Friday, October 22, 2010

Anita Aire

In my hospital room there is a board that has places to write the nurse's name, physician's name, etc.  I was looking for something to do and I decided I would rewrite the names on the board.  There is a place for the Respiratory Therapist's Name and the name there wasn't current so I decided to make up one. 

Respiratory Therapist's Name:  Anita Aire

I called my mom and my friend and told them about my new respiratory therapist and we giggled.  Then I waited for a response from staff.  Well, the new nurse and nurse's aid came in and changed their names.  I thought I could tell they were looking at the other names on the board, but not even a grin.  Then the new respiratory therapist came in.  I thought for sure there would be at least a comment.  Nothing.  She simply erased Anita Aire and put her own name.  Tough crowd.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Surgery and Sudoku

After a few months hiatus I am attempting to be a blogger again.  The last few months have certainly been eventful.

In July, I moved in with my friend and her family.  I was hoping to be as non-obtrusive and non-burdensome as possible.  I was nervous for a week, feeling my way around the family flow and rules.  Then things settled down and were more comfortable.  It has been a blessing in many ways.  Not only a blessing in helping me get back on my financial feet, but now that I live with people, it's very difficult to binge in solitude every night.  And eating with people keeps my portion sizes down a little.  Although unknown at the time, I would also be facing some health problems (explained below) that would pretty much make my non-burdensome goal impossible.  But again, blessed to live with friends who wouldn't think twice about taking care of me.  Living alone when these things happened would have been very difficult to say the least.

At the end of July, I found out that I needed a hysterectomy.  So, August 10th I went under the knife.  I made up a song a couple days before to commemorate the occasion.  It's called:

"The Hysterectomy Blues"
(na na na na) Oh I gotta go to Salt Lake to get a hysterectomy
(na na na na) I'm a little nervous, cause it won't be a cup of tea
(na na na na) I'll be sore and in pain, you see
(na na) But one good thing about it is Aunt Flo's history.
I got the Blues, the Hysterectomy Blues.

I sang it to the surgical team right before I went under and they got a kick out of it.  They said it had been years since someone had sang to them...And then I was out....

I woke up in excruciating pain, pushing my narcotic button every second, until I was informed that it only worked every 10 minutes...  I was wondering at that point if I could change my mind and have them put it all back.  After a day or two, the pain was usually bearable.  I had packed a bag full of "to do" things for when I was bored in the hospital...cross stitch, books.  I didn't touch the thing.  I was too loopy or in pain to be bored.  And I couldn't move.  I would try to watch TV, turn the channel to the guide and wake up 3 hours later with it still on the guide.

I spent 5 days in the hospital and came home to my friend's house, with an 11 inch incision, 45 staples, and a Foley catheter (my bladder got nicked during surgery and needed to heal).  My friend and her family graciously took care of me for a couple of days.  Her kids got walky talkys so I could call someone for help if I needed it.  It was cute of them. :)  I then spread the service blessings to my sister, who I stayed with for about 10 days recuperating.  I really have never needed someone to take care of me in years and it was humbling.  I was grateful to have people in my life willing to wait on me and help me during this time.

The next few weeks of recuperation would be interesting.  I dealt with things from urinary tract infections to pneumonia to tendinitis in my foot to my incision coming apart.  I also came home from surgery tethered to oxygen.  It's been a difficult recovery.  I got back home to my friend's house and at some point my friend was driving me and my severe chest pain to the ER.  I said, "Gee, when you said I could stay with you for a few months, you had no idea what you were signing up for did you."  She just chuckled.  I mentioned that maybe she needed blessings and she said that maybe I was there because I needed someone to take care of me.  That I was meant to need to move out my apartment and need to live with them.  Either way, I am grateful for the help and care.  There are many people who's support has been immeasurable.  Whether it be rides to doctors appointments or moral support.  I am grateful for everyone, family and friends, who have served me during this time.  And I am learning to accept that service.

I am now back in a hospital room.  This is day 10.  My latest ailment has been a pulmonary embolism (blood clots in my lungs...3 of them).  The clots themselves my body will dissolve on it's own, but I need to be on medication to prevent further clots.  Although the first few days I was quite ill in ICU, in pain and unable to move without my oxygen dropping, I'm feeling better and I can mostly take care of my needs again without my oxygen dropping.  I can go home when the Coumadin I'm taking causes a blood test (INR) to be at least 2.  As of this morning it's 1.9.  I'm hoping I'll hit the magic number by tomorrow, but we'll see.  This will help prevent further blood clots from forming.

This time around in the hospital, I have been bored.  I been spending my time doing Sudoku, cross-stitching, work puzzles, facebook games, TV...Insanity is closing in. Bwah ah ah ah ah  :P

Hopefully, I'll get out by the weekend and feel good enough to get back to work at least part time by next week.  I need some structure and schedule back in my life.  And no more setbacks!!

Oh...and between living with other human beings and being ill, I've lost close to 30 lbs.  I haven't been able to exercise, but hope to get back to it soon.