Tuesday, July 15, 2014

More Hurdles.

****** I started this entry about a week ago and just couldn't get my mind around it. There was a lot more to my hospital stay but I'm so mentally exhausted I can't recall details and all of it. I'm just too tired. So here's the gist of it anyway. ******

Hello all. I haven't written since my surgery on the 23rd. Recovery while in the hospital was brutal and since being home I just haven't had it in me. I'm hurting. I'm tired. Everything I do wipes me out for two days. My incision is hot pain. I'm sure the scar tissue adds to that. But I'll back the story up.
I went home to NY and ate like a pig the week before surgery and it was glorious. Pizza, Greek food, more pizza, chicken finger subs, oh my!! I had the best time with my cousins and seeing my Gram and a bunch of girls I miss a lot.
I came home Sunday and needed to be on liquids all day. I cheated and had breakfast Sunday morning b/c by now I know it was safe and I had time for it to be a nonissue. So let's just reference my meal at about 1130am Sunday.
My surgery was Monday morning. I arrived and got my IV and everything ready to go. All my Hossie flair and "fall risk" bracelet which is my personal fave.

Hospitals are cold. Yes, that's a scarf. I know it's summer.

Apparently they used some new pain blocking situation( the name escapes me) and has been shown to reduce use of opiates after surgery as it dulls/hinders pain receptors for 72 hours after surgery. If that's the case, I don't want to know what it would have felt like without it. I woke from surgery hurting and groggy. I had my PCA that allowed me to use it for a mini amount of Dilaudid every 8 minutes. It's such a low amount it's practically useless. Something like 1/100th of a milligram. I was allowed a push of .5mg of Dilaudid every 4 hours which would have been great except for lucky me, my blood pressure was way too low for them to give it to me. So for the most part I was suffering the first 3 days post Op. BP being 88/56 isn't gonna fly. Nope. So yeah. Just total shit. It didn't matter that my normal BP is like 90/70 on a good day. They wouldn't give me anything. So it wasn't until I was about 3-4 post OP when I finally got some relief. And they had me up and moving already. And was still nothing by mouth(NPO). Not even ice. Yeah. So fun. My first attempt at liquids with a bunch of Zofran was a disaster so that redid the clock in terms of me eating. The popsicle didn't make it and neither did the 3 tablespoons of broth. By then I was 5 days with nothing to eat. So I was pissed. And once again facing the possibility of an NG shoved down my nose and throat. Oh did I mention my hemoglobin level dropped to 7. Yeah that's transfusion level low. So all this was happening at once. IT NEVER GETS EASIER. Ever. NO matter how many times I've gone through this and am mentally prepared for starving for 4-5 days easily and then the pain of your guts working and/or NOT working, it is never easy. It is just horrible every time. Being attached to an IV pole and having no choice but to drop to the hospital floor and barf in the garbage can is insane. Because hospital floors #1 are so clean. I hit the call button and basically jumped. They raced in because they answered the call and I didn't respond.  #2 Meeting your next RN for the next 12 hours while face first in the trash is swell.
Luckily I didn't need a transfusion although I wouldn't have minded getting topped off because it makes me feel so great!
Finally-- 4 days after surgery I could handle liquids. Well, a sip here and there. GI surgery is just so brutal. Your guts don't have to work for months, the surgery shuts them down even more and then trying to get them to work again and not get sick is such a slow road. I've done it way too many times. So on day 5 post OP I got FULL liquids which is still slop but better than unidentifiable broth.
It's all just so exhausting. Being hungry and thirsty makes you nuts. I can't even remember how many times now I've gone 4,5,6 days with nothing to eat or drink. An ice chip here or there. It breaks you. It continually amazes me what I have gone through. I know I'm different now. I try hard not to let it happen but when so many days you have the shit end of a situation you get bitter. No matter how hard you try sometimes, it creeps in. You see things differently and react differently. You resent what you can't do normally anymore. You hate yourself. You feel betrayed by your own body. I have always lived my life in the moment. Ok, today I'm flaring. Ok right now I need surgery etc... but it's always been with a given idea that the funk will pass and things will be good again. After THIS surgery. AFTER this gets better. After 5 years of thinking things will be good after yet another issue, I don't know if I have IT anymore. I don't know how to explain it other than I've defeated myself. Kinda. I'm not done yet but I'm 3 weeks post Op and it's not like everything is perfect. I'm happier without the ostomy but I can't lie. I have moments where I definitely weigh the pros of having one. There are cons even with the best case scenario it would seem. Bummer.

But I'm pushing on. Dealing with being wiped out after doing something normal for a few hours. I have to. Being normal is costly. 1-2 days afterwards are useless. I'm a slug. I just need to get through THIS recovery and everything will be ok... right???

Thanks for reading. XO

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