Posts Tagged ‘surgery’

Familiarity breeds… Boredom? Anxiety? Disdain? How about night terrors?

Saturday, April 16th, 2011

A shadowy figure broke into my house, into my room, into my dreams. In that way dreams have of telling us what’s going on I knew he was a burglar but he didn’t seem interested in burgling anything. All he did was cut me. Over and over he cut me: slices to my ears, stabs on my face, cuts to my arms and hands… painful small cuts, the kind that, added up to 10,000, cause death. Oh, those cuts. They hurt. I screamed.

The scream woke me up. I shuddered, shook my head at the horror of the nightmare and fell back into sleep – and  back into the dream.

The cutting man was still there. Not a gloater, he was nothing like Hollywood Evil. Just a man with a grim task to do. His knife looked like a scalpel, blood ran from my cuts. Why was he doing this? Why didn’t I fight back? If he was the thief the dream insisted he was, why didn’t he just take something and go? (more…)

Medical system FAIL

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

This happened yesterday. The only info you need to make sense of it are a) I was in the hospital for a few days about two weeks ago due to high fevers following an endoscopy (a look down the throat), and b) when they were looking, the docs saw something that concerned them,  declaring it Must Be Removed. I agreed. Now if only I could get it done…

Rather than polish it up and risk losing the, er, spontaneity, here’s the eMail I wrote to my friends.

Went to ENT (Ear/Nose/Throat) clinic today to get the thingy in my throat removed. The following happened:

1. Doc saw me, said situation is exactly what the docs in the hospital had said two weeks ago: growth on pharynx, probably papilloma, needs to come out. Said he’ll do an excisional (right word?) biopsy removing the whole thing (unless it extends into my brain or some other inconvenient spot). I said hooray for that! (more…)

Three Scenes from a surgery

Thursday, January 8th, 2009

I’m being silly. No, that’s too kind: I’m being stupid. I desperately want to write, want to update this blog and take it to new places because I’m sick and tired of thinking – and writing – about being sick and tired (and maybe I don’t have to for a while!) and I want to work on my plays again and write the essays kicking around my brain and I’ve got this idea for a novel and…

But I don’t.

What I have been doing is everything I can to avoid writing. Photographing. Having an operation (again). Reading. Walking the dog. Recovering from said operation. And… uh… did I say photographing? It’s all just surgery-excused writer’s block.

Oh, my new photography obsession is a fabulous mania. I’m having a blast learning all manner of photo techniques, how to visualize the shot, taking classes and reading books on the subject. And of course snapping pics, hundreds, anywhere and everything, to the bored distraction of my friends, family, and dog. Somehow all the trauma and medications of the last three years left the visual parts of my brain functioning better – certainly more willingly – than the language parts. But photography isn’t writing. I need to write.

Well, the surgery excuse is now officially old. The operation succeeded – mostly – I’ve recovered – mostly – the dreaded bubble‘s gone – mostly – and I even made it to the gym this week – mostly. Time to put fingers to the keyboard. Before I shoot at the other writing goals though, I need to exorcise the health stuff.

So here, as a sort of mopping-up exercise, are three scenes from a surgery, which took place November 5th.

1. Nooo! I don’ neeed a kidneeee!     

In which the joys of pain meds reveal their dark side.

2. “Do you know why you’re still here, Mr. B?”

In which I learn you can wander the halls too long.

3. Terror.

Yes… well… there’s no other word with quite the impact of “terror” these days, is there? Yet I have to use it: all the synonyms I can find really just tell a part of the whole… totality we call terror. This post will be along shortly. Nailing down what I’m trying to say isn’t easy.

There. Medical demons exercised with the exception of #3. When it is done, I get to move on. Next posts, already in the boiler, will be on hypnotherapy and surgery, and just how much is a cure worth? Stay tuned.

Scene 2: "Do you know why you're still here, Mr. B?"

Tuesday, January 6th, 2009

I am now apparently  allergic to all pain meds no matter how they’re delivered. IV or pill, even the patch so beloved by many, every last one of them makes me puke. Lovely!. Not. Some people regurgitate like cats: casually, out of boredom, with no consequences. Not me: even thinking about it is a misery. So you can see how happy I was to spend my first conscious post-surgery hours desperately trying not to throw up and failing. 

The weird thing was, I had no pain. Nada. Just the usual post-op stiffness that comes from being artificially dead for a few hours. It wasn’t a difficult op and all the nerves in the area had been killed off during previous ops, so my body didn’t take too much of a hit. And I’d been training for this. No, really, I trained for surgery: at the gym, hiking with the dog, yoga, even hypnotherapy. Anything to get my body and mind in as strong a state as I could so I’d make it through this. After my last time getting chopped, I left no option that might aid survuval unexplored. And it worked. Something did, anyway. (more…)

Every time I start a post…

Saturday, September 13th, 2008

…Bang! I slam into another concrete wall pretending to be a speed bump.

  Twilight, Shelter Cove, CA

In January after surgery took me down, I was miserable enough to ask myself – for the first time ever – the big question: Should I stay or should I go? Just hang it up and dance down the tunnel of light? And for the first time, I was indifferent to the answer. But as I recovered my stubbornness kicked in – late, but much to my relief – and so here I am.

Five months later I found myself trying to cope with a bout of confidence of all things, struggling to really believe I’d regained something of a semi-functional life for the first time in two years. I even got to take a road trip. Then I was knocked flat by a simple endoscopy (tubes and cameras down the throat for a veinal lookie-loo) which re-triggered my ever-hovering hepatitis C and left me on the couch panting and deranged for two weeks.

  King's Range, CA

Recovering from that would-be-funny-if-it-didn’t-suck experience, I’ve spent the last month plus agonizing over whether to have yet more surgery to fix the ever-enlarging bubble on my abdomen, the result of last winter’s hernia repair that didn’t go so well. The bubble’s spawning now, with two tiny new bubbles popping up. I swear Alien’s in there doing something evil. (The surgery decision: No! NO! NO KNIVES! Not ’til I have to! [Which may be sooner than I’m telling everybody.])

And through all this, my new liver, which had actually taken to behaving itself, decided to do some sulking again. And so now I’m back in this gray area where some things work, sort of, other things not so much, not knowing day to day what it’ll be like and wondering just what the $#^% “health” is, anyway?

I suppose the biggest epiphany I’ve had from all this is something I already knew: There’s this line running through my life. Stay on one side of it, and the deities smile benignly and permit me to muddle along. Cross that line, and bang! (there’s that ‘bang’ again) those same gods set the hounds from Dante’s circles on me. This line is as thin as a new-bought razor blade.

  Otto taking a beach nap

Anyway, I’ve decided to post the various fragments I’ve been working on, plus a few off-topic bits (a poem, anyone?) just so I can make some sort of break with the last six months – writing-wise, anyway – and start anew. Consider these posts – they’ll be showing up over the next week – a mashup of fragments from my muse and detrius from my mental garbage collector. Oh, and there’ll be pictures: I’m obsessed these days with photography. These are from a drive to California’s Lost Coast last week.