I've been feeling pretty fantastic (well, comparatively) since my surgery. I know it has EVERYTHING to do with the amount of prayers that have been directed my way. The surgery part was much more of a breeze than I ever expected. I went in on the 13th and we did all of the regular pre-operative stuff... hung out for a bit with my parents and before I knew it I was up to be taken downstairs for my surgery. A kind of fun fact about operations that no one tells you is that they let you wear this crazy plug-in robe that blows you up like a hot air balloon. It looks like a regular hospital gown but then it has these holes in it that you plug a vacuum-looking thing into and it pumps the entire gown full of hot air. I felt like the balloon boy from TV!
Anyways so they wheeled me to a waiting area where I met all of my surgeons and anesthesiologists, the last of whom gave me something in my IV that he said was "a really expensive cocktail" that would make me feel like I'd had a few drinks, and that is the last thing I remember. That was the best part of the surgery- that I don't remember any of it. I woke up a few hours after my 2 hour operation and I was in the ICU for observation (routine). I don't remember the first little bit of waking up or who was in the room, but it felt like almost immediately I was wide awake and calling or texting people with updates on how I was doing. I remember having IV's everywhere and I had to wear one of those funny looking breathing tubes in my nose (the kind you wear at an oxygen bar) for the first night. I took it off that evening against doctor's orders but they realized that I was perfectly fine on my own and let me leave it off. I was also hooked up to a device that let me push a button and have Morphine drips whenever I "needed it," looking back I think I pushed that button more than was necessary but oh well!
The next few days consisted of visits from friends and family, slowly being removed from tubes, and moving my rooms around. I stayed in ICU for (I think) 2 days before they moved me to another observation area and then on my last day I finally had my own private room where nurses only came to check my stats and give me medicine. I had three decent-sized tubes injected into my upper abdomen for drainage from my surgery and lungs that had been deflated during the operation. Honestly I'd have to say that has been the biggest pain in the ass of any of the stuff post-op. Each tube was attached to a container much like a gas tank and until I had two of the three tubes removed I had to keep a catheter in because getting up to use the restroom was out of the question. Finally they took the catheter out on the third day and I had to have Kenneth carry the gas tank thingy to the bathroom with me any time I had to go. On the morning of the fourth day they took that last tube out and I can't tell you how relieved I was. I will say this: having tubes pulled out of your body is one of the most bizarre feelings EVER. It doesn't even hurt, it just feels like someone is pulling spaghetti out of your belly... totally surreal.
The last day or two was pretty mellow. We just sat around my hospital room playing Catchphrase and watching different Angel's games on TV. They finally released me on Saturday morning. My parents had taken their motor home to the hospital and slept in it the entire time, which was pretty cool because they were there the whole time but got to sleep right outside and kept comfortable. Great idea, Dad! Poor Kenneth was relieved to leave the hospital because he had been spending his nights either curled up in a big armchair or in a cot that was WAY too small for his 6'4" frame. Now that's dedication.
And so now I have been home for over a week, staying at my parents house. My recovery has been going amazingly well, as I mentioned before. No one can quite believe how speedy I have been as far as capacity to care for myself and move more freely. The day before I left the hospital I was even able to take a shower on my own, which is pretty crazy when you think about the train wreck my body had just been through. So far I haven't had many roadblocks... I can't carry anything heavy or reach all of the way up like I used to, but other than that I'm pretty good. Walking around goes alright as long as I don't go too long without taking a break since my lungs are not at their best quite yet. But I've even been out to eat and visit with friends which is pretty crazy since I just had my sternum cracked open 2 weeks ago.
My scar is healing okay. The bandages haven't fallen off yet, which my doctor assured me they will do eventually and until then I'm supposed to leave them be. I can see the top of the scar and it doesn't look too bad, still swollen though. I don't want to post any pictures until the bandages have come off because they're kind of yucky but once they do I will keep you posted.
I've been lucky enough to have my sister come out from Colorado for the past week to help me, which has been amazing. I have gotten so lazy this past few weeks it's disgusting. She was constantly asking me if I needed anything or wanted a glass of juice or whatever while she was up... I could get used to that! No but in all seriousness Jill is amazing and I am so lucky that she was willing to tote ALL three of her babies out here just to help out her sister for a few days. What a blessing to have such an awesome family!
I will most likely stay at my moms house for another week or so, just until I feel a bit more capable and closer to being able to drive again. I am supposed to lay off the driving for a month all together but I don't know if I can last that long. I am so independent I just hate relying on other people to drive me around like a child. Blech!
Anyways- I'm starting to get sore from sitting here for too long so I've got to go, but that's the update and I will keep you posted on anything new that comes up. Love you guys <3 div="">3>
Oh! And I owe updates on the results of the surgery as well. Not quite as we had expected but nothing tragic so I will let you know in my next post.