Friday, February 3, 2012

A Setback Part 2

I am finally getting to writing part 2 of the blog post about my perforated ulcer and surgery.  This will cover the rest of my time in the hospital.  You may wonder why it took me so long to actually write this post, but I had a lot of thinking I wanted to do first.  There are some things I would really like to address and was going to address in this post, but decided that this wasn't the right time for that part of the story, so I am just going to stick to the other aspects.

Thursday morning I was in and out of it.  I usually would be woken up by one of the ICU nurses coming in to check on me.  Chrissy showed up at 8 (because that was the earliest the nurses told her to come back).  I wasn't much for conversation since I wasn't really awake most of the time, but we managed to talk a bit each time I woke up.  I think around 10:00 was when my Mom showed up (having driven up from Florida and spending the night in North Carolina).  A few more hours later, my Father and Step-mother showed up as well.

I was very drugged up, very sore, and full of I-V lines for fluids and antibiotics. The nurse assigned to my room wasn't around much because her other patient was having a lot of issues, but they were still coming in to take care of me when needed.  The doctor's informed me that I would be moving up to a regular room by the end of the night.  The nurses were actually pleasantly surprised at one point because they needed to roll me over and didn't think I would be able to do that myself that soon after surgery.  That has become a trend with me after surgery though.  Being able to move much better than the nurses/doctors expect me to be able to.  That will come more into play later.

So, they move me up to a room in the new tower and were supposed to be hooking me up to a pain pump rather than coming in and giving me shots every few hours.  Due to the nurse in the ICU being too busy with her other patient, and a bit of a nurse turf-war, it was several miserable, painful hours before I got my pain pump.  After that was all hooked up, and they had removed my foley, I was able to get up and walk around a bit.  I walked a full lap of the floor that night and was doing a decent job of getting myself up/down in the bed (just needing help to reconnect the compression sleeves on my legs and plug my I-V machine back into the wall).

Friday comes along (even recounting this story, I am getting confused as to which day was which) and after everyone was back in the hospital visiting me, I was getting ready to get up and walk around the floor some more.  Unfortunately, just as I was getting ready to do that, someone showed up to take me down for a Chest X-Ray.  Well, so much for that walk...  Before I went down, Dad said that he and Cyndi had to get back to Florida and they were gone by the time I got back up from X-Ray.

I got back up to the room, hopped out of the wheelchair and moved back over to the bed.  At that point, someone from physical therapy showed up.  She immediately admitted that she wasn't sure why the doctors had asked her to come up since I looked like I was getting around fine (she saw me get out of the wheel chair) but offered her services anyway.  I said I was fine and she was on her way.  I managed to get a few good walks around the floor in during the rest of the day, but still didn't have an ETA for when I would be able to leave.  Friday night came and went with me still in the hospital.

Saturday rolls around and I am getting tired of typing ;)  The doctors decided they were going to release me because I was doing well.  They did try to give me a bunch of I-V Potassium right before I left though.  If you have never had that, well, it burns REALLY bad.  And they wanted to give me 4 bags of it!  Luckily, a bit into the second bag, they decided they were going to release me.  I rode home in Mom's van (because it would be easier to get in/out of then the Jetta) and went home to continue my recovery.  It is now the Friday after the surgery and had I actually been able to sleep last night (rather than pain keeping me awake) I would be at work today.  Alas, conditions still weren't correct for me to get back to the office, so here I am, at home, hopefully for the last weekday for this recovery.  I plan to be at work on Monday, although I will have to change around my schedule this coming week, because I won't be able to jump right back into doing the teaching activities I was supposed to do this coming week.  Having to teach is very stressful for me, and dealing with a stressful situation while recovering from a perforated ulcer is not the best thing.

Anyway, that is all on this subject.  At some point, I may come back and address the other items I mentioned in the first paragraph, but I haven't decided about that yet.

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