Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The tonsillectomy

Suni and I arrived at the hospital at 10:45 a.m. yesterady, where we were seated in a waiting room and assigned a pager. (Yes, a pager… like you get at busy restaurants). We waited forever.  When I was finally called back, a nurse named Connie prepped me by having me disrobe, put on the hilarious hospital gown. Then she started an IV and gave me Keflex, an antibiotic, as well as a liquid dose of a steroid for inflammation, both via IV. I do not think I was given anything to clam me down, although I did talk her ear off out of sheer nervousness. She gave me phenergan (promethazine) for nausea. The anesthesiologist and the nurse anesthetist then came and took my history, explained everything to me.  I talked their ears off, as well.  (Maybe they did give me something for anxiety?)

Next, the surgeon, Dr. Garman, appeared.  His first words were, "Do you really want to go through with this?  I can't believe you showed up."  Again, what the hell?  Just when I was ready to make a "run" for it, he ensured me that he was kidding and told me I needed to have it done.  (The condition of my tonsils as observed in surgery would indeed confirm that opinion).  

He then informed me about my drug regimen. Dilaudid!! I am so relieved that I don’t have one of those masochistic doctors who would have prescribed me Tylenol 3. He also have me some tetracaine lollipops that should help me get food and drink down.

They wheeled me down to the surgery area. The anesthesiologist explained that it was time, and she wheeled me down to the surgical suite.  The next thing I knew I woke up in the triage area. A new nurse was taking care of me. Surprisingly, I talked that poor lady’s ear off. I don’t remember this, but they reported that my first words as I was coming out from under anesthesia were “Can I please have a pen and paper?” The nurse brought me a pen, and I proceeded to write on the back of my medical chart. Only I would insist that I be provided these things immediately upon returning to consciousness. I also don’t remember writing what I wrote, but the nurse made a copy of my scribbling for me, and this is what it undeniably says.

I know Garman Garman,” it begins. What the hell? Dr. Garman is my doctor, and I think I meant to write "I love Dr. Garman... but… what the hell? Beats me. It continues: “This is not neurosurgery.” Um... no, nor was it a labotomy, but, why did I feel the need to state the obvious? Seriously, what is wrong with me?  Finally, something that makes sense: “Nurse told me to shut up, and she was well justified in doing so,” I next mused.  OK, so I was getting somewhat coherent and self-aware by that point. But I still wasn’t finished. “Persistently asked for pen and paper – embarrassing.” Definitely. Finally, “Don’t understand my compulsion to talk to this poor nurse.” Wow, I am weird.  The nurse came to the recovery room when I got down there just to meet Suni.  She said "I had to meet the woman that actually married this guy."  I wonder how many people have made that bewildered inquiry over the last nearly four years.   

I am 20 hours post-surgery and my pain is actually non-existent, except when I swallow!  Although I was warned that things will get progressively worse, I assumed my baseline would be more pain than 0/10 on the pain scale.  I did not think I would be able to blog or get any work done, but, alas, here I am.  I am so glad I had the surgery done.  I can breathe through my nose for the first time in years!  As crazy as it sounds, I feel much healthier already!

Happy New Year's Eve, people!!

1 comment:

jenni said...

WOW!! I bet that nurse was laughing her ass off at you!! What a freak! Who asks for a pen and paper right out of surgery? Most people ask where there wife/husband is, but not you, gotta have the pen and paper!!

You and your posts are cracking me up, keep it up!!