This blog is now retired. My new site is at: Predictably Irrational.

Monday, January 07, 2008

A Day of Recovery

Well, sort of.

I had an outpatient procedure done this morning that required anesthesia, "sedation" as the anesthesia dude called it. And all day I have spent battling a massive headache and neck pain (which for me, tends to be chronically intermittent). I have been rendered useless for the day.

I don't know if it's totally the fault of anesthesia.

We had to wake up at 4 AM to get me to the hospital at 5:15. A hard thing to ask from your 4 and 9 year old who rarely, if ever, need to get up that early. Hey - I'm not used to getting up that early!!

Patients are supposed to arrive two hours prior to their procedures and I was thinking "what the hell am I going to do for two hours?" I swear, it took the entire two hours to prep me.

I had to wear the nice gown. Mi-Mi was asking me prior to getting to the prep partwhat a gown was. I said 'it's a flimsy piece of material you have to wear '. She replied with "What's a gown?"

So she finally got to see it. I thought I was done: clothes off, Tim helped tie me up (in the gown), and I had my fancy new hospital socks on (CJ asked "Do you get to keep those?!" as if I had won the jackpot). But as I contemplated walking to the bathroom, outside of my private Idaho, to see if I could take my nose ring out (no jewelry in the OR), I recalled that my undies were still on. I panicked and looked at Tim, 'do I have to take everything off?' And he was like, yeah, that's what we are here for.

I had a cystoscopy with a radial something to look at my kidneys. Don't worry, everything is fine. I'm going to live.

The IV goes in and it hurts a little, but I'm trying to manage and not panic. Shouldn't I be used to all this pain by needle by now? Anyway, the nurse explains she is putting some antibiotics into my system and it will sting as it goes into my system (it did) and just let her know if I start to itch. I jokingly scratch at my face to Tim.

About a minute later, my arm starts itching. I think it's psychological and then I decide, you know, this is really starting to itch! She turns it down (the amount entering my system) and it helps, but I continue to feel itchy until I'm sedated. I just dealt with it at some point...

I am wheeled from room-to-room. Alone. With other cattle waiting for their call.

I finally get wheeled into the OR room and move from my warm bed to the cold table. But the nurses -- and I've been lucky to have amazingly, sympathetic, warm-gestured people in my life -- wrap me up with some blankets.

The anesthesia nurse dude (why is there two types?) explains what he's going to do: blah blah blah. The last thing I remember hearing is, how are you feeling?

This is very similar to the time I went under for my wisdom teeth removal. My dental surgeon said "Are you ready?" and I'm thinking "Um, I'm still talking to you, aren't I, so no" but it came out loud as "Yes".

The next thing I know I am waking up and the nurses are telling me I'm done. I don't remember everything other than I had the most amazing graham crackers ever and a coke. I vaguely recall given options for drink, to which CJ reminded me that I kept going on-and-on about "They gave me other choices but I can't remember what they were". Which is true, but I'm not quite sure why it was so important for me to figure out.

What I find truly amazing with anesthesia is the on-and-off click that happens to me with this stuff. Same with two other procedures I've had in the past, one being the aforementioned wisdom teeth removal. How can I be speaking in one second and the other out like a light bulb? HOW?? HOW?? HOW??? And then, the ability to snap me out of it!!! And on top of that, having no recollection of anything happening! Well, except for the 'invasion of privacy' pain. Something happened..."down there"... Science is amazing.

I must have asked "Did they take x-rays" several times because the nurse turned to Tim and said "Don't be surprised if she repeats things". I do remember the answer (yes) and that all was clear.

But I slept solid for the next several hours, watched some shows, then tried to get back to sleep. But my head and neck have been KILLING me all day, which is not good, since this is one of my many infamous chronic problems I have that just conjures up bad memories and frustration.

I'm not there yet, but it certainly starts to feel like 'a waste of a day' but I tell myself that it is not.

BTW, not once did I see my doctor. Well, at least I don't remember...

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