Saturday, June 25, 2011
My dear friend Cynthia dropped me off at 8:00 am with nothing but my contact case and a list of emergency numbers in case something happened. My friend Will was instructed to come at 11am, after all that accounted for any delays starting the procedure and still gave me 30 minutes to wake up from the anesthesia. Despite the fact that at least 10 people asked if I had somebody with me and every time I had to answer "no" like a loser, my pre-op experience was fairly pleasant. I was called back almost immediately, put in some back room instructed to take off all my clothes (including bra and panties, which I found a little odd, but whatever), and put on the ever-so-flattering hospital gown, which I was not allowed to tie because they would be hooking up leads. I was then instructed to just relax and they would move me to a room up front soon. As I was watching some early morning TV (something I haven't done in years) Dr. Mitchell, the anesthesiologist came and checked my chart (only after he asked me if I was alone), and explained his portion the procedure. In the next hour, an IV was started, at least 7 more people asked if I was alone, I met with the surgeon and resident, and started to get wheeled away for the procedure before they gave me the relaxing medicine the anesthesiologist ordered before going into the surgery. The scrub nurses said they thought I already had it because "I was smiling and already slurring my words." The anesthesiologist said it would feel like a "red wine buzz" (whatever that feels like) but it definitely just put me to sleep. The last thing I remember was the nurse asking me to move to a different bed, and me trying to do it without flashing anybody (who knows if I was successful or not). The next thing I know I am waking up and immediately start to sob hysterically, and I couldn't stop. I was pulling out the oxygen, attempting to pull out the IV, taking off the blood pressure cuff, not letting the nurses touch me, not responding to questions and not doing what I was told (I think the exact words were combative and non-compliant), but I just COULD NOT stop myself. The nurses were asking if anything was in pain, the anesthesiologist was asking if I could calm down, the doctor was asking if I would open my eyes, and I just kept crying. All I did was ask the nurse why she was being so mean to me. (I should have known this would happen, my friend swears that I am a drama queen and that I cry whenever anything is a little bit stressful, I guess he is right). I finally settled myself down 45 minutes later, asked what time it was and panicked because it was 11:15 and I was making Will wait, but I still felt like crying. I pulled myself together, the nurse called Will, they discharged me and I was wheeled down the the car, despite my pleas to let me walk.
Recovery hasn't been too tough. I was out an about later Thursday night, but was not able to tolerate more than an hour of sitting. Today (three days later) was the first day that they were unbearably painful, but I guess that is part of the healing process. I am slowly adding solid food back into my diet and will be going back to work on Monday.