Can you believe I took my computer to the hospital and actually thought I’d be up to posting from there? LOL. Sometimes I crack myself up.
My surgery went well, although it took over three hours. Apparently there was quite a bit of repair work to do after removing my uterus. My stay in recovery was extended due to my extreme nausea, and as a matter of fact I threw up when they were transporting me to my room. I do not react well to anesthesia apparently, because the same thing happened last time I had surgery.
But anyway, while I was still in recovery I created a bit of a sensation—or at least my left hand did. You could say that I was caught red-handed, in fact:
My left hand was covered in tiny red spots all the way up to my elbow. My right hand was just fine and spot-free. It looked like a rash, but no one could figure out what caused it or why it was specific to my left hand. I was a medical mystery! All kinds of people came to look at it and discuss it with each other. They asked me questions, trying to figure out what was different. Even after I was moved to my room, I had a few sightseers come in to check out my hand. Not exactly the kind of celebrity one hopes for. . .
I don’t know if they ever arrived at a definitive answer, but they thought it might be due to a nurse putting the blood pressure cuff below my elbow instead of above before the surgery. Two days later, the redness persists.
Walter and Lina came to spend the afternoon with me on Wednesday, but I’m afraid I wasn’t very good company. It was kind of ridiculous to think I had hoped to go home the same day as the surgery. I was hooked up to so many things: oxygen, an I.V. with morphine pump, inflatable leg cuffs, a catheter, and some kind of monitor on my index finger. I didn’t feel up to sitting up, let alone walking out of there. I had brought my usual types of entertainment—plenty of reading material, a knitting project, and my computer. I didn’t touch any of it. There was a TV in my room, of course, but TV annoys me even at the best of times, so I lost patience with it pretty quickly.
The night was just as much fun as I expected based on past experience. At least they did darken the room for me, but they still came in every hour or so to take my vital signs and at 3:00 a.m. they turned the lights on and came to stick needles in me for lab work. And they still had the nerve to tell me to get a good night’s rest!
Thursday morning I got my hopes up when they took the inflatable cuffs off my legs and removed my catheter. My doctor told me I could leave as soon as I could demonstrate my ability to pee and to keep food down. Over the next few hours, I failed miserably at both goals. My friend Darlene came to visit and told me that morphine had made her very nauseated, so I immediately stopped taking it (not that I had taken very much—but I didn’t want to take chances). I couldn’t even keep water down!
So it was kind of a rough day. My husband kept me company for much of it, and then after he had to leave to go to work, Lina, Spencer and Jasper showed up with flowers and a big “Get Well Soon” balloon! It sure was great to see my kids. They hung around for the rest of the evening.
I had finally passed the “pee” test in the afternoon, so I was just waiting to prove my ability to keep food down. My supper arrived (I am going to do a whole post about the food) and I spilled salad dressing all over myself, but I was able to eat a few bites of salad and keep them down, so I declared victory. My papers were processed, and Walter returned to give me a ride.
The nurse wheeled me down in a wheelchair, and we pulled out of the parking lot at 8:00. Boy did it feel good to be driving away from that place! I have accepted the fact that at my age, it may take a little longer to bounce back from surgery, but I am just so happy to be in my own house. There were some lovely pink tulips waiting for me at home—a gift from one of my students.
So what have I done today? My main accomplishment was taking a shower. I am alternating between resting and being up to do things (easy things like drinking a cup of tea). I’m not allowed to lift anything heavier than 10 pounds for the next two months, so that definitely limits my options. I have opted not to fill my prescription for Tylenol 4, and am managing my pain okay with regular ibuprofen. (Can you tell I am not a fan of narcotics?) I am still fighting a respiratory infection, and I’m sure you can imagine how much fun it is to cough when you’ve just had abdominal surgery. My poor husband has been sick for over a week now and I think he rested almost as much as I did today. It is very rare for him to be sick for more than a day or two.
I was delighted to receive a phone call from Flynn this evening and hear more about his and Tiffany’s new house. And Lina has been a champ, going grocery shopping for me and taking care of the food. I haven’t seen much of Lucy as she left on a rugby trip today.