Well, Monday has come and gone. I had my surgery! I have entered the two week period of “What did I just do to myself!” and the endless sipping of liquids.
The surgery went well. After surgery I had an extremely difficult time for a few hours with the nausea and being paler than usual. It took whoever brings up the meds an hour and a half to get me the anti-nausea meds. I was not happy about the response time at this hospital. They did turn the temperature up in the room, which helped, and I finally settled into sleep.
Dear Laura, who has been with me now through two surgeries, delivered me to the hospital in the morning darkness and was sitting by my bed for hours. Finally, she went home and I settled into getting woken up every two hours to walk, take meds, vitals, etc. I did walk for the first time later that evening, and again at 3 AM and more frequently thereafter.
I couldn’t have water until I passed the dye test on Tuesday morning, which was a bit of a surprise to me. Not even ice chips. The nurse brought me swabs to keep my mouth moist. After doing the breathing treatments, my throat already sore from the surgery, I was ready for those swabs!
The nurses began saying I would go home Tuesday if I passed the dye test – my doctor was infamous for sending patients home as soon as possible to recoup. I had all my tests extremely early that morning and then around 1 PM the doctor came in and told me I could go home.
The discharge nurse then told me I had to fill the pee pan to a certain level before SHE would let me go home. Keep in mind my stomach now only holds four ounces of anything and I had been denied liquids until about 11 that morning.
I had gathered a bit of water, Gatorade, sugar-free lemonade around me and started sipping. And sipping. And sipping as much as my tiny pouch would hold. Output was slow. I’ll be honest, it was 4:30 before I made the offering satisfactory to my nurse!
Finally, I was able to come home and climb into my recliner and start sipping more liquids. I took my pain medicine as soon as Laura brought it to me. I must have drank it too fast, because I had my first experience with dumping syndrome (cramps, nausea, and a fever spike). I’m glad I got that out of the way – I do NOT want to go through that ever again and now that I know what it feels like, I will walk the straight and narrow! (which is not easy to do alone and out of it).
My college roommate, Becky, helped take care of her sister, Sarah, when she had the surgery a few years ago. Becky was her drill sergeant and made sure she did all her breathing exercises, drank her fluids, etc. They both made the offer to help me out and every day they have been chatting with me, and the accountability is wonderful. If you’ve ever seen the Beckster Stare of Disapproval you don’t ever want to see it again! I’m so grateful for them and their help!
Now I need to sip. I can hear Becky saying that from far away. Just keep sipping. Just keep sipping. Just keep sipping…