Monday, October 10, 2005

Things are just never as easy as they're supposed to be

I actually got a bit of work done this morning which was a good feeling.

Then I went back to the clinic for them to put this thing in my body.

I got up to the 4th floor and suddenly realised I was in for real surgery. I know the drill. The shower with the disinfectant stuff (betadine), the medical gown that never closes properly and gives everyone a constant look at my ass, the funny paper shower cap, the warm socks with the paper shoes. I knew what that meant and I wasn't pleased. Dr. Kanoui had sold this to me as such a minor thing. In it goes and that's it.

They gave me a blue pill which was supposed to calm me down. It takes a lot more than one pill to calm down a nervous, frightened and upset New Yorker!

They took me up to the operating room in a wheelchair and then up on the table. I knew it was going to be local anesthesia but I was really hoping I wasn't going to get any injections. Of course I hadn't thought it through. Of course there is no other logical way of getting the anesthesia in to the area. But logic had no role in my thoughts at the time. I just wanted one procedure, finally, to be easy and painless. This wasn't. This was probably the first time that one of the procedures was actually worse than I had imagined. That's saying something because I have some pretty vivid and imaginative nightmares lately.

They shot me up with the anesthesia, which I definitely felt, and then they covered me up so I could just look at the wall. The doctor kept asking "How are you doing?". How the hell am I supposed to answer that question? I'm lying there, wide awake, with my chest open and in much more pain that I thought I would be. What am I going to say? "Yeah, I'm fine. Having the time of my life. Put on some music and I'll dance..." I just kept lying "Ca va" (OK).

About 20 minutes in to the operation he started saying "presque fini" (almost finished) which brought a bit of hope to my day. It wasn't until 20 minutes later, when he was closing up, that I realised that this guy had an entirely different definition of "almost finished" than I did. Then when he was sewing up he said "quasiment fini" (completely finished) and I was ready to jump up and get the hell out of there. He then proceeded to continue with at least 3 more stitches as well as putting on the bandages.

Finally they let me sit up. All at once I wished I hadn't. I had already sweat a few buckets and now I started shivering. They wrapped me up, put me in the wheelchair and sent me back to the pre-op / post-op rooms. Here I learned that the roller coaster ride was not quite over yet. They let me sit for a while and relax with my legs up. Then the nurse gave me my prescriptions. This was fine by me. Medication generally includes something to relieve the pain so I was pleased ot get my prescriptions. Then she starts explaining the prescription to me.

This first item is the tablet I'm going to give you right now. You don't need to take those any more. This next item is an injection you'll need to have once a day, every day, for the next seven days IN YOUR STOMACH. I looked at her and literally said "Are you kidding?!?!?!". She came back in about 10 minutes and gave me my first injection which covered me for the day. Believe it or not I did not actually thank her.

I got dressed, very slowly, and made my way downstairs. In the condition I was in they wouldn't let me go home alone. I didn't mind but they really could have let us know beforehand that I would need to be accompanied so we could have organised ourselves better. I called Desney on the phone and even though she had a very important deadline for 5 o'clock she was there in front of the clinic in 20 mintes. We got a cab home and I immediately took a painkiller (paracetamol and codeine).

Basically it feels like I've been shot. But it also feels like they forgot to take out the bullet. It's very strange having this weight inside my chest just above my right breast. I'm going to have to get used to it as it'll be there for another 2 months when I get to re-experience today's adventure in reverse (surgical removal of the device).

In the mean time I get to take off the bandages tomorrow morning and a nurse will come and give ma jab every day and then she'll take out the stitches next Monday.

Now I've got pain on both sides of my body and I no longer trust any member of the medical profession. Tomorrow is supposed to be a simple scanner, without injection, and painless.

Yeah... right.

No comments: