A bit on the verge of madness, so let’s embrace it, shall we?
About a year ago I joined the appendicitis statistics, got in a hospital and a strange doctor had it skillfully and quickly removed. I’m pretty sure I’d never been so scared before. I think I’d watched “Awake” way too much.
I got lucky. No yelping in pain like they do in the movies. Just a very troubled month distributed with the symptoms – I’d never before been to the hospital and that month I went three times. On the third, sharp pain came and went and we ran to the hospital. The tests were pretty annoying and no-one knew how/felt like explaining me what they were – don’t you feel safer when someone takes a minute to try to explain just why the thing she’s injecting in your catheter will make you feel warm, but it’s okay?
But the thing that bugged me more than the actual surgery was how everyone was so damn light about it. Not my parents – no, they were worse than me. But the two guys who persistently poked my belly with the ultrasound thingie (which HURT, btw)? When Mom asked him for good news, he beamed “Oh, we can’t see too clearly, but we’re guessing it’s only the appendix.” Oh, just that? (You’re guessing???) Meaning there’s an easy way out of it? “Going under the knife.” With a smile. Yes. A smile. First time I wanted to tell someone to effe himself that day. Plus, I had mostly really nice nurses (I stayed overnight before and after the surgery, so I had a lot of different nurses), but they kept saying “You’re only taking an organ you don’t even use! Relax” and then I asked them if they had done it, “Oh no, I’ve never had any surgery” – not really helpful then, eh?
Mom says she was called to meet the surgeon afterwards (so he could say it all went well, though no-one cared to hint that) and his first words were “Your daughter is a very nervous girl”. Because I was really really nervous. There might have been tears involved. But do forgive me for not being entirely trusting of a doctor I’d just met (literally just shook hands with), appointed by another doctor who I only knew by name because her mother is friends with my mother, and whose only reassuring remarks to me were “You’ll like him. He’s tall, handsome and blond”. SERIOUSLY? That was supposed to make me feel confident about his cutting skills? Have you MET a non-fictional 18-year-old?
Plus, they were discussing football. I was being rolled in the O.R. and they were discussing football. I know I’ve watched several medical shows where they are all discussing something else while cutting away (Grey’s Anatomy is particularly scary), but come on! The only person who made eye contact in scary, cold, super-lighted room was the anesthesiologist. He was nice. And I’m guessing pretty good, since next thing I remember was staring at the ceiling of a different room. Never felt so much relief or confusion in my life. It was over. It worked! All was well. I had to check my bandages to be sure it had really happened. Kind of freaky.
Also, you know how you’re constantly aware of the stuff that’s happening with your body? Like your feet are cold, or something? I felt nothing while still groggy. Actually, I felt perfect. Which was both awesome and entirely mistaken since at that moment I had IVs and stitches and some other stuff which I still don’t know about on me. But it was good, my first visitor, my Uncle, seemed calmer with my happy self and spread the word to the family. Then evil nurses gave me evil – real – food which I promptly threw up and felt sick the rest of the day. Blessed be Layla, the nurse who was nice enough to wash my hair afterwards.
Next morning, before reluctantly discharging me, Blond Doctor came to my room and told me – in a not very pleasant tone – that I had to eat or he wouldn’t let me go home. Oh, also that I should be walking just fine right now. “Effe You” number two – I still regret not voicing it, maybe that’d have been a push for him to become a less detestable person. And then Bitchy Nurse made sure to tell him “She’s scared of doing anything, she’s scared of washing it with soap and getting it wet and blablabla”. I HAD ASKED HER ABOUT IT ‘CAUSE NO-ONE BOTHERED TO TELL ME ANYTHING. And, you know, my previous surgical experience was, er, ZERO. “Effe You” #3.
Instead of giving in to the cursing, I ate my cookies with what I think was a pretty good evil stare at both of them. He left instructions that I should walk out of there (ever tried to stand up from that flat hospital bed without using your stomach? Turns out you use it a lot and don’t even notice). And then Lovely Nurse noticed I hadn’t eaten much and was kind of too tall/heavy to be supported by her tiny person and brought in a wheel chair. I love her. We came back with cookies for her.
At home, getting up as slowly and grabby of the sofa arms as I wanted, I was muuch happier.
Anyway, thankfully all went well and after two days at home I felt okay enough to attend some of my classes. By the following week all was back to normal, stitches aside. The only recommendation was to avoid stairs. Blond Doctor went to the same university I go to – does he even remember it? All bathrooms are up or down some stairs, it’s unbelievable. As are libraries. Oh, and did I mention most of the classrooms we use are arena-like? But never mind that.
I don’t know why I decided to start babbling away about this. Maybe because every so often I still practice my evil stare just for Blonde Doctor. Maybe because I’m finding out being the non-hospitalized person isn’t better the hospitalized one.