The New Old Me


On June 28th I had spent the night at a friend’s home and then got up early to take a shower before being driven over to the hospital. Once there I checked in and a short time later I was directed into a small room to undress and put on the hospital garments.

My parents weren’t going to be there after getting into an argument with my mother. She thinks I’m a lazy, self-centered, lying, man and won’t talk to me anymore. I was trying to reach out to her and form some kind of communication with her because it has been strained but she just made it worse. I’m not seeing any viable way to repair it now and I let her know not to come down, it wasn’t worth it.

All my other family and friends were kept in the loop about what was going on mostly with some people knowing more than others just because some of my family members have medical backgrounds and they knew what they needed to know when chatting with me.

I looked out the window from my room in that early hour and saw my chance to rebel. I could press my gross nakedness up against the glass and let the public all gasp in horror, but it was so early no one would have seen it and I let the thought pass. Soon I was seated in my chair waiting for the staff to get me ready and wondering when I was going to start freaking out.

The nurses came in first to set the IV but as always I had to warn them that even with extra liquids, I’m difficult to get a surface vein that works. Usually people try a few different places until they find one that works but these people were on a schedule and if it caused me pain but it worked then that is the one they were going to use. So, with a little injection to numb the back of my hand, they were able to effortlessly get a good stab on a working vein. Soon I was connected to a bag of something and kept comfortable until it was time to head to surgery.

I’ve never had an experience such as this other than having my wisdom teeth removed and that setting was completely different. I don’t think I even took off my shoes when they pulled the teeth and the room where they did it reminded me of an old 70’s doctor’s office. Not this though, this was in the new surgical center and not a single strip of wood paneling was in sight. They had me get up and walk down the hall to the operating room and then my mind went somewhere else.

The room was really big with a bunch of equipment set around a central table with separate arms that swung out from the sides. The room was rather chilly but not as bright as one would expect. There were two arms mounted to the ceiling for devices that I cannot remember looking directly at because I was more fascinated with the ceiling in the middle. There was a different set of tiles where the equipment was mounted to the ceiling and I was trying to figure that out and now that I think back on it, I wonder if there wasn’t something in my IV that made me disconnect from reality a little.

Soon I was laid down and made as comfortable as possible on the narrow bed. They covered my legs with warmers and put a blanket on me, then rested my arms on the little side arms. And then, well, that is where things get a little off for a moment.

I have this memory that I cannot place because I have no sense of time for it. The event could be before they started or after they finished but I’m not really sure. There was a brief moment where they had a respirator mask on my face and it was not seated just right and I saw it being pulled away a bit from my face and then set back down in the right position and then I was out again.

The next time I woke up I was in some darkly lit room and I could not discern what my surroundings were except for there was possibly a nurse either beside me or near the foot of the bed. I think was really got me to wake up was the kid screaming constantly across the room. I was trying to say something myself but the words would not come out and that was a little worrisome but then I was out again.

Then I was back where I started and no idea how I got there. Sitting in the chair in the little room with my friend just coming in and me responding with some semblance of a joke. I would drift in and out of consciousness for awhile and get a couple shots of pain reliever until I could finally sit up. Almost immediately after that the staff came in and wanted me to go for a walk and that was not happening. Although I was able to eat and drink, I hadn’t had any real food for over a day and I was really weak to the point were movement was making me feel sick to my stomach. Eventually though I was able to stand and then a little while longer I walk walking down the hall.

What came out of this all was a gallbladder with many stones in it including one about the size of a golf ball. After the recovery pain, healing of the scars, being able to move around, and getting back to my regular life, I can say that it was definitely worth it. I can eat dairy and fats without having to be curled up in pain waiting for it to go away. I no longer have to fear that something I am going to eat is going to trigger the pain and leave me incapacitated for hours at a time. This has given me back my old life.

Still, there are some differences in that I still don’t trust food completely yet. I have had some cheese from different foods but I’m wary of having ice cream yet. I have been doing good with my low fat, low carb diet and I don’t think I’m going to give it up just yet. Right now my weight has leveled off because I haven’t been walking as much so maybe when I get more active and lose another 50 pounds I can have a small cup of ice cream. Maybe.

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