
A woman named Ann was the nurse anesthetist. No e. She said I had bad veins and I was like, they seem to have worked so far keeping me alive, but thanks. She got a line in with a tiny needle and I think that's so they could start sending some soap suds to my anxiety-ridden brain and that it would be replaced with a bigger needle once I was knocked out. (And it was. On my wrist. And it hurt like a MF'er.) When she got the tiny needle in, she petted my head(now in a stunning silver elastic plastic hat suitable for contacting other planets) like you would do to a dog. I said, are you petting me? Oh she's Italian, she said-they like to touch people. And right after that is when I fell asleep.
I woke up in the middle of a brawl. Apparently, they were trying to get me to take my hands away from my eyes or something and I guess I gave them some sort of struggle. Later, the resident who was my opponent explained that sometimes people have this reaction coming out of anesthesia. Huh. I always seemed so nice.
heh heh heh.
Next, I got a hand-delivered post-it note. One nurse said 'Love note' and handed it to the next nurse who said 'Love note' and then handed it to me. It was from P. We had had this discussion in the PreOp room-that he didn't have to hang around because I knew I was in good hands and unfortunately, I'm starting to understand how hospitals work. Kinda. He had tons of things to do. And so the note confirmed it. He stayed long enough to chat with the doctor and then he went on his way.
I had some really nice nurses-I think maybe 4 of them all together. I was in this section just for thyroid patients. There were 5. I'm starting to think this whole thyroid thing is environmental, right? But I was feeling sick. In fact, the nurse told me of the 5 thyroid people-I was the only one having trouble. Because, of course, I'm as delicate as a flower. : )
They put me in my room where I'd be spending the night. It had a teevee. Lotsa pillows cuz they didn't want you to be laying out flat. And I just kept feeling like I was going to heave.
I sat on the bed with my head held up by my hands that were resting on the tray table thing and the most amazing thing happened. My nurse, Andrew said that some sort of surgeon was going to check in, and that he looked very young but that he was excellent. (Andrew also showed my how to have an ice pack at the back of my neck to deal with the nausea. Nice.)
This guy entered. I was like: HEYYYYYYYY! How are you? It was this doctor who spent a whole lotta time with me in the middle of the night during the September surgery. Ya know, these people work so hard helping ya and when you escape the hospital-you never see them again. So that was pretty miraculous.
AND he got me some anti-nausea medicine AND called to see how I was doing. Impressive, no?
At exactly 8:55 PM, I started feeling like a person again with much personal rejoicing and quiet jubilation. And they got me an after hours sandwich box. I had ordered a cheese omelet and mashed potatoes for dinner but they were sorta not very good(the spuds tasted like spaghetti and meatballs), so my fleet of nurses got me a nice box that had a wheat bread, turkey sandwich, some Lorna Doones, A yogurt and a bottle of water.
Next time: Covering up.