a little something extra

a little something extra

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Surgery for Dummies


I'm back in the land of the living.
Here's a little account of my experience:

Hubby and I arrived at the hospital at 8:45 AM.  I had checked in and settled up the previous afternoon so we went right up to surgery, where we waited a little while, less than a half hour.  The pre-op nurse, Pam, came to get me and she did THE best job inserting an IV needle ever.  Even though it hurt going in (I think that part is the worst) I had no bruising on my hand.  She helped me on with compression hose (for blood clot prevention) and got me settled in with warm blankets.  Hubby came in to wait with me until it was time to go.

Surgery was scheduled at 10:00 and by 10:20 I was wheeled away down to the OR suites.  I saw my surgeon, Dr. Vyas, the anesthesiologist, Dr. Chuck, and my OR nurse, Bethany.  They all individually made sure I was who I was, that I was indeed born on my birthday, and what parts I was there to have removed.  I passed all the quizzes and was rewarded with more warm blankets.  Naturally, as soon as I was all warm and cozy Bethany moved me into the OR and welcomed me to "The IceBox".  (It's cold in there so the patient's metabolism slows down.)  Dr. Chuck asked me about my job as I swapped guerneys...

...and I woke up in recovery.

The recovery room is really nice and warm.  The nurses talk to you in loud voices, and keep waking you up.  I didn't mind; one of the times I was awake I learned how to use the PCA pump, heretofore referred to as "the Button".  The Button, when pressed, delivered unbelievably good medicine (dilaudid) into my brain.  I was in pain, but hot damn!, I just didn't care.  

The next thing I remember is my room, and the nurse fussing over me and Hubby arriving.  I was stoned out of my mind by this point...Hubby says I was pretty happy...so did my folks when I called them as well as a couple of friends.  The Button allowed itself to be pressed every 10 minutes, and by golly, I can tell time.  Hubby fed me apple sauce, and I had so much fun waiting for the plane (spoon) to arrive laden with yummy mush.

Then it was night.  Pete, my night nurse, put compression cuffs on my calves which alternately squeezed and relaxed my legs, moving the blood around.  It sounds torturous, but was actually very soothing and kept my feet nice and warm because of the forced circulation.  The nursing aide, Marcos, came in and took my vitals; he joked that he'd see the nuns in my room in the morning as my blood pressure and heart rate were so low.  In between interruptions I pressed the Button, drank cranberry juice, and slept.

In the morning I felt pretty good as long as I didn't move, which of course everybody wanted me to do.  After  breakfast--eggs, bacon, juice, coffee and a muffin--the day nurse Irma cajoled ordered me out of bed and we cruised the halls for a bit.  Dr. Oliver (another surgeon) came in to see me and give me the thumbs-up for release.  Irma removed the catheter and IV.  I went back to bed, ate an excellent lunch, and had a long nap.  I woke up in some "discomfort" and I was given a pain pill...not the Button's caliber of pain-killer, I can attest.  Another nap, and Hubby reappeared, this time to take me home.  I was a little afraid to go home, I wasn't sure I'd be OK, I was really hurting by now.  But home we went, and four days later I'm feeling fine as frog's hair.  I've got some nasty bruises around my incisions, but no stitches--the Docs glued me shut!  I took one more pain pill the night I got home and after that I haven't needed them.  I imagine by next week I'll be bored out of my mind.  Thank goodness for all of you to keep me occupied.  Thanks for thinking of me this week.  Thanks for all your cards and emails and comments.  They mean the world to me.

Thank-you Hubby, for being my rock.

And Thank-you Pam, Drs. Vyas, Chuck, & Oliver, Bethany, Pete, Marcos, and Irma for taking such good care of me when my life was in your hands.



Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Fine Example of Frugalness


Last Tuesday I went for my pre-surgical appointment with my Doctor to discuss stuff concerning my hysterectomy.  On the way out, he gave me two prescriptions to fill. 


I thought I'd escaped without having to perform the Dreaded Bowel Prep.  But no, in my hand were orders for a bottle of magnesium citrate and an enema.

Oh wait, that comes later!

So I'm at the pharmacy, standing in front of the (well marked and obviously displayed) LAXATIVE & CONSTIPATION AIDS aisle.  I thought at 48 I was beyond embarrassment but apparently, this is not the case.  First up, the mag citrate, one bottle.  Three flavors to choose from...which one will taste the least awful?  I went for the lemon which had a happy jaunty lemon slice on the label, to help fool you into thinking that the salty, icky poop-spewing liquid was ENJOYABLE to drink.  Like, you would choose to drink that over say, a nice top shelf margarita.  Right.

Next, the enema.

Friends, I want you to know I am NOT an enema expert.  In fact, I think I could be termed an enema novice, if not in fact an enema virgin.  (Mom, you could correct me on this one, but please don't.)  Fortunately, the pharmacy only had two to chose from, the regular and the store brand.  And here's where you get to learn how cheap I am.

