Overwhelmed, Tired, Angry, Scared, Frustrated and Certainly Not Caffeinated

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As a blogger, I often write posts that end up being tossed into the void known as the “draft folder”. Perhaps I wasn’t comfortable publishing the particular post at the time or maybe even felt that it was too personal . The last thing I want for JohnnyBGamer to become is a place for me to serve cheese and whine (even if it is potentially of a high quality). With that being said, below is a post I wrote sometime back in September. Back then, I was on the verge of having my gallbladder taken out. I think the title says it all.

Call me a baby but this stuff is too strong!

The world feels as if it is grinding to an abrupt stop and I am not holding onto anything in order to brace myself. I feel unsteady on my feet, vulnerable to damage. Financial pressures lap at my legs like a cold pond in October. Which for some reason reminds me of birds migrating south for the winter. Isn’t that how life is. One moment we are flying free, traveling forward, unaware of the hunter’s standing below ready to fire.

My thoughts are dripping out like my coffee maker sputtering its last molecules of java into the pot. It seems that my visit to the surgeon yesterday has done nothing to help me focus today. Not that I thought that the visit would bring about any sort of epiphany. I do know now that I will soon be parting with a friend I have had all my life; a friend who is no longer pulling his weight. My gallbladder has got to go.

Do you ever have one of those days where you feel like you stepped out the door at the wrong time? The skies suddenly opening up with a down pouring rain, destroying the hair and the clothing you spent so much time on. Certainly one of those days where it would have been better to just stay in bed. I kind of feel like that today.

We all have our ups and downs. Days where we feel that our lives have amounted to very little. In a way, on days like today, we, I, exchange the truth for a lie. We forget about all that we have accomplished and focus on the things we have yet to attain.

To think that I thought it prudent to excuse my morning cup of coffee this morning.

Recovery

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I have been sick for most of my life. As far back as I can remember, I have dealt with stomach issues. My parents have told me that I had problems digesting milk from the very beginning. Thankfully the wonders of the soy bean had been discovered long before my arrival. All of that to say that recently I become sick of being sick. So, at a friends suggestion, I sought out a gastroentrologist in an effort to delve into the secrets of my gut.

About the same time I was pursuing the gastroentrologist, I started to experience pain in my right and left sides. A sonogram and a HIDA scan later, my doctor concluded that I was having gallbladder problems. I then had an appointment with a surgeon who told me that I was a prime candidate for gallbladder removal. Woo hoo!

October 6th, I arrived at the hospital for check-in. I was nervous. After having lower back surgery earlier this year, memories of my pain and recovery were still too fresh. The last thing I wanted was to be put under again. The near-constant pain in my right side said otherwise, however. Prepping for surgery, I consistently had a sense of deja-vu.  I kept thinking that I recognized different nurses and orderlies. Thankfully all the pre-op stuff went well. Having the IV put in was no big deal. What was a big deal was seeing the needle for the blood thinning medication. The needle was huge! The nurse gave me the choice of having it inserted into my abdomen or my thigh. I quickly chose my thigh (leave my stomach alone!). With pre-op stuff completed, I was soon wheeled back into the pre-op holding area.

Back when I had my back surgery in January, the pre-op room I was in was for kids. By this I mean that there were prints of colorful animals all over the walls. I remember the wall decorations as being somewhat creepy and not soothing for an adult. This time though, I was placed in a normal white-walled holding room. My wife and I talked and I gave her permission to remarry in 20 years. I also told her that I wanted a 15 minute guitar solo at my funeral.

Being wheeled into surgery, my memory starts to get fuzzy here. The last thing I remember were the operating table lights. I was literally asleep in what had to be minutes. Praise God!

When I woke up, I noted that it was 1pm on the wall. My surgery had been at 10:45am. I had no clue how long I had been laying there. What I do remember though was the nurse telling me to stop moaning. She said that it wasn’t helping anything. Sure, tell a drugged person to knock it off. I fell asleep shortly after that.

Waking up, my wife was by my side. She would later tell me that I had not been too nice to the recovery nurse. Apparently I just wanted to be left alone. Who can blame me? By 4pm the doctor cleared me to go home. Thanks to the miracle of medicine, I don’t remember too much of the drive home or the rest of that day for that matter. Hmm.

Recovery has been slow but good. Nothing like my back surgery. Worst thing that has happened is some sort of allergic reaction that I’ve had. My incision points look like welts and I’ve developed a rash that itches like none other. I also have occasional pain and can’t eat too much. I think I’m actually losing weight. Which isn’t a bad thing.

12 days since surgery and I am going strong. I have even been able to eat yogurt, which is something I haven’t had in years. So yummy! So yeah, I’m back. Hope you didn’t miss me too much. I am hoping that this surgery marks the end of my surgical year. Anymore and I might as well become a doctor and operate on myself.

Surgery

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Sitting here at work watching the clock. In about an hour and 30 minutes I have an appointment with a surgeon. Hopefully a surgeon who has skills far greater than the ones I displayed playing Operation as a kid.

For most of my life, I have dealt with stomach issues. More recently, I have decided to get to the bottom of these issues and have since seen a gastroenterologist. After a bunch of fun tests, my doctor has concluded that my gallbladder is the problem. So today I am seeing a surgeon to see what can be done.

Part of me is nervous about having another surgery this year; the other part of me just wants the pain to go away in my stomach. Time seems to be slowing down as I get closer to going to this much anticipated appointment. I have to stop looking at the clock…

Update 9/30/11

My appointment went well. I will soon be parting with a not-so-valuable member of my body.