I made it!
Sorry for the lateness, everyone, but I. Am. Back!
So, went in for surgery on Wednesday morning. Got there at 8:30am like they told me to, and then I ended up waiting almost two hours before they even took me into the back. If I had known I’d be waiting that long, I would’ve brought a book or something, but ugh. Anyway. Got to my prep/recovery room, and they came in with the IV.
Yeah, I noped the fuck out again. I warned them, the doctor warned them, and the head anesthesiologist even had a note in there to sedate me first, but noooo. They didn’t want to do that. They ended up calling the doctor who would be overseeing my anesthesia, and he came in to talk to me. He said as long as I signed the paper saying that I understood that there was a higher risk with gas induction, they would do it my way. I had my hands out for the paper before he even finished talking. Obviously he couldn’t just let me grab and sign, he was a good doctor, but dammit I tried.
Anyway, apparently part of why they prefer starting the IV first is because some people freak out when they get to the OR. They see all the tools and stuff and get scared. I told them “I’m a writer, and this is -hopefully- the only time I will be in an operating room. I’m not going to freak out. If anything, you’re going to have to gas me just to get me to stop asking questions.”
They got a good laugh out of that, and then they wheeled me in. I tried to get them to speed up, but the one guy said he was too old to be running through the hospital, dammit.
Then it was go time. I just want to say this: I LOVED my anesthesiologists. I had asked them to wait until I was completely out before they started the IV. When they started the gas, I saw him step forward, and I put my hand up and said “Not yet.” around the mask thing.
Guys, he listened.
I was expecting to have to fight with them the whole time, but they worked with me. Seriously, if you ever find yourself having surgery at John Peter Smith in Fort Worth, Texas, and you’re nervous: ask for Dr. Davenport and Nurse Gwen. I don’t know if they only work with the eye surgeons or what, but they are amazing.
Obviously I don’t remember the surgery. I woke up because someone was telling me “time to wake up!” I do distinctly remember telling them “no.” They tried again, and I told them, again: “NO!” Then I started asking for Kristy (roommate/adopted sister). She came in, and got to witness me almost deck one of my doctors (in my defense: the doctor was prying open the eye they had just operated on, I mean…c’mon!). I got distracted from swinging at the doctor though, because when she pried open the eye, I realized I could see.
One of the risks of the surgery was the loss of vision, so I was distracted enough for her to finish
torturing examining me.
I made one of the nurses nervous, supposedly. I told them I wanted the lump they removed. I believe my exact words were “I want to put it in a jar in my room and name it ‘Fred’.” The nurse tried telling Kristy “Oh, that’s just the drugs talking.” But Kristy corrected her. “No, this is normal. If it were the drugs, she would’ve came up with a more creative name.” Kristy said the nurse gave her a weird look and left very soon afterwards. (On a side note, I meant to name it “George” like in the old cartoons. “I will hug it and squeeze it and love it all to pieces!” but “Squishy” was also in my list of names.)
Getting home from surgery was the worst part. Both of my eyes were swollen shut, so I couldn’t see anything. Plus, anytime I stood up, I was nauseous. So there was a lot of laying down going on there. My mom arrived around 7pm that night, and I’m not even going to lie, I cried like a baby. I really really did not like being blind.
My “bad” eye (the one I’m mostly blind in) finally opened really late that night/early the next morning, so that helped. My niece was amazing while I was recovering though. She brought me drinks, helped bring me food. Took care of our cat, and the dog. Just…all of it. She was very helpful, and I am very proud of her.
My other eye didn’t open for about three or four days, so my “bad eye” was pulling some major double duty. I ended up with headaches from eye strain and too much light. The doctors only prescribed Tylenol 3, one pill every four hours, but it was just not cutting it, so I called a nurse and asked if I could take two instead. She was worried I would run out too soon (and I did), but ugh. It was worth it. By the time I did run out, it was time to go back and have the stitches removed.
The only thing I will say about the stitches is that it SUCKED. It felt like she was cutting ME instead of the wires/threads.
Now, about the tumor:
I FINALLY found the name of it. It was a pleomorphic adenoma of the lacrimal gland. It can be dangerous, but usually only if 1. The whole thing is not removed, and 2. If the capsule around it breaks. Both of those can lead to the tumor becoming malignant and very aggressive. Dr. Itani was able to fully remove the tumor, and it was in one piece (no breakage of the capsule). So as far as we are aware of at this moment: the tumor was benign.
I still have to be monitored for regrowth, because that is where the real danger begins, but other than that, I am safe and in the clear. My next appointment isn’t until August.
Both of my eyes are open now (my left eye is still a little swollen and bruised, but it’s open), and I am celebrating. Wednesday is my niece’s birthday, so we’re going to go watch Wonder Woman, and tomorrow…tomorrow, I update Zombies!
…and do a crap load of homework. *sigh*