|East Coast Trip 2010|
Well surgery day arrived. March 8, 2007. The day of the bilateral mastectomy. I woke up and it was so dark outside. I had to be at the hospital by 6:00 am. I was not allowed to eat anything so I tried not to think about how awesome an egg McMuffin and a coffee would be. Mike drove me in to the hospital and we both felt oddly at ease.
After arriving at the hospital and realizing that this must be the only time of day with ample parking, we went straight away to check in. We waited a few minutes with some other people that were already there and then I got called in. I had to change into a hospital gown (open in back – lovely) and then a robe over top that closes in the front. The only other thing that I was allowed to keep on were my socks. Then I had to give all of my stuff in a bag to Mike to take care of. That made me feel so strangely sad. Just standing there in a stupid robe and my socks.
The nurse then got me into a bed and went about the usual stuff including blood work, temperature, blood pressure, etc…She explained that I was the first surgery of the day for Dr. Surgeon so everything should be on time and anyone else coming in afterwards would have to wait for me to be finished. She then went through the process with me and told me that I would be taken by the porter to see the anaesthesiologist and then on to the operating room.
Mike was able to go with me to just outside the doors to where the operating rooms are and then there was an assigned waiting room for him to go to so that the Dr. could find him after the surgery. The operation was expected to take about 5 hours in all and then I would have a couple of hours in the recovery room before going to my room in the hospital. Mike would get an update from the surgeon immediately following the operation and he would also be given my room number in the hospital. After the porter (who was so nice and very friendly and warm) brought us up as far as Mike was allowed, he gave us a few minutes alone together. I felt a big lump in my throat before Mike and I parted ways and we hugged really hard and the last thing we said to each other was how much we loved each other and I asked him to give the kids big hugs and kisses and tell them how much I loved them. I felt really scared all of a sudden. For some reason, and I never said it to him, I had in the back of my mind some of those stories you hear where a person goes in for routine surgery and by some fluke something goes wrong and they die on the operating table. That would really suck.
|St. Sauveur Summer 2011|
After we parted and the porter took me through the doors he parked me in the area where they would do the “block” with the anaesthesiologist. He wished me luck and left me parked there. I felt very much alone but since I was already pretty tired from the early morning, I ended up falling asleep and woke up to a masked face introducing herself to me as the Dr. that would be performing the block and participating in the surgery. There was a nurse assisting her and they explained the block procedure to me. It’s like an epidural when you have a baby except that it is high up on your back just below your neck. They also went through all of the risks but I pretty much tuned them out because they are nothing compared to the risks of not having this operation done. I’ll deal with whatever happens but I trusted that they knew what they were doing. Next they had me sit up on the edge of the bed so that they could mark on my back where the needles would go in.
The Dr. said that the medication would soon take effect and I would start to feel pretty darn good. Then she asked me if I was feeling good and where would I like to be? I chose a nice sunny beach with palm trees and the sound of the ocean. She asked if I preferred a pina coloda or a margarita and then all of a sudden I was feeling so good that it was sort of like I was floating. After that things kind of blurred. I know that I was then lying down again and being transported into the operation room. I remember looking up and seeing Dr. Surgeon and a bunch of other people that I didn’t know. They were moving in slow motion it seemed. Then the anaesthesiologist put the mask over my face and that was all she wrote.
I Wanna Be Sedated - The Ramones