Archives For pre-op

The 26th of June.

Oh god it is too hot for existing. No gym this week – it’s hard enough to breathe doing normal activity in this heat, really don’t think exerting myself is wise.

This morning, I typed up a blog post, although I have just realised that I didn’t actually post it, so I’ll do that once I’ve finished this.

Daddy took me to The Spire for twelve, for my appointment with the lymphoedema nurse. She measured my arm for my sleeve, and apparently I will be wearing it for quite a bit longer than six to eight weeks. I will see her six weeks after the surgery, which is when all the swelling will have calmed down a bit.

On the way home, we went to Tesco to buy ice lollies. Ended up with Calippos, Mini Milks and Fruit Splits, so we have loads of choice. Calippos give me flashbacks to Ward 8 after my liver transplant, became I could gnaw on them and not throw up, because flavoured ice was one of the only things I could actually digest. Eating them now, in the sunshine, is highly preferable.

This afternoon, I have been making my extra hexagons. Three colours left to do.

The 27th of June.

Pre-op day! Had to be there at ten thirty, and Daddy had to go to work but thankfully Alison was able to take us. It was pretty straightforward – we went through my history, albeit briefly, because they don’t need to know everything, talked through what I’m having done, had some bloods done, blood pressure, urine sample. That was entertaining because they gave me a she-wee-like device to get the pee into the bottle. I’m not sure how helpful it was. I’ll need to pick up a prescription for some pre/post-op antibiotics, and I might have to go back the day before for a group and save if they think I might need blood. Unlikely.

This afternoon, I have finished all of the hexagons, for definite this time, and been vaguely aware of the Germany/South Korea match. I also had a somewhat infuriating chat with the mechanic who’s fixing Mommy’s car. I told him multiple times that I wasn’t her, but he refused to hear it and just kept talking so I had to pretend it was my car and tell him I’d get back to him about picking it up. Thankfully not long after that, Daddy got home so he went down there to deal with it. I now understand Mommy’s reaction to that guy.

The 21st of November.

Well I had a great start to my day, securing tickets for Sadie and I to go and see My Dad Wrote A Porno Live! Super excited for that, and we have great seats too.

I was at the chiro at 10:45, and that was surprisingly painful. The angry tendon that runs up the whole right side of my spine was very unhappy as soon as Trine touched it. Still, I am seeing Dr. Blaney tomorrow. Pray for steroid injections.

This afternoon, I planned to do a bit of looking at Christmas present ideas, but I got started on some crochet and just haven’t put it down. I’ve also been waiting for the pharmacist at Boots to ring, but they haven’t. They were supposed to be calling because my spare compression garments have arrived after waiting for two weeks, only to find the person on duty ordered the wrong thing. They have the code of the product but are apparently incompetent at using the information provided. Bad enough when the GP prescribes the wrong thing but when they have all the information and still fuck up…I don’t know. Gah.

The 22nd of November.

A slightly less productive day at hospital than I had hoped for, but that was more due to a misunderstanding on my part rather than anything that happened there. It emerged that the appointment with the anaesthetic team that had appeared on myhealth was not with the pain team, it was the one I had as part of the pre-assessment clinic. And having checked again, I don’t actually have another appointment booked in with Dr. Blaney, so we’ll be ringing his secretary tomorrow.

This did mean my visit was rather more straightforward. First I saw one nurse who did my height, weight and blood pressure. Then a sister called Kat, and we had to talk through my whole history, all my medications, what I’m allergic to, what I’m having done, and she gave me the pre-surgery checklist of things I have to do or not do in the hours preceding the procedure. I then went for bloods, but my veins didn’t want to cooperate, so I went to see the anaesthetist and drink a lot of water to pump up my veins. Had a very long conversation with him, mainly about my lung function, the pneumothorax and the pneumonia. He mentioned that my lung function is only 23% of what it ought to be, which was a surprise. I knew it was bad, but not that bad. Wow. Anyway, my lung function is not important because I’m having a regional block, which is like an epidural but it’s just one injection. I had to try to explain why I need to be examined in this situation but I’m not sure how much it made sense. That was all fine, so then I returned to the phlebotomist and she got some blood out of the side of my wrist. Then home!

 

The 17th of October. 

Today has been a pile of garbage. 

I’m still really achy, and was not thrilled at the prospect of sitting in my wheelchair much, but I didn’t think I’d be at the Women’s Hospital too long so it would be okay. How wrong I was. 

I arrived in colposcopy clinic at 11:15, but wasn’t seen until about 12, when Sue had come up and intervened (of her own volition; I didn’t even know she was coming). A nurse called me through, and we went to a room where I met Miss Byrom, and Sue and the two nurses were there too. We had a very brief chat about my problem, then it was jeans and pants off time. I put a gown on, and got into the very undignified position in the stirrups. On the ceiling were some pretty flowers, but I was far more interested in the screen with a big picture of my vagina on it. Miss Byrom attempted to insert a very small speculum, but it wouldn’t go in. There is some kind of obstruction, adhesion, like I had some sort of injury which has healed incorrectly. We have no idea what’s happened, but at least we have an explanation as to why I can’t be examined, and why I got nowhere with the dilators. So I’ll have to go back to be put under anaesthetic and my vagina will be “opened up”, to put it politely, and I’ll finally have a smear!

I then got taken to pre-op, where I waited for a good forty-five minutes before we even started. An auxiliary nurse did my height, weight and blood pressure, and I didn’t need an ECG because they have a recent one on file. Then back to the waiting room until a pre-op nurse could see me. 