They were on sale!  YES!
If you bought two, you could save forty cents on EACH ONE for a total savings of EIGHTY cents.  God, the things I could do with eighty cents.  And if I only purchased one, it was going to cost more than the sale price.  But what in the world do I need a second enema for?  Hubby?  A friend?  A contest prize?  Furthermore, what kind of sick bastard pharmacy puts ENEMAS on sale, for cripe's sake?  Like, there you are, reading the Sunday ads, and you see this:  "Fleet enemas, buy one, get one FREE!"  I bet the door doesn't even hit you on the ass on the way out.

But back to my dilemma; getting two cheap or one more expensively.  Friends, I splurged and only got one.  That was several days ago, and as you can tell, the whole thing is still bugging me.

In fact, it's becoming a pain in my...patootie.

Surgery Tuesday morning at 10 am PST!!

Talk to y'all soon,



Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A Weird Day


Hubby is usually always home.  He works out of the house and herds Kats all day.  (Hard to say which one is more time consuming...)  Today though, he was GONE!  He went to help a buddy paint a rental house that the previously tenants had totally trashed.  In our former lives Hub and I had rentals and managed a couple more units, so we're old hands at turning a property in minimum time on a budget.

ANYWAY, I had the day off and it was WEIRD having the house to myself.  Quiet.  I had to go and do some pre-op stuff like bloodwork and an EKG so I was in and out, and whenever I got home there were MANY pairs of eyes on me and hundreds of toes drumming, as if to say "where have you been and why aren't you waiting on us?"

 I have new respect for the Chief Kat Wrangler at the Katnip Lounge.  These little buggers are demanding!

Six days to surgery!



Monday, February 14, 2011

ack! argh!!


I've neglected all y'all these past few days.  You know that thing, "Life"?  Well, it's been happening a lot recently and I've just been freakin' BUSY!
I have some great ideas for posts, just no time to write.

I'm actually looking forward to being laid up for a while to pursue some sedendary things; reading, writing, and SLEEPING.

I finished "The Lonely Polygamist" and was very happy with the book, I'll certainly reread it in the future.  The prose, changing points of view, as well as the loose ends (I could use my own imagination), were very satisfying. I just started a non-fiction history of cancer titled "The Emperer of all Maladies", which so far has been fantastic!  I was sucked in by the second page.

I have a Kindle (thanks Scott!) which I use for the majority of my reading...but I got some spending money for my Birthday (thanks Mom & Dad!) and I indulged in some actual BOOKS, more on those later.  As much as I enjoy a library, I love Amazon.com even more.  That "one-click shopping" is almost as good as chocolate...

One week to surgery!



Tuesday, February 8, 2011

War is Hell...and so is Work!


Sorry I've been MIA the past couple of days; I've been wiped out from work.

Which is atypical.

Normally, my day consists of watching several computer screens, monitoring the water treatment process, and a little light walking around to check on things.  Nothing too strenuous, mentally or physically. Just the ability to deal with a little boredom when things run right and and a splendid pair of buttock callouses.

BUT...(and you knew this was coming) one of the two treatment plants I operate has been down for yearly maintenance this past five weeks, and since I have the most experience running it (and because I opened my big mouth--when will I learn?) I "got" to start up the plant today.  Yesterday was making sure all systems were operational and today was the actual start-up; from zero to 75 million gallons per day in two hours flat.


Did I mention that I ALSO have excellent clenching ability in my splendidly calloused buttocks?  Starting up the plant is like grabbing a Tiger by the tail; all you can do is hold on and steer.  Really, it all went quite well and when my relief came in (we run 24/7) I was able to hand off operations in good shape.
However, I'm wiped out.
Fork Tender!

I'm off to bed to continue reading "The Lonely Polygamist" by Brady Udall. 
 It's excellent!



Saturday, February 5, 2011

You Girls are GREAT!


All of you go and eat a great big piece of chocolate.  Right now.
No really...you deserve it for donating your uteri to science and reporting back to me with your experiences.

I can't tell you how reassuring it is to hear from all y'all.

Here's a chuckle for the upcoming Spring:

Hubby says he needs a quart...hmmmmmmm.



Thursday, February 3, 2011

Hoping y'all can help me...


Look who I caught napping!

My lazy bums.

Actually, Hubby is gonna be pretty busy soon--February 22 I'm having my useless lady plumbing removed (FINALLY!!) and he'll have his hands full taking care of me for a bit.

Have any of you had the procedure done?  It's gonna be laproscopic, so no big incision, and the OB/GYN is going to take my ovaries and cervix, too.  I took five weeks off of work and I'm hoping that will be enough.
I'm a little nervous, especially the anesthesia part--the whole lack of control thing and the fear of never waking up.  Maybe I can get a hefty Demerol shot before surgery, LOL!

And what about hot flashes and stuff?  I already sweat through a few T-shirts a night so I can't imagine anything getting worse, I hope.

So, any advice?




Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Something Warm on Wednesday

Hello Friends!

Even though we didn't get the terrible snow here in Las Vegas, it's freezingdamncold (for us) here...only 28F at 9 AM!  I'm on the sofa with three Cats and my new snuggie and we are all cozy warm.

I thought I'd better post something warm and cheery--

Mister Bee Pollinating in the Lemon Tree!

Stay safe and warm.