Friday, April 25, 2008

A funny thing happened on the way . . .

. . . to surgery. I asked Sunday night what time I was scheduled for surgery Monday, the 21st. They had me down for NPO (meaning I couldn't eat nor drink after midnight) so I knew I was going *sometime* Monday, just not when. *They*(nursing staff) said patients who were already patients usually went before those who were just coming in for their surgery, so that meant I probably would go early. Wow! Wonderful vague answer! Sure to be number one on the charts. What charts, I do not know, but surely there is a chart somewhere it could land on. No need to worry about it, though, I already had my bed, and I was staying put until I saw those nurses from OR. They could watch me grip my myasthenic / diabetic neuropathy hands as I held on to the rails of my bed with sheer determination. I would not, never ever give up my bed. Breakfast trays come and go to other patients as I wait to go to my destination. Hmmm, do you know what time they serve breakfast in the hospital? Not early, that's for sure! In anticipation, I begin to prepare my *stuff* on my bed for removal. I keep my computer, and *tech toys* there with me during my stay, putting them away whenever I am away from my room. Well, wouldn't you know it!! Just as soon as I get started doing that, in walks nursey April, "Come on. They want you in surgery NOW! They want a stat blood and urine!" Okay by me, but hey, I'm only the patient here, I don't draw blood as I am not a phlebotomist, and I only give the urine in special containers of which I have not been given one. Then in walks sweet, always smiling Shirley from the lab with all of her little pokems and vials that will not affect me from this day forward, for when she asks if I have a port, I'll be able to say "Yes!", and will not need to have my veins stuck and abused again! I have another picture of Shirley while doing her job (professional and impressive), but I wanted you to see her sweet smile. For a year she has been coming to my bedside, and for a year she has worn that same sweet smile, and brought good blessings to my room. It makes me smile just thinking about her as I am typing this. She may frequently be the first person you see in a day at St. Francis-Bartlett because she often comes to your room about 4:00 a.m. Ouch! That's a bright light she turns on!

By the time Shirley is finished with her vampire work, nursey April is back with the special little cup, and we go to the bathroom to get that specimen. While we are in there, who in the world do you think shows up outside my door? My surgeon!! He is looking for me! Wants to know where I am. Yep, sir, Dr. Surgeon. I was wondering when I'd get to come visit you in your suite, since we last met in mine. Now I'm beginning to have some idea of when it might be. Ah, ha! And as I told you, I would remember your name easily, Dr. Hammond. I played on many Hammond organs in my lifetime, and in many different places. I'm ready, how about you? Ooops! (I didn't really say all of that; I didn't even see him ;) Before I can even waddle back to my bed, two OR nurses
(Donnie, I wish it had been you) are walking into my room. They help me into my bed, swish! everything's off of it quickly. Then we're out of my room, but . . . I am still in my bed! We go this way and that way until through double doors we go where bright lights blazon overhead. We turn left into a private little room, in which a bed resides in the center. Hmmm. . . now where is my bed going to fit? You don't think . . . Well, first the nurses take my ears from me, and puts them into a cup . . . my new ears into a paper cup! Can you imagine? The audacity! Another one of them is the anesthesiologist, and I told her I have Myasthenia Gravis, and *I* wanted to wake up when all was said and done!! She ASSURED me she was on the same page with me and *My* myasthenia gravis, meaning she knew the risks, and also understood my fears of the anesthesia, that anesthesia and myasthenia are not friends with one another. She was sweet. I remember her face very well; too bad I didn't have a pink or red camera left with me in my bed! Not that anyone would even think that something like that might, could, or whatever happen. Crazy!

Okay, now cames the time. They sweet talked me out of my bed! Yeppers! That's what they did. Since I had just had the IVIG treatment, my legs were able to cooperate more than exactly one week ago when I entered St. Francis-Bartlett, and I guess you might say I was a willing participant, too. Although nice and sweet, though tricky-talking to get me out of my one and only !wonderful bed!, on to this cold, stark, stretcher-looking bed with a HUGE light hovering --hopefully securely-- above it, they couldn't or wouldn't even give me a pillow for my head!

And look . . . that is the funniest, oh, my . . . oh my . . . my box of toothpicks from my room! My box of toothpicks had been beneath me all of that time from when I got back into my bed in my room from the bathroom, and my jaunty little trip down to the OR. Lying on toothpicks. *shaking my head unbelievingly and laughing* Luckily they were all in the box. We all got a tickle from that before they played their dirty little trick on me when they just had me breathe slowly. That's all there was to it. Simple. Remember, too, that one or more (I bet on the more ;) were out of sight, and without my ears, so out of hearing (set me up good, huh?), behind me.

All done. What? Done? What do you mean done? I never even got to see Dr. Hammond. At least I'm not sure I didn't. There was a fleeting moment before I remember nothing that I *think* may have been him. Guess I will never know, or at least until I go in to see him for my follow-up appointment in, uh, how many weeks? Where? Was Jim there to find out? What all went on? Good grief!! What had gone on without my knowing it?!?!

Those nurses. Does Donnie act like them? Does she sweet-talk people into giving up their wonderful beds to get over and lie on one of those cold, stark, stretcher-looking beds with a HUGE light hovering --hopefully securely-- above it, looking beds? Oh, I hope not. Not my daughter-in-law, the BEST daughter-in-law in the world, the ONLY daughter-in-law I have!! You would NEVER believe what they said about me. I am appalled. They said as soon as I awoke, I started talking!! Me? Surely not me? AND, surely they had not been put up to saying that by someone else in my room. Hmmm, I wonder; I think. Possibility?

Well, at least they knew I was alive and very, very well; my mouth muscles were in motion. But look at the mess they left me in! Painted me up ORANGE! Oh, yes . . . also when I woke, I was back in my own bed, coming into my own room. Did I know about moving back to it down in Dr. Hammond's suite? Part of me thinks I did, part of me thinks I didn't. Now how's that!?!? Nice. Score one for the hospital.

It was not long until all was perfect, and that was when I woke from a doze, and woke to see my sweety standing there in his blue shirt. I remember how nice he looked in it. Better than that, though, was the smile on his face. That said it all.

He left after a while to go to Betty's, his niece, in West Helena to have lunch with her, then he was coming back to the hospital to spend the night with me. I was probably going home the next day, and this would be the easiest on him (and definitely much happier on me). Yes, it would be easier on me, too, because no matter how much, or how hard they try there at the hospital, there just isn't anyone to measure up to him, and his care of me.

He helped me wash off the orange. Sweet.

So, this is my little excursion I took on Monday, the 21st, and from all I hear I will be very pleased with having the port. Looking at this, do you think I might? This is just one arm, plus this does not show the six sticks for just one successful one during the week before the surgery.

I just want to say "Thank you" to everyone at St. Francis-Bartlett, and especially Admin/Holding and the 3rd floor, both of whom have made a part of my life much easier just because of the way, and who you all are! Thanks especially to April on the day of surgery.

Striving for a world without Myasthenia Gravis

1 comment:

Cara said...

Hello Granny. I am glad you underwent treatment without any major glitches or complications. I hope your bruise etc. heal quickly.

By the way, in our hospitals over here, we don't use that term you mentioned...NPO...we use NBM which means : nil by mouth (no food or drink for the patient).

Hope you have a wonderful Sunday.



GD Cara ;-)