I read some more of The Bone Clocks (I have made a great deal of progress in it today), and eventually a nurse came for me. We went to her room, and we had to go through all the usual questions. They had a lot of my information from my GA for the coil last year, so I gave her a potted version of my history, then made sure she had an up to date drugs list. She gave me several leaflets about GAs and preventing DVTs and PEs, then I took some blood forms off to the phlebotomist. That turned out to be the auxiliary nurse from before, poor woman, having to do multiple jobs. She said “That’s the NHS for you” and I said “That’s Jeremy Hunt for you”. Anyway. I finally got out at 3, and found Mommy in the car park who was very very bored and cold and hungry. 

Christine rang Mommy’s phone but we missed the call, then I rang her back to find that she’d tried to ring me but couldn’t get through, so we decided that when we got home, I’d back up my phone and tomorrow we’ll go to the Apple shop first thing. She’d actually phoned to complain about how the boiler people are a bunch of incompetent bastards and she won’t have any hot water until the end of the week, the second one of this saga. 

When we got home, we both ate lunch, then I went upstairs for an hour and a half to back up my phone. I couldn’t bear to sit for that long, so I lay on Christine’s bed with the electric blanket on to try to ease my back a little and listened to podcasts. It’s done now, and I’m looking forward to sleep. 

The 18th of October. 

Awake so early. Needed to be at the Apple shop for 9 to be able to see someone about my phone’s incoming call/text situation. I wasn’t first in the queue because being in the wheelchair, people walked past me into the shop while I had to wait for someone to activate the lift. Still, there were only a couple of people ahead of me, and the chap organising the Genius Bar said I’d be waiting about half an hour. He said I could leave and come back but there was no point, so Mommy went to Faculty to get me a coffee while I twiddled my thumbs. 

A guy came over about half past nine to hear about my issues, which I duly explained. He ran diagnostics and because of what I’d told him, he was happy to replace the phone once he’d checked it for any secret damage. That was all grand, except that they didn’t have any in stock, so I am awaiting an email to let me know one has been delivered. He has to say 10-14 days, but it’ll apparently be more like 5. 

Once finished my we went to Hotel Chocolat where I bought a Chocolate Yumpkin, and Boots for lip balm and some man tissues for Daddy before coming home. 

We had lunch and watched the new episode of Criminal Minds (so exciting I cannot explain), then Mommy ferried Grandma back and forth to Fellowship while I crocheted bits of the current project. 

The kittens were booked in for their first lot of jabs at 5, so we bundled them and Amy into the carriers to take them to the vet. It surprisingly easy to get them in, and there was no crying on the way. Lydon’s was full of dogs which I loved, but the cats were not so keen. I set the carriers facing each other so they were slightly comforted by that, and I crouched next to them. I took a lot of pictures of all the dogs but I didn’t pet any of them because I didn’t want the cats to smell them on me. 

When it was our turn, we started off with Amy, and she was good until it was time for the needle, at which point she spun round and hissed while the syringe was still in her neck. She was only too happy to go back in the carrier. All the kittens were really good; nobody hissed or scratched or bit, they were all just a bit wriggly. 

Back at home, I took a parcel that had been delivered to us next door, so I got to meet new neighbour Richard, who (it turns out) actually follows me on Twitter! He saw me in the Sutton Observer a while ago. Who knew we’d become neighbours? I also saw George again who was not poorly but he was a little bit grumpy because nursery had made him tired. I couldn’t stay long, because we had a lady coming to look at kittens and we needed to eat dinner before she arrived. 

I showed her Archie, Alfie and Angelica, as they’re the available ones. She really liked Alfie and Angelica  which is good because at least she’s got one who’s relatively confident. She asked all the right questions and I’m really happy with her as an adopter, so once the kittens are ready, she can have them!

The 3rd of August.

I feel drained. I don’t know why. I don’t think it can be anaemia any more – I’m just exhausted. I had a pre-op at the Women’s Hospital this morning for my coil insertion and hysteroscopy at the end of the month. Two hours sitting with a nurse who knows nothing about my complex diseases (not that I expected her to – she does gynae) but going through everything that’s happened in the past eight years, explaining all my drugs and why I’m on them, what I’m allergic to, what happens if I have those things. And she just kept telling me how terrible my life has been, how much I’ve “been through it”. I know this. I’m aware that my life is a pile of shit, I don’t need reminding. When I’d finished talking, I had to have bloods done and an ECG which didn’t take long at all. 

We had to take the duvet cover back to M&S and pick up a jacket on the way home, and I was planning on going to the gym this afternoon, but I just didn’t have the energy. Instead, I wrote up the past two days and watched the final Humans while Mommy was at Grandma’s. 

I just need a big sleep. 

The 4th of August. 

I am officially without plumbing!

We went out late morning to be on 621 for my line removal at 11:30. However, the man before me had been late, so I managed to read the entirety of The Secret Library by Haruki Murakami (admittedly, it’s not long) and I’d started on the paper by the time they came to get me. 

It was the first time I’ve been able to watch my line come out. It was done by a doctor called Becky who I assume has replaced Igor, and she was perfectly competent. First she put in some local, which only stings for a moment, then it’s numb and she made a small cut. Two clamps were used to hold the incision open, and then the line had to be detached from the flesh it had embedded itself in. It just involves a fair bit of digging, and I had to have a tiny bit more anaesthetic a bit deeper. Once it was all free, the removal was very quick. A couple of stitches, a dressing and I was on my way!

This afternoon I’ve just been resting, and I wrote a blog post about why #IGiveASpit for Anthony Nolan’s newest campaign. Getting people to register for stem cell and organ donation is my only purpose in life, and I want to help in any way I can.