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Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Jumped the Shark

The last five days have been the longest (and most painful) five days of my life. Well, except for maybe SBC last year. But that's neither here nor there.

Thursday, I arrived at Baptist Surgicare around 11 a.m. to get prepped for surgery. I was nervous. While I waited in my little curtained prep area for the anesthesiologist, I saw an old woman's ass out of the back of her hospital gown and another woman walk to the bathroom barefoot. Nastiness. Finally, they were ready to take me in. The anesthesia was injected, and the last thing I remember was commenting, "that feels good."

A few hours later, I woke up to the most pain I've felt in my entire life. On a normal morning, I don't wake easily. On a day that I've been injected with a sleep cocktail? I really don't wake easily. I can vaguely remember moaning in pain, and a mean recovery nurse telling me to quit because I was disturbing the other patients. I think she was just being ugly. My only thought: I want my Mommy. I've never been so relieved to see my Mom. I told her to get me out of there. I know I wasn't just being a baby---Mom noticed her lack of bedside manner as well. Baptist gave me a comment card in my post-op packet, and they will get a full report.

We finally got home, and I staggered to the bathroom, I realized I looked like Hitler. I had a "mustache dressing" taped to my upper lip. The blood had collected in a perfect vertical rectangle, a la Adolf. I had very little bruising--just a little on the bridge of my nose and underneath my eyes. The doc did a good job of keeping a steady hand without banging around in my head. Finally Thursday evening, I managed to collapse into the recliner, eat some peach Jello (compliments of Dad), and sleep fitfully for the next few hours.

Friday morning, the doorbell rang and I got some gorgeous flowers from Ben and Brittany. See?
Before the surgery, I hypothesized the pain would be the equivalent of major dental work. I'd be achy for a day, sore the next, and just fine by the next. And all the while, I'd have great drugs to get me through. Well, it didn't take me long to realize that a root canal is a day at the beach comparatively.

At around 3 p.m. on Friday, I took another round of Lortab. About an hour later, I began to feel sick. Very sick. And that adjective soon turned into a verb. I "verbed" until about 8 p.m. and finally there was nothing left in me to "noun." Evidently, one of the main side effects of Lortab is nausea and vomiting.

I thought I would sleep a lot during recovery, but because of the amazing amount of sinus pressure in my head, combined with the congestion in my nose, I slept for a total of about 12 hours those first three nights. At 3 a.m. on Sunday morning, I decided I was "over it." After getting sick about an hour earlier, I clearly wasn't poised for rest. So, I flipped on the tv, and watched all the commercials of the shiny, happy people smiling. As I whimpered, I wondered if I would ever feel normal again. I told myself, "remember to appreciate the times you feel good, Mary Anna." And I reflected for a bit on those that have chronic pain or cancer. I have a newfound respect for their tolerance of pain.

Monday, I had my post-operative visit and got the splints removed from my nose. It's amazing how much pressure disappeared from my noggin when those little potsticker-shaped pieces of plastic came out. I actually smiled for the first time in four days.

The doc was very pleased at the outcome of my surgery. He told my parents that I was already breathing better on the operating table as soon as they'd finished. And during my post-op, he was impressed with my healing, and told me I would see the results from my investment soon.

I'm still not feeling great, but at least I'm much better. I'm still dealing with some lightheadness, sinus pressure, congestion, numb teeth, sore nose, and nosebleeds. And I still don't have my sense of smell back yet. So, I won't return to work until Thursday. Since I was in too much pain to read anything the past week, that's all I plan to do tomorrow.

My parents took such good care of me throughout this experience, that I'm kind of lonely without them tonight. A girl is never too old for her Mommy and Daddy.


Blogger Kristen said...

I'm so happy you are doing okay! :) Surgery is never fun, but on your nose/sinuses...oy. I mean, I just feel like noses have so many nerve-endings, you know? Anyway, rest up, pretty girl.

6:46 PM

Anonymous natalie said...

Oh my Friend, this hurts just to read! I'm glad you are feeling somewhat better and hope the rest comes back quickly!!

11:07 PM

Blogger thesciencegirl said...

I hope you're back to 100% soon!

1:18 PM

Blogger Courtney Baker said...

1. So glad you enjoyed my pregnant picture.

2. Have you blogged about handing out the bags yet.

3. So glad you are starting to feel better.

7:16 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Mary Anna!
I hope you're feeling better now...Take care of yourself :)Ellen in KY

7:49 PM

Blogger Amanda Vilendrer said...

Boo, I'm ready for a new blog... and I'm ready to see you! This weekend, yes?

3:57 PM


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