Inch By Inch

About me, my family, and my gastric bypass surgery

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

It's over

Approximately 3 hours later, and surgery is finally over. I was in the recovery room waking up thinking, oh no why am I here, is it done, did they do it? I put my hand on my belly, and could feel the bandages. I was relieved. Surgery was done, and I was ok. I fell back to sleep. It is horrible to come out of the anesthesia. Wake up for a minute, sleep for fifteen, wake up again. I was really cold, I had a ton of blankets on, but I still felt cold. The nurses were wonderful. Finally I went to my room.

I had asked for a private, I'm not so good about staying with strange people. No one was there. Not my mom, or my husband, none of my family. I was scared. They wouldn't have left, where did they go. I asked where they were, and the nurse said they were still in the waiting room and she would let them know I was here. Yeah, finally they came to find me, balloons, flowers and stuffed animals(I'm 23, but I still love stuffed animals) in tow. Then it set in...I was sore and thirsty. Nothing by mouth until the next day at lunch. I had already not had anything since last night at dinner, and that was jello!

Everyone who came in I asked for a drink, but no luck. Nothing except some little swabby things that you dunk in water and then rub in your mouth. What good does that do? I was having a very hard time with one of my incisions. It was draining quite a bit, which freaked me out. Each time I moved, it seemed like I needed a new bandage. My nurse was excellent, but then again so was the morphine. The nurse was pregnant. She was so sweet. She told me not to get out of bed and go for a walk tonight, but to do it in the morning because of all the draining. Yeah, a break.

Dr. O'malley came in and told me to go for a walk. What? Did he not know what I was going through. I couldn't even sit up without a new bandage. I tried to tell him, but he said it needed to drain, and it would stop eventually. Ok, fine buddy, I'll go for my stupid walk. I got up to go, but I really was draining a lot, the nurse came in and gave me a towel to hold over my incision so I wouldn't leave a trail. Darren and I walked down the hall and back. It was horrible, I was beat. I went into the bathroom, and then to bed. What did I do to myself?

My family left at 9, when visiting hours were over. It was an hour drive for them to get home. I didn't sleep so good that night. I had a lot of shoulder and back pain, which they tell me is quite normal. It all had to do with the gas they use to blow up your belly. A nurse came in to take my vitals, and what not. I asked her if I would get weighed today but she said no. She was able to give me my official pre-surgery weight...347. Wow, how does that happen. I remember being 199, thinking "oh, God, I don't want to be 200lbs," and that was a very long time ago. I never got weighed again in the hospital. Funny, I thought I would.

That first morning I woke up there my hand really hurt where the IV was. A called the nurse, and she came in and said she would take it out. I don't know what happened, but my hand was all puffy, and really sore. Out it came. She tried once to put in another one but it didn't work. Now a second lady came in to try. She tried twice. A third lady tried...3 times. Finally they said they would wait until 9 when "Dave came in." This was only 6 in the morning. I was crying so hard. My arms were already turning black and blue. I called my mom, who I love, but she just isn't so good when you wake her up. She said something pretty unintelligible, and I let it go. I called my aunt. She felt bad for me, which is all I wanted. Then I called my boss, at work to leave her a voice message. Her sister works at that hospital, and it just so happens IV's are her job. That's what she does all day...or something a little more indepth...but basically.

8:30 or so this lady walks in, she introduces herself, and says she gonna start my IV. I pull away and politely say, "no thanks, I'm waiting for Dave." She tells me they sent her in and she's just as good as Dave. Great, here we go with more poking. Wow, first poke and she's in, Hooray! She finished up and left. 9:10 or so in walks a man, I assume he's "Dave" and say hi. He tells me he got a call from Michelle(boss's sister) and she asked him to check on me. Wasn't that nice. He checks my arms, asks if I'm all set, and says Michelle will be up at 2. How sweet.

The rest of the day is pretty uneventful. My family visited, and Michelle stopped in, but other than that. Lunch was horrible, broth and more Jello. Oh well, I could have a glass of water or a glass of juice mixed half and half with water. That was great! I didn't mind the taste, and it was so nice to have a drink. All day Darren and I went up and down the halls. They left that night at 8:30, right after Dr. O'malley came in. He said I could go home the next morning, and for them to be there by 10. Released by 10, I'd be home by noon. Yippee!

Mom and Darren came to get me the next morning in a snow storm. I was worried they wouldn't make it. They said the ride in was awful. We left and got home about 12:30. Darren and I planned to stay with my mom, it was easier. I needed help with our son, Tyler, and Darren worked nights. I got to sit in the recliner, and not move. It was nice. Tyler seemed glad I was home. He's only 16 months, but he seemed to understand not to be rough with me. I was glad to be with my family, but I was so tired.

The next week went ok. We stayed with mom until Monday night. I only had one really bad day that I was hungry and really upset about my decision to have this surgery. Darren and I worked through it, he was great. Our first appointment was on 1/14, I was nervous and excited. I didn't think I had lost a lot of weight, which made me nervous, wasn't I supposed to loose weight quickly. We'll see.

Mom and I went to the appointment that afternoon. In the waiting room I met a lady who would be having her surgery on 2/2. She was excited. She asked if I had had surgery, and I told her I had it a week ago. She was amazed at how well I looked. I had jeans and a sweater on. I didn't look like I just had surgery. I could get around ok, and I felt good. Then they called my name. Back to the scale. I was so nervous...318! 29 pounds, I couldn't believe it. The rest of the appointment was a blur. The Physicians Assistant gave me a new diet, which to my delight included mashed potatoes, tuna fish, and cottage cheese among other things. I asked a couple of questions, had my staples out, and I was done.

When I told my mom I lost 29lbs., she hugged me. My family was all very happy for me, as well as a few close friends I had told. I was happy for me too.


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