Thursday, December 4, 2008

What a day!

From another of my blogs

Yesterday: Nothing to fear...

...but fear itself.

My husband is having surgery in less than 12 hours.  He seems unconcerned.  I'm terrified.  I can't talk to him about it because he'd say it was ok, he's going to live forever.  Yadda Yadda.

But I can't help myself.  All these scary scenarios keep running through my mind and it disturbs me.  I haven't been afraid of my own surgeries.  Why does his scare me?  Was he maybe afraid when I had mine but we didn't talk about it?

12 hours from now I hope to be posting that all is well, he's better than ever, going to get out of the hospital sooner than planned.

I'm saying my prayers and have people praying for him and for me.  Maybe it's always harder on the person who isn't the patient, the one who waits for the good news while trying to stay calm.

So now I try to sleep, so I can be calm tomorrow, ready for whatever news the surgeon brings.


Today: What a day!

Yesterday was so long, tiring, hunger-inducing, maddening, yet a blessing!

We got up early to be at the hospital by 7:30 am.  We were a "tad" late, of course, so I dropped DH off at the front door to fend for himself with the paperwork.  I found a parking place right where I always parked when he had his initial incident.  WooHoo. 

This parking lot is very terrible.  They're tearing it up to put in another medical building and a parking garage.  The garage will help eventually but now it makes parking a nightmare.  Some of the staff has to park at my church and be shuttled over.

So, we got to the waiting room, tastefully decorated with monitors showing a tropical fish tank and a gas fireplace.  Very soothing.  Not!

But it wasn't too long before he was called back.  The nurse, Doris, was very nice and we actually had a few laughs and it was kind of pleasant - for me, anyway.

There was a moment of fear when the vampire was putting in the IV.  She wanted to do the right side because his surgery was going to be on the left.  He wanted the right side.  They had quite a discussion about that and I was afraid that DH might change his mind and we'd just go home.  He won, though, with the caution that they might have to change it when he got into surgery.

The pastor from my church came in and we had a nice discussion that ranged from diabetes and the inability to give himself the shots to the Roman Catholic Church to the combat engineers.

The anesthesiologists came in had DH practice with the squeaky toy he'd need to use during surgery to show that they hadn't cut any vital nerves or anything really important.  I don't know where they found it but it was a dog toy that looked like a head with brains spilling out over the top.  EEEWWWWWWWWWW

The surgeon came in just at 9 and reminded us of all the possible things that could go wrong.  All my worst fears.  My minister prayed, I gave DH (not the minister!) a kiss and he was gone.

M and I went back to the waiting room.  He sat with me a while and asked me if I'd eaten and I said no but it was ok.  I didn't usually eat until 2-3 or so.  After a while he left and i went to the bathroom.  While I was in there, my friend showed up and was asking the desk folks where I was and they didn't know (of course).  So, she turned around and there I was.  Amazing.

We went to the cafeteria - good thing! but they only had donuts, bagels, coffee, a little fruit since it was so early.  It was getting close to 11 and the surgeon said it would take about 2 hours so, after glancing quickly at the craft fair in the lobby, we went back to the waiting room.  As promised, the surgeon came out about 11:20 and said that everything went well.  DH did have to have a drain but that was ok.  That the plaque was hemorrhagic. They got all the gunk cleared out and everything was looking fine.  Great!

I called everyone I'd said I'd call to give the good news of a successful surgery.  Yea!

So, my friend and I chatted for awhile, waiting to go see DH.  And chatted.  And waited.  And chatted...

I went to the desk to see why I wasn't going back.  They said he probably didn't have a room yet.

We chatted and waited some more.  2PM Doris came out to talk to another patient.  She said she'd see what was up with DH.  Never saw her again.

More chatting, waiting.  Asked another staff person who said maybe DH was too dizzy (?), he was still in Recovery One. Whatever.

Friend had to leave.  It was about 3. 

About 3:30 I called and left a message that I might not make bell rehearsal that night.  I was tired, hungry, hadn't even seen DH yet, was sure the dog was really messing up the house.

Surgeon came out from another surgery wand asked why I was still there.  I told him and he said that 4 hours in recovery was standard for this surgery.  I said that no one had told me that.  I could have eaten, gone home to walk the dog, not been worrying about what was happening in the back.  That PO'd me just a bit.

There were only 3 of us left in the waiting room and it was getting dark.  Finally, about 5, they told me he was in a room.  I gathered my stuff up and found him on the 5th floor.

He looked good except for the bandage on his neck and the drain. We talked for a while and he wanted a book so I said I'd go home and get it and take the dog out etc.

Amazingly, the dog hadn't done anything in the house at all.  She's only 6 months old and I was amazed at her self-control.  I took her out, gave her a little dinner while I tracked down the book. I had a handful of honey almonds (most nut-ritious!) and a bit of stale coffee.

Back to the kitchen for her, back to the hospital for me.  This time it was very hard finding a parking place - and my gas was getting very low.

DH was in his room chomping down dinner. We went for a little walk around the perimeter of the floor and that was kind of tiring.  Talked for a bit.  He's going to slow down and work less.  We're going to travel more.  I've heard all this before so I nodded and said uh huh when appropriate.  We'll see.

About 8 or he was fading so I left.  I could have turned left out of the hospital and gone to the end of rehearsal but i didn't.  I went right and to the grocery store where I got 2 small bags of chips and a sub - and some real stuff.

I took the puppy out again, gave her dinner, called my best friend.  We talked for about an hour, me sipping some wine.  I had my 2 bags of chips, my sub, finished my wine and zonked out, exhausted.

He's coming home today.  The drains, IVs and all are out now, I think.  I have to go back in about half an hour to get him or to wait for the discharge papers.

Then, I'll bring him home, get settled, and head off to my temporary job. After about 7 tonight I can sleep.  Yea!

Then, tomorrow I pick up my Mom to take her to the dentist and the next round begins...