The Surgery - I Could Never Have Expected This

Mark is freakishly OCD about being on time or early everywhere we go, so when we left to go to the hospital for my surgery, the traffic was bad, it was lightly snowing (yes, I know, on April 19!!), and it appeared we were going to be a bit late.  I kept trying to calm him down, telling him they give people huge windows of two to three hours before their surgery even begins to get there.  Everyone has their buttons, though.  His is traffic, another one of his is finding a parking spot in a parking lot.  NOT a good pet peeve living in Chicago.  Now *that* I totally dread.  I can go from being so excited to being somewhere to telling him to just take me home because it's all been ruined, and it may have all happened in five minutes.  It's just that bad.  No one wants to be around someone that unpleasant, and it ruins any experience for me. 

Off-topic.  So while he was freaking out about traffic when of course there is absolutely nothing you can do about it so you might as well make the best of it - listen to your favorite music or whatever, the hospital calls me.  My first instinct was that my surgery had been cancelled, but actually, no.  They asked if I could come in earlier because they had a room ready for me.  I don't think they realized I lived over an hour away (40 miles, but...it IS Chicago traffic), so I told them I would actually be a little late.  But I thought that was odd, why would they want me to hurry to nab a pre-op room when my surgery wouldn't be for 2 to 3 hours after 2:30 when we were to arrive?

I got there, navigated through everything and when I went to the surgery window, they told me my doctor had actually been asking if I had arrived yet.  WHAT?  I've had enough surgeries to know that that is just not normal.  Actually, they usually aren't even there yet when I get there, why was he so anxious for me to arrive?

I went through all the procedures and had on a gown and socks, on the bed with the warm blanket on me, and my doctor came in.  I was thinking wow, this is all so fast, they are on top of things!  I hadn't even had a chance to freak out yet.  But that wasn't the case. I was supposed to be getting a Davinci hysterectomy - robotic, but there must have been some complications in the procedures before me that had the robot behind, because the wait for my surgery was at that time five more hours, which means the surgery wouldn't have even started until at least 7:30 or later, and it was at least a 3 hour surgery.  Although he didn't say it, I knew it could be longer if anyone else had complications.  So...he wanted to do a laprascopic hysterectomy and remove the uterus through the vagina.  Of course I had done a lot of research on davinci, but luckily I had found this website called Hyster Sisters and had read everything I could about every procedure - everybody's stories are just all mixed together, but you can see which procedure they had or are about to have, so I felt informed enough to make a decision without being coerced if that was what I wanted.  He explained it all to me very detailed, I asked a lot of questions which he carefully and fully answered  I agreed to do the procedure.

So then there was a flurry of action, and I'm not really sure what the rush was - maybe to use the surgery room?  I did not, in any way, get rushed through anything or get substandard care, I'm just used to sitting around waiting and waiting for a surgery, nurses coming and going while Mark and I sit/lay the same room for at least an hour while saline drips into my arm and I have to think, think, think about the surgery.  I hate that part.

Once I decided I would do the procedure he suggested, someone came to roll me away - and fast!  I hardly got a chance to say goodbye to my husband!  As I was turning the corner I yelled goodbye, and he said goodbye as well, and I saw tears in his eyes.  Like I said, it was so fast, we didn't even get to say goodbye properly, I did not expect that.

Everything else went okay except for some reason when the anesthesiologist was putting the IV needle in my hand, it really, really, really hurt.  Yes, he numbed it, he told me he was doing it, I watched and felt him using some kind of wipe on it, but then as it was going into my vein, oh my gosh that was so incredibly painful!  I did my best not to yell but I'm sure my body came off the table like a cat's and I was grabbing the sides of the bed.  It was so obvious that a couple of the nurses came by and asked him "Did you even numb her first??"  Yes, he did, and afterwards I started to cry.  Not out loud, but I couldn't stop the tears.  He told them I was anxious although I didn't think I was any more anxious than anyone else who would be having surgery, but he must have really believed that because he told me he was putting something in my IV for anxiety.  He asked a little later, when I was being wheeled into the surgery room, if I felt any better and I did not, but I said a little, I don't know why. 

The next thing I knew, I woke up and felt like I had to go diarrhea so bad - it was going to come out at any minute and I needed to get out of bed and find the bathroom.  Obviously the person assigned to me in recovery was not about to let me get out of bed.  I knew where I was and what had just happened to me and was surprised at how I was reacting.  I had read that people woke up in the recovery room screaming from the pain in their stomach - but I felt like I had diarrhea?  All that I can figure out is that the day before was liquids and laxatives day which gave me diarrhea cramps, and I must have associated those cramps with what I felt in the recovery room, only much worse, so I thought I had to *really* go at any second.  My brain didn't understand the signal in my drugged state.  He wanted to use a bedpan, but I refused.  Surely I wasn't rude, but I know I wanted to get up and use the restroom, so who knows what I did or said.  I don't remember what happened until I was being wheeled to my room and felt a bedpan being removed from under me - so I guess he won that battle. 

