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Home and Recovering

Okay, so obviously Jim posted the last few entries.  There is no way I would have told you I had to pee into a Dixie cup, nor would I have spelled Dr. Nusbaum’s name wrong.  I might have even spelled anesthesiologist correctly. 

The day before surgery, we had the kids packed up and took them to my mom’s.  We were supposed to get a call from the hospital between 4 and 8 PM to tell me where to go and what to do.  By 8:30, I had no phone call.  Dr. Nusbaum’s office has not been very communicative, so I was worried.  I phoned the office and got the answering service, who paged Dr. Bilof, Dr. Nusbaum’s partner.  They told me if he didn’t call back in 20 minutes, I could call them and they would page him again. 

By just after 9, I still had not heard, so I phoned the answering service, and they called him again.  He was clueless.  He didn’t know what time to tell me to be anywhere or what I needed to do.  He suggested I phone the hospital, which is what I thought I should do from the beginning, but Jim told me to call the office.  There are reasons why I don’t listen to Jim. 

Finally, I got through to the hospital, and they found a nurse who told me that they had my phone number wrong, but they had been trying to reach me.  I got my details, and was told I had to be at the hospital for 6 AM – and the hospital is an hour and a half away.  Yay – just where I want to be at 4:30 in the morning – the turnpike!

We got to the hospital with no problems, and everyone was very nice.  I didn’t wait too long before they were calling me back to be prepped for surgery.  The anesthesiologist came in and talked to me, and I mentioned to him that I had to be stuck a bunch of times for my c-section with Granuaile.  He had a line in with no pain in just a few seconds. 

Pretty soon, I was back in the pre-op area, waiting to be taken into surgery.  Dr. Nusbaum, who had met me in the room where I got my gown and stuff, came out to let me know that the room that was reserved for me was being used for an emergency, so we had to wait.  I am not sure how long I waited, and I honestly don’t remember a whole lot from the point where Dr. Nusbaum came.  I know I was waiting a while on the table, and I may have fallen asleep.  The anesthesiologist came out and gave me a sedative through my IV to take the edge off the anxiety while I was waiting, and I think that knocked me out.  I don’t remember being wheeled into surgery, seeing the operating room, nothing.  I wish they had given me that before I left home.  I cried all the way to the hospital, worried about whether or not I made the right decision.

Next thing I know, I was in recovery, with the doctors and nurses telling me to take deep breaths as they removed my breathing tube.  By 3:30 or so, I was in a room, but in a bit of pain.  They had a morphine pump there that I could hit the button on every 10 minutes to get a dose, and I know I hit it a few times.  I spent most of the rest of the day sleeping, and since I was unable to eat or drink anything, I didn’t have to go to the bathroom until much later in the day.  That’s when they told me I had to use the bedpan 🙁   UGH.  I wasn’t happy about that and asked when I would be allowed up.  When they told me the next morning, I knew I could hold it all night long, but what an awful, humiliating experience.  I’m glad that’s over.

Wednesday, I spent most of the day without the pain meds and started walking around the halls.  I felt a little uncomfortable, and they gave me a shot, since I had told them they could disconnect the morphine.  It made me nauseous, and I really felt like I was past the point of needing pain meds.  The shot made me really drowsy, and I’m afraid I slept most of the time Jim was there visiting.  I was able to drink one ounce of fluid an hour, and I did pretty good getting it in.  I couldn’t believe that tiny little bit of fluid was taking so long to get down.

We are in the middle of a terrible heat wave – temps over 100 degrees – and my room at the hospital must have been the epicenter of the heat wave.  I spent the whole time sweating and uncomfortable.  They let me take a shower on Thursday, but by the time I got dressed, I was sweating again.  Dr. Bilof came in to see me, and I asked him about going home.  He told me Friday morning.  I pushed as to why I wasn’t going home that day, and he said with the heat wave, I ran a greater risk of being dehydrated, so unless I could get 4 ounces of fluid into me in an hour, I wasn’t going to be able to leave.  He said if I consistently got 4 ounces an hour in, the nurxe could call him in the afternoon and he would let me go home.

Let me tell you, I drank my heart out – and I still think I came up short some hours – but at 3, the nurse finally called him and he said I could go home.  When I stepped outside, waiting for Jim to bring the car around, I thought I had made a huge mistake.  It was sooooooo hot out.  But soon, the air in the car kicked in and we were making our way back home, and I felt better.

Thursday night, I slept like a log.  I barely moved, and I know I slept pretty much from about 10 until 7 this morning.  And then at 7, I only got up to use the bathroom, and then went back to sleep until 9:15.  It was so nice to have that luxury, but better not to have a nurse over you every hour all night long with some test or some piece of information they needed.

I know I have a long way to go, but as of today, I am off the pain meds entirely and have no pain except a stiff neck.  I am down 13 pounds since I went into the hospital, so I feel pretty darn good about that.  I pray, and hope you will continue to pray as well, that I have no complications.  The first few days have been mostly a breeze – I would hate to think that it’s going to get bad from here.