So, step one is done and dusted. I had my ‘initial look-see‘ yesterday. How did my specialist put it: ‘data collection’. Not only did my day start at stupid o’clock, but I arrived at the hospital only to find out I wasn’t even on the day’s list! Suffice it to say I was not amused considering I had to take a day off work (dire for a self-employed individual such as myself). However the staff were excellent and did manage to squeeze me in. After all, it was only to be a very short procedure anyway.
I – as always and very well known to regular hospital visitors – had to run the gauntlet with paperwork here, pre-op talks there and waiting, waiting, waiting. The one real positive out of all that is it makes you incredibly patient when it comes to dealing with hospital waiting times. I never walk through hospital doors without a good book or something to do.
I was lying on the gurney and had the usual string of thoughts running through my mind. Honestly, I sometimes wish it were still, that I was able to meditate so as to be in a position to actually hear myself not think! I was nervous. Not of being in hospital, not of the actual procedure or the going under and waking again. It was the possible risk factors that were made evident to me with the procedure prior to this one. Of incurring something that will disable me for a much longer time than I can afford – both organisationally and financially. And above all, emotionally.
And of course of things to come, immediately after the surgery and in the future. I of course am dying to find out what he saw, how it looked and what he did this time round. Unfortunately as I was squeezed in, it was not possible to speak to him directly after. I guess I will just have to wait now until my follow up appointment in two weeks time. Gives me plenty of time to think up questions to pester him with.
I don’t actually know what I would prefer: delaying it all as long as possible, or getting it done and over with sooner rather than later. A part of me is yearning to have as ‘normal a life’ as is possible post-op. The other wants to run and hide (and here we have the ostrich-syndrome again). I am not concerned about experiencing discomfort. It doesn’t actually hurt that much as far as I remember. Or maybe my brain just out-sourced that memory. And even so, there is good analgesic therapy to alleviate as much discomfort as possible. I am kind of weary of having to stay in hospital for over 2 weeks. I can already see myself clawing at the doors and windows, begging to be released from my little sterile prison, being allowed to participate in all the day-to-day things that I can see happening outside of my shared cell. But who knows I may actually have time to finish some needle work in the process – that I started some 10 years ago…
What frightens me, frightens the life out of me somewhat is waking up with that damn trach. Of breathing out of a little plastic tubing for at least 10 days. Of worrying whether or not it will clog up to an extent that I cannot breath sufficiently. The feeling of having the deep mucous aspirated. I remember when I had to have that done the last time around. I was actually able to stem away a strongly built male nurse just to get the aspiration tube out of me (I wish memory was more selective here and that I would not be recalling this so frequently as I am doing at the moment)
I also am afraid of my voice being more damaged than it already is. Not that I cannot cope on a daily basis. But, not having the ability to shout, sing, be in noisy environments… The thought of it is pretty damn daunting that it could worsen.
Despite success rate being high with this procedure I still have one more major concern: Will this work? Will this procedure lead to long term stability? A part of me thinks ‘why should it, all the other major operations failed’ I’m praying that, once arranged it will not lead me back to square one.