I suppose I must have had all the stars aligned after complaining so much that everyone I know was beseeching, "For the love that all that is holy, let this woman's gallbladder be gone!!" The last I wrote, I was poised to go in, guns blazing, to convince a doctor that I needed this darned thing OUT of me...preferably before I left the office, but that was negotiable. When the doctor finally arrived (from an emergency gallbladder surgery, nonetheless) at my appointment, it was like he was trying to convince ME it was time for it to come out soon.
Maybe people do that? Writhe in pain, know exactly what's wrong with them and then go to a surgeon after speaking to no one, googling anything, etc. only to learn the ONLY thing to do to avoid an emergency situation in the future is to have the gallbladder removed. I was not really looking for a suggestion on what to do--I was ready for him to cut me open at that moment (or supervise me doing it) to remove the offending organ immediately. Once he realized we were on the same page and his "informed consent" discussion was not going to scare me away, he told me he'd send in his scheduler and he could probably have me on the schedule "soon."
I quickly realized it would be the SCHEDULER I would need to potentially sweet talk. She came in and said, "So, you're ready to schedule a surgery? Now. I know this is soon, but I actually had a surgery block cancel for tomorrow and..."
"I WILL TAKE IT!! SIGN ME UP!! I WILL BE HERE!!"
She was taken a bit aback. I mean, seriously people, have I NOT made it perfectly clear that I am IN PAIN and I am tired of it. I am down over 10 pounds and while that is a pleasant side effect of this, I know it isn't good for me because I will likely just gain it back anyhow once I can eat again.
I was put on the schedule and reported to the hospital at 7:45 a.m. My blood pressure each time it was checked was ridiculously wonky. I don't think it helped that until after I went to surgery, we had to have M3 with us. Her fidgeting, hypervigilant startling and her incessant need to stare at people (like the WWII vet across the way) drives me absolutely nuts. SHE makes my blood pressure wonky outside any other thing like pain or otherwise. My blood pressure was more normal immediately following surgery and I'm really hoping that continues to be the case. I will be thoroughly pissed if the last couple years of my life, plus a badly dealt hand of genetics land me in blood pressure jail. I have less than zero interest in that.
I didn't become nervous about the surgery until right before they took me back. A nicely timed dose of a sedative (probably Versed) followed by the drug that killed the King of Pop did the job and I don't remember a thing--including the tube down my throat which I didn't know would be required until that day. It was weird because even in the recovery room, I could TELL the gallbladder was gone. The sensation of something sitting in my side was gone. Even though things were kind of painful and touchy, THAT particular pain/sensation was completely and totally gone. The doctor told my husband that by the condition of the gallbladder, he could tell I had been in pain a LONG time. Really? Huh. Shocking.
My mom came down and helped us through the opening days which was awesome. She is so good with the girls and can keep M3 in check for the most part. After a couple days, M3 gets the best of anyone who tries to be helpful to other people or engage M3 in tasks, etc. I'm sure by the time Mom left she was glad to have some M3-free time.
The first day home was rough. I was so tired and I thought I would sleep. I became a little wound when I arrived home, though, because there were things my husband needed me to do for some reason (pay bills online, line up rides for the girls, etc) and it ramped me right up. Even with regularly dosed Vicodin, I only dosed for a few minutes at a time until 3 a.m. the following morning when he left for work. Then, I was OUT. At 7:30, a little friend of M2's who we had been watching in the morning for a few hours that week, arrived and rang the doorbell. No one answered it the first 5 times. It finally jarred me from sleep and I realized in rapid succession: 1) doorbell; 2) M2's friend; 3) answer it! and I leapt from bed. The next rapid succession of realization? 1) Why am I covered in pillows? 2) OWWWWWW! 3) Why am I crumbling to my knees? 4) Who sliced my guts open?! Oh, that's right--I HAD SURGERY 24 HOURS AGO.
Yeah. That was interesting.
I was able to sleep in some bigger chunks and only had one rough patch where I think I was simply dehydrated--I had slept too long Thursday afternoon/evening and wound up with a headache and feeling nauseated. By Friday night, I was able to be up and in charge when my husband went to his evening shift. Saturday, I was up all day and even ventured to CVS. Today, I was up all day and took M2 to a goodbye party for her little friend who is moving to Arizona, took M2 to a nice dinner and then played in the backyard with her while we tried out our new fire ring. It was a nice night.
I'm not going to lie. I know that I enjoyed being out of the loop and away from caring for M3 entirely too much. It was WONDERFUL to sit in quiet. To read an entire book on my Kindle. To not have that ghostly presence anywhere around. To be able to hold a conversation without her eavesdropping. It was just nice. No other word for it. I am looking forward to feeling that way all the time. I know that I was relaxed. My blood pressure didn't feel wonky. And, the closer I got to the time I had to descend the stairs and rejoin the fray, the more agitated and worked up my insides became. That isn't good.
I'm returning to my job tomorrow. We run a first day simulation for our bar exam takers. M1 is with her dad's family because her new baby sister was born Monday--the same day M2 celebrated her birthday! Two sisters on the same birthday...very fun. That means if I want to be there before the exam commences, I need to take M2 and 3 with me in the morning because my husband will never be home early enough for me to be there on time. I hate that. M2 could be a help and be silent. M3 will be a conspicuous mess. I don't know what is worse--leave my boss with a hole in her line-up for an hour (she told me to take my time and only arrive when I feel able b/c she doesn't want me rushing my recovery, but I'M ready...my home life isn't, but what else is new?!) or take M3. I am sure the answer is taking M3. It will be much more trouble than it is worth--it always is.