Saturday, September 12, 2009

Surgery Time -- And the Living is Easy

So I have a body that apparently hates me. I'm always getting these weird aches and pains, and when I go to the doctor (which I always wait to do, as I'm not fond of their profession), they can never figure out what's up.

At the beginning of the year, I was having shooting pains up my left arm (no, it was NOT a heart attack). I've had problems with carpal tunnel in the past, and apparently it was time to go through it again. I would wake up in the middle of the night with my arm completely numb and tingling, and as it would "wake up," the pain would begin. As you can imagine, it was not a fun, sexy time.

Finally, I decided to have surgery. I was a little hesitant on it, as one of the doctors had shot me up with something and I didn't have the pain that I once did. But I was getting married soon (as in a month), so I wanted to get it done as soon as possible. My mom was gracious enough to come up and make sure I didn't die during surgery.

The Monday before my surgery, I woke up with a full-on stomachache. I felt a little bad about calling in sick to work, as I was taking the latter half of the week off for surgery, in addition to the next week. Hoping it was just a stomach flu, I kept a close eye on my temperature (which was a little raised) and drank lots of fluids and slept a lot. Monday night I took a cold bath in hopes of getting my temperature down. It helped a little and I thought I was on the mend.

Tuesday morning, I'm still feeling like shit, so I call in sick again. My mom was due to arrive that night, and I was hoping to kick this flu bug before Wednesday, otherwise I couldn't have the surgery. I spent the day doing the same thing: watching TV, falling asleep while watching TV, then waking up and downing gallons of OJ while watching TV. When my mom finally showed up, I thought I was doing pretty good. But then I got up to get ready to go to dinner, and my temperature shot right up and the pain got even worse.

So I listened to my mom and we went to the hospital. After SEVEN HOURS IN THE EMERGENCY ROOM and several tests later -- including a CAT scan -- the doctors finally figured out what was going on. It was not the flu. It was my appendix. Since I was having pain in a different place then where my appendix is supposed to be (I have malrotated intestines, which means that pretty much all my innards are not where they're supposed to be), the docs were a bit confused. Anyway, I had surgery that night, spent the night in the hospital, and went home to recover.

Two weeks later, I'm still feeling pretty crappy. The incisions hurts quite a bit, and watching me walk was like watching a glacier move. I took a lot of those fantastic pain pills they give you, but the night before I saw the doctor, I didn't. While at the doctor's office, my temp shot way up again (to 103) and the doctor told me I had an infection from the surgery and needed to stay the night. Well, that was the night of one of my bridal showers, so I wasn't too keen on that. I tried to talk him out of it, but he said no. I sent Jared in my place.

Actually, I'm glad I spent that night there. The pain was even more worse than it was before the surgery, so they shot me up with a ton of morphine and antibiotics. By morning, my infection was gone, and they didn't have to do another surgery to drain where the infection was.

So I went home, feeling a ton better. A few days later, on Friday, I drove to Pocatello for a library conference. On the way back, I managed to fall asleep at the wheel, and I flipped my car (by the way, this is a week before the wedding). Fortunately, I only had a small cut and a bruised ankle (which I'm still trying to figure out how that happened -- the bruised ankle, not the flipped car). And luckily, my sister-in-law Alisha was driving by at that time. She and her girls were going to visit my brother Josh in Utah, where he was working. They took care of me until Jared showed up (who I'm pretty sure didn't obey a single speed sign until he got to the crash site. He made it from Jerome to Burley, normal a 50 minute-ish trip in, I kid you not, like 20 minutes).

All throughout this experience, I just marvel at how much I'm blessed. How fortuitous I was that my mom was coming to Twin Falls when my appendix decided to go out on me. How lucky I was to have the antibiotics work on my infection so I didn't have to have another surgery. And how blessed I am to have a family and friends that will help me out no matter when I need them.

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