We met my doctor and Mark at the elevator, and I remember my doctor telling me what he had found which didn't sound good, and Mark followed me to my room.  I looked at the clock when I got to my room - 10PM!!  Yesterday I asked if my GYN was tired when he came to talk to him after the surgery.  He said yes, he looked incredibly tired, so much so that he commented on it, and Mark never does things like that.

I had brought the hospital staff a box of chocolates, and they loved them!  I was treated like a princess, at least until the shift that I had given the chocolates to were there.  I had a roomie, and she was awesome.  I was a chatty Kathy for awhile, and we found we both thought Nordstrom's had the best customer service of any retail store (because it totally does, I love Nordstrom's!), and we both loved Zappos.  We talked about Obamacare, her father was a family doctor and we were actually able to talk about ICD codes and the loss of the solo-practicing family doctor, and honestly?  Who knows what else.  I now know I was out of my flipping mind high on drugs.   But we even found out we have some of the same shoes, so apparently we were describing our shoes, I don't know.  I do know she gave me some good advice on some cute winter boots next year since I told her we had moved from Texas this year.  Later, the curtain was moved back, and she looked like she was maybe 20.  Ha!  Age is just a number. : )  Her mother came to visit her, and I was probably closer to her mother's age, but I think I have more in common with her daughter and I think that's sad - for me.

Around 4a I decided to lower my bed and sleep for a bit.  NOT GOOD.  I woke up in tons of pain.  They gave me pain pills which didn't work, and finally morphine which made me feel better, but not 100%.  That may have been too much to expect. 

They made this huge deal about my asthma.  I had a special doctor visit me because of it, breathe in some kind of tube for her that she left that I was supposed to do 10 times an hour which, no, I didn't do. They gave me a pneumonia shot that they offered for everyone who has asthma which yes, I definitely took advantage of.  Whenever I get any type of respiratory infection, I can't shake it like everyone else can, it takes for freaking ever and my cough is horrible, horrible, horrible.  She gave me something to use with my inhaler that I'd never seen and told me why I should use it which was so smart - I love it.  Yes, I did cough a little in the hospital, and yes, it hurt, but I can't say it wasn't anything unusual.  I didn't need my rescue inhaler although my nurse carried with her in her pocket all the time.  Crazy, they really went a little nuts with it. I'm not the girl in the movie The Hand That Rocks the Cradle!!!!  I kept telling them only exercise and dust triggered it which I should encounter neither in the hospital but...I'm sure they have liability reasons.

I was told in order to leave that day, I had to:  1. urinate, 2. walk, 3. pass gas.  I had walked maybe 3 or 4 hours after surgery, shocking everyone.  I felt that good.  I urinated the next morning, passing gas took a little longer, but my doctor came to see me and said he would release me without it.  However, I did pass gas before I left.

Mark was a sweetheart the whole time.  He brought flowers when he came to the hospital to see me yesterday which is just so thoughtful!  Yes, he does buy flowers for me for special occasions, but just someone thinking to do it is such a nice gesture.  He sat there and waited all day for the surgery, sat there until almost midnight, sat with me almost the whole day the next day and kept me company, and has tried to make my life as comfortable as possible since I got home. 

But now...the pain has really begun.  I cannot miss any pain meds, I pretty much have to stay on top of it - when it's time to take it, I need to take it, and it does not take the pain away, it just makes it bearable. 

So...now I'm on the road to recovery.  The doctor, thankfully with Mark sitting there, said no sex for 8 weeks.  Oh, and I had several fibroids about the size of a golfball, and endometriosis everywhere, on just about every organ and he said he had to do something like a "cancer surgery" to remove it all, so maybe that's why I'm in more pain than what I expected.  I remember him saying it was even on my rectum, how the hell would it have gotten there, as well as my bowels, I can't remember where else, he said just every organ. He's going to show me the pictures on my visit.  And he saw lots of scar tissue from my other surgeries, but I don't know why that wouldn't be expected.  My cervix is gone, with so much endometriosis, I didn't want to take a chance and still have pain by leaving it.

But hopefully, no more periods now!  Yes!  Hello white jeans and shorts!  Bah-bye laying in bed being miserable (after I'm done laying in bed being miserable) : ) And I kept my ovaries, so no early menopause, at least not right this second.

Okay! Enough gore, I like to record things in case I forget for the future!

Hope everyone is doing well! : )

 


 

4 comments:

jenji said...

Hey...


HAPPY UTERUS!

best,

jenji

susie said...

In my opinion, you did the right thing. Get well soon!

KansasSunflower said...

Thanks Jenji! : ) I could have used that cake! Instead, I settled for a quarter pounder with cheese meal from McDonalds on the way home from the hospital - had to do something decadent to treat myself! Mark was beyond shock and just stared at me while I ate it!

KansasSunflower said...

Thanks, Susie, I hope so! The incisions are very small it seems like - extremely small, so maybe it will turn out for the best. Thanks for the well wishes! : )

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