Friday, December 12, 2014

On the Other Side

This is my view today...

And there's much to be grateful for... . quiet home,  own comfy bed,  having hubby and the dog near by and time to heal.

Roll the clock back a week....there was tension, sweaty palms and a lot of worry!

This was my first view of Victoria's Royal Jubilee Hospital at 6:30 am..... cold, dark and rainy.... and apparently, we might be early? The only other car next to us had a card that said 'ER Doctor".

So, once I was signed in, multi ID bracelets secured around my wrist and a feeling I just signed over my life, they wheeled me to the surgical floor. It was quite the hike and so I was glad of the chair ride.  The surgical wait room was very quiet as yet. There were two other equally nervous looking people looking like they were working getting their game face on!

After a barrage of questions on everything you could possibly think of,  I said my good bye's to Bruce and they get you gowned up and move you to a surgical bed.  I had a visit from the Orthopaedic surgeon,  Dr Duncan  Jacks who came through the door rubbing his hands together excitedly " I've got a great team in the OR today.... this is going to go great!" We confirmed the part to be replaced and he initialed my upper right thigh.  I met my anesthesiologist ( sadly, I forget his name but he was very nice) and discussed my previous allergic reactions post surgery.

Then this nurse came to see me. Her name is Carrie and I have a daughter Carrie. I asked what her second name is and she replied "Lynn".... and my daughter's second name is Lynn too!  Carrie was a lot of fun to talk with and she said she was the warm-up crew. She wasn't kidding! She lay a flat plastic sheet over all of me and then hooked it to a blower that looked like a shop vac and it inflated like a pool raft with pockets of air.  Apparently things are kept very cool (to downright cold) in the OR and they pre-warm you. I asked why so cold and she told me of the multiple layers of scrubs, gowns and plastic like aprons (yuck), face guards, masks and gloves. They simply get too hot to work comfortably.  Well, I want them in good shape and I won't care if I'm cold!

There's no more hospital pictures from here on for the squeamish of you out there (including me)  But if you are made of sterner stuff, googling "hip replacement surgery" will yield all sorts of video clips. I've read up on the techniques but fell short of watching the actual videos.

The OR was very large, very cold and very full....  with gowned people, tools of the trade and equipment. I don't think I ever registered just how many people it takes in the operating room to fix you up.  There was a formal identification of who I was and what was being done and then one by one they all acknowledged hearing.  This is good thing at any time but in particular with me as I had switched from a knee to a hip.  I breathed into a mask and took three breaths...... { I guess it didn't matter really as I needed both done! }

I awoke in a bed with a nurse saying it was all over and that the surgery had gone very well.  I woke up yet again with the bed being pushed through a hallway as they took me to the semi private room.  There was no scooting over... or pulled over as in the past. The bed I was on was the one for my room. I later found it was valued at $25,000.00 and it did everything! There was a switch to control the lights, the television if you signed up for one and the blinds on the window!

Six hours after the surgery started at 10 am, I was helped up and used a commode chair beside the bed at 4 pm.  My surgeon was impressed!  I told him the lack of a catheter more or less made it necessary....     That evening I made some phone calls and felt just fine.  I even slept okay that night.

The next two to three days.... not so much! Little sleep, dizziness, nausea and vomiting and  a bad, bad head ache. It was happening all over again just like my last hip replacement thirteen years earlier!
After two days of this, I took a deep breath and then refused the Dilaudid.   Six hours later, head ache is easing off and tummy is feeling better.