Tuesday 6th November 2012
|Getting ready to leave the house|
After feeling a bit freaked out the day before surgery I knew I would be in for a sleepless night. I decided not to stress myself out trying to force sleep so I just lay in bed reading blogs and twitter pretty much all night. I knew it wouldn't matter because I would be getting enforced rest while under the anaesthetic during surgery.
My alarm went off at 5.30 am and I was already wide awake so I got up and I showered, grabbed my last minute bits and pieces and then AJ drove me to the hospital. We sat in the waiting room for about half an hour while I chatted AJ's ear off about the US election that was currently being televised. I was no longer feeling nervous about surgery, just excited, but AJ was very quiet and seemed to be feeling a lot more uncomfortable than me... or else I completely misjudged his politics and he is a secret Romney fan and didn't appreciate my commentary...
|Feeling excited in the waiting room|
Next I was taken through to put on a surgery gown and answer the same questions about allergies and my date of birth over and over again to various nurses and doctors while they ticked boxes on forms. I was put on a bed and then not long after my surgeon came by with a big black texta and drew squiggly lines all over my body just like they do on Dr 90210. I was reassured to see that my surgeon also had a ruler and was quite precise in taking his measurements for the incisions. I was sure to let him know to be very liberal with the liposuction and that I would not miss any of my fat rolls!!!
In no time at all I was wheeled into the theatre and various people were buzzing around me hooking me up to machines. They strapped me into full leg cuffs that massaged my legs and kept them warm to prevent clotting and gave me that nice hot blanket you get before surgery. I really wanted to focus on enjoying the lovely woozy feeling you have as you are knocked out by the anaesthetic (I promise I am not a drug addict) but it all happened so quickly that the next thing I know I was waking up in recovery.
I think my anaesthetist was a bit of a magician because I woke up from a 6 hour surgery feeling completely alert and clear headed. I could hear someone snoring very loudly in a bed near me and the first thing I said to the nurse who was with me was "please don't tell me I snored like that when I was out". She assured me that I didn't make any weird sounds and then called the surgeon over to have a chat with me. I was excited to hear how surgery went and asked him immediately if "he made me skinny" and he seemed to think he had done a pretty good job.
After about half an hour in recovery I was wheeled into my own spacious private room with a nice view outside. I was so excited by this that I grilled the nurse to make sure that there was no chance I would be moved into a different room at any stage. She assured me that this room would be mine for the duration of my stay and I wanted to hug her. I was obviously still feeling chatty and excited because I asked her questions about everything that she was doing and when AJ arrived shortly after she inferred to him that I was a bit of a control freak, which was of course no surprise to AJ!
When I came out from surgery I had 4 drains coming out of me that suck up the excess fluid. I also had a catheter in because I was not able to move to go to the bathroom and an IV pumping fluid in to re-hydrate me. The nurses fussed with my drains and catheter a lot to try and make me more comfortable but they really need not have worried because they didn't bother me at all.
|Recovering after surgery|
I also came out of surgery wearing my (crotchless) compression garment which my surgeon instructed me to leave on 24/7 for the next few weeks. I had heard they are uncomfortably tight (worse than spanx), but I actually couldn't feel it too much because my skin is so bloated and numb. I am sure it will drive me insane by about the middle of summer though!
The best thing about coming out of surgery though was the awesome morphine pain pump they gave me (once again, I promise I am not a drug addict). Every time I felt the pain creeping back I just gave that baby a pump or two and I was back to happy land. It took away a lot of the pain, but it couldn't help with the discomfort of having to lay in bed, slightly propped up, and not be able to move at all. I couldn't even give myself a drink and had to have the nurses hold a glass with a straw to my mouth so I could sip. If I tried to reposition myself in any way I would feel like my body was tearing apart at the seams, so it was best to try not to move at all!
Next up my brother, sister-in-law and mum arrived to check up on me. Prior to surgery I had told them that I would probably be zonked out for visitors on the first day, but luckily I was fully alert and enjoyed having company. After an hour or so the nurse (not so subtly) hinted they should leave so I could get some rest. I didn't feel tired at all, but I am not one to argue with the nurses advice!
I had missed putting an order in for dinner, so the kitchen sent me a fresh chicken and avocado sandwich and a cranberry juice. I really didn't have any appetite but the nurses kept pushing me to eat something so I had a nibble. I have never eaten hospital food (or airplane food for that matter) in my life because just the look of it normally grosses me out, but this was more than just edible, it was quite yummy.
AJ hung around for a little bit longer, but I think he was way more worn out than me from all the worry of me having surgery, so I told him to go home and get some rest. I was still feeling quite good, mostly because of my little friend the morphine pain pump, so I watched some TV and chatted with the nurses as they came in every hour to check my temperature and blood pressure.
I didn't sleep much overnight. The morphine did help knock me out for short periods of time, but while the pain was manageable, it was still enough to keep me from sleeping very much. Despite this, I felt in good spirits all night and was feeling really happy that the surgery was a success and that the pain wasn't as bad as I thought it might be.
Day 2 to come...
Day 2 to come...