Monday, October 18, 2010

All my bags are packed; I'm ready to go.

My hospital bag is packed with two pairs of jammies, three pairs of socks, three pairs of underwear (why "pairs of underwear" when it's just one?), and ALL the technology.

Half of the Fearsome Foursome, my friends Ed and his Lovely Wife, came over with an iPod Touch with text-to-speech capability and something called a Boogie Board. The Boogie Board is like an electronic magic slate: you can write on it (or the cats can leave paw prints on it; it's surprisingly sensitive) and then press a button and have everything disappear.

The iPod is a nice thing. The preloaded voice is plummy and British and says things like, "If you ask me how I feel one more time, I will punch you in the balls."

The Other Jo sent me a Kindle. She's just as big a nerd--or maybe bigger, in different fields--as I am, so this was an incredibly thoughtful gift. I asked her why she didn't just provide me with a bleach kit for my works, as everything I've ever been meaning to get around to reading is provided free on Amazon for the Kindle. I have the distinct feeling that I'm going to end up reading stuff like "Northanger Abbey" on the Kindle when I ought to be working. Dammit, Jo!

I am leaving the Awesome Blankie of Win here, for two reasons: first, the boys would be very upset if I took away their new snuggle spot. Second, I want it here and MRSA-free when I come back, so I can lie on the couch in it and watch "Dirty Dancing" (the very first movie in my Netflix queue) the minute I get home.

And, finally, Brother In Beer came up this weekend and took me out for barbecue. It was lovely. We had no beer with our barbecue, but plenty of black eyed peas (almost as good as the ones he makes) and lots of laughing and kidding around.


It's been a good weekend. Except, you know, for when work called me today and BossMan asked if I wanted to work this week. "Dude," I said, "You know I'm going in for tests tomorrow and surgery on Wednesday, right?"

"Well," he replied, "I figured we could give you a couple hours off tomorrow for testing. We're kind of short-staffed."

I put this down to his general flitterygibbertness in the face of everybody getting pregnant and having CAN-SUHHHH.

Despite all the worries that go along with having general anesthesia and being intubated and having half your mouth cut away, I'm not scared. Strangely. Maybe it's because I know that codes in the OR are astoundingly rare, and that the residents in the room do everything they can to make sure you're still alive at the end of the case. Maybe it's because I know and trust everybody who'll be taking care of me. (Staying alone in a hospital room does sort of worry me, but Friend Pens the Lotion Slut assures me that she'll stay if need be.)

Maybe it's just that I'm so damned glad to get this monkey on the street, you know? The last several weeks have been a weird combination of rollercoaster and limbo. I can finally say that Yes, I Am A Patient, and I Am Doing Something About This, even if that Something involves lying supine on an operating table, getting gassed.

At the same time, I'm just as superstitious as any other nurse (and we're a superstitious lot). I worry about saying things like "easy" and "complete cure" and The Dreaded Q Word. If I write a see-you-in-a-while post for my blog (after six!!! years!), does that mean that The While will be Judgement Day? Am I, by talking about it, going to die on the table?

Fate and God and The Universe would not let me die without having appropriate last words. Of that I am sure. Therefore, I leave you with these words prior to surgery on Wednesday, secure in the knowledge that they won't be my last:

BIG. HAIRY. BUTTHOLES.

36 comments:

Cr0w$c@lling said...

All the Best!

Penny said...

BIG. HAIRY. *MONKEY*. BUTTHOLES!!!!

And Friend Pens WILL be in the room. Kick me if I snore.

Love you ALL THE THINGS.

'Drea said...

Everyone should have a Fearsome Foursome and I'm glad that you do.

I wanna say Godspeed even though I don't usually talk like that...

See you on the flip side.

Sunflower RN said...

Hi Jo,
I do hope everything goes as planned or better. Be nice to the nurses. I was a crap patient when I had surgery, so I do know of what I speak. I was going to sign myself out AMA until the Doc came by and I explained to him that someone was going to get hurt, either me or the nurses. He went away for a few minutes and I again made a plea to go home. "I'm a nurse, I can do this and my mum is here to make sure that I keep getting better". Dr agreed that I might just have a case. So I went home at 5:30 AM.

Anyway, good luck and God's speed.

spider said...

thinking of you.

JannieCPH said...

First the Beach Boys - Now John Denver ??? I never knew that a blog could make sure that a song is on your mind for an entire day .... Two days in a row. However, it has reminded me of you and there has been sendt a lot of prayers your way on that account.
Can't wait to read your next blog entry. Be safe Jo !!

Anonymous said...

