Quick, guess how I’ve spent the days I’ve been home so far.
You win, well, nothing. But thanks for playing!
The Giant Recliner and I have been spending a lot of quality time together. If I get everything arranged just right nothing hurts, even the butt-cheek drain. Unfortunately I can’t reliably replicate the combination of body and chair position that produces this effect.
I can’t quite remember what I’ve said here. And whatever it was, it probably wasn’t coherent because of the drugs anyway.
So, to recap…
I left behind:
One chunk of colon, consisting of clean tissue on both sides of the Primordial Wurst.
One chunk of the right lobe of my liver, consisting of clean tissue surrounding the Wurst.
Assorted lymph nodes, none of which showed any traces of cancer.
Assorted surgeons told me afterwards how lovely and healthy and wonderful my bowels were. (No really. My surgeon described me as “as beautiful on the inside as out”, the resident who sat in said something similar, and so on. Surgeons are a bit odd.)
I have acquired:
One incision, once possessed of 80 staples, but now plastered in steristrips. Well-healed, doesn’t much hurt but I wouldn’t lift anything heavy (and have of course been ordered not to anyway).
Three drains, of various sorts. One original surgical drain (is it going to hurt to get it out?), and two added by Interventional Radiology to combat the evil infection. These hurt, especially the one in my butt cheek that I have to sit on. I want them out as soon as possible. The others come out of my left side and my right side, so there’s no lying on my side option that’s any good either. I have a GP appointment tomorrow, but I’m not sure if a GP will want to pull drains from some other surgeon. Here’s hoping.
One ostomy, presumed temporary (a few months). (Also described as “beautiful” by various people. My surgeon did a good job, apparently.) This is a bit of an adjustment, but not as bad as I thought it might be. I’m not particularly squeamish, which helps, but it’s really not that bad. I managed to change the whole apparatus this morning, with only a minor mess. There’s a team of ostomy nurses who are utterly determined to make sure that you know how to do everything necessary before you go home, and they’re very good at their jobs. (I did flummox one when I referred to myself as a “fistulated cow” though. She said nobody had ever used that description before.)
Fistfuls of drug bottles: Antibiotic, other antibiotic, various things to help with the care and feeding of ostomies, and of course the all-important pain meds. I’m actually only taking them at night right now (though I seriously considered one mid-afternoon, because these drains are driving me nuts). They provide sleep and lack of pain: very nice. But I can’t drive until I’ve been off them for a week, so I have a great incentive to quit.
I’m not going to count the infection in the “acquired” column, because I’m hoping that I both acquired it and left it behind. Besides the antibiotics, I have no fever or other worrisome signs, so this one can just cancel itself out.
I walked outside today to look at the garden beds. That pretty much used up my endurance. This is going to be a long, slow recovery, and I’m going to hate every minute of it. (Also Boost. I hate Boost. And various other things, but especially the butt drain.) I expect to be cranky a lot, when my vision of what I should be able to do doesn’t match the reality. I’m trying very hard to be a good patient, and eat as much as I can, exercise some but not too much, sleep a lot, yadda yadda yadda.
I sorted through all the mail today, finally. Thank you for the wonderful cards! I appreciate it immensely, and it helps with the cranky.