Long time reader, first time commenter here ;). I'm amazed at how positive you're being about the Can-suh. I'm sure you have your down moments, but it has been my experience that folks with a positive and/or crazy attitude (no comment on which track you're taking lol) have an easier, faster recovery. Good luck, happy surgery day, and speedy recovery. Make sure you have some Monty Python in your queue.

-lpn(almost rn)mon

Anonymous said...

Mega-huge hugs headed your way. I will be thinking of you.

wayne said...

Best wishes from a long time reader, first time poster

Charlotte said...

Girl, you are in my prayers! You are going to come through this with flying colors! (Whatever that means but people say it all the time so, you know. How about rainbows? just not out of your butt. That might necessitate more surgery.) Love you!

Gretchen said...

Good luck, hope everything goes perfectly, and we'll all be waiting to hear how it went and how you feel.

KathyR said...

That was awesome.

Good luck.

Leslie said...

Hope it all goes as well as possible and you're home with pets, awesome blankie and netflix queue before you know it with as little pain as can be!

Rebekah said...

I am back to being POSITIVE that you will come through this in your wonderfully inimitable way. Pens - you have my phone number(s)...use 'em if you need 'em.

Prayers, thoughts, vibes, healing thoughts continuing.

Anonymous said...

I will be thinking of you. I am glad you have such good friends.

tm

Celeste said...

Big fat hugs comin' atcha from the north. I will be thinking of you tomorrow and waiting to hear from you. You've gone from being a funny link on a medblog post, to somebody whose worries I care about.

Absolutely brilliant to leave the blankie at home; I hope you're soon snuggled in it, heart swelling with pride that NOBODY puts Baby in a corner. ;o)))))

See you soon.

Anonymous said...

love you, Jo. see you in a while.

nurse8

Anonymous said...

I have lit three cats, all I have, for you. If this sounds a little true, be assured it is all metaphorical. A long time ago in another place and time I said I would light a cat'lic candle for someone or something. That got shortened to "light a cat" and I am telling you, these fat ones burn for quite a while.

But my cats hope you will get well soon so they can get put out soon, are getting pretty hot what with all the flames and stuff.

Hey, by the time you read this, t'will all be past.

Hugs from Nurse Quirky

Penny said...

I am not containing my laughter at the fact that the snotty old blue hair with the stick up her butt just found out that if she's going to look over the shoulder of people on their laptops at the airport, she just might see "BIG. HAIRY. BUTTHOLES," come up on the screen.

Anonymous said...

Wondering if the Big Hairy Buttholes were pre-selected or revealed themselves to you as you were writing? :) You'll be in my thoughts.

birdie23 said...

good luck and here's a big hug too!
know that lots of folks are pulling for ya. Naturally you should get good pain meds.

decemberbaby said...

delurking for the second time to say good luck to you and, to your surgeons: If you guys need luck, step away from the OR and let someone qualified do the job.

That is all.

shrimplate said...

I hope it doesn't hurt much.

Good luck, Jo. You're awesome!

Dr. Alice said...

Best of British luck, pip pip.
(Not that I'm British, but they're very good at stiff-upper-lip good wishes.)
Remember, there are people from all over the country - and the world - who are pulling for you. And we can't wait to read your posts when you get home.

messymimi said...

Lots of prayers.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

messymimi said...

Lots of prayers.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

TheSchaft said...

When I was in for surgery for a kidney stone - cost part of a rib, but got Dilaudid, so not all bad - a friend brought me a couple of wind-up ambulances. I let them go toward the nurse's station at about 0300.

Not suggesting anything, just saying.... :)

Anonymous said...

May every nurse caring for you be like you! Can't wait til you let us know how it went. Sooooo many people pulling for you....
love and hugs
Lori

Elsie said...

Wishing you all the best! Looking forward to reading your recovery diaries. Especially if you post while on pain meds ... that could be fun.

AM said...

Via con Dios, my friend. Looking forward to hearing from your irreverent self on the other side.

AM said...

Actually, that would be "vaya". I used to be able to spell.

LaLa said...

All the best luck and I hope they don't take as much as they thought they'd have to and you have a fantastically quick recovery.

Halie said...

You are the best Jo. There is no way we could keep up these charades without you. The world just won't allow it.

terri c said...

Lurker delurking to send every good wish I can find, in your general direction.

danielle said...

Gotta love hospital staffers....call people in to work when they are on maternity leave - medical leave - vacation...even heard of them calling people when they are on jury duty and bereavement - oops!

Prayers for you - and like someone said - that you get a nurse like you - meaning the best with the bestest/sickest humor!

IowaStudent said...

Thinking of you, and hoping surgery went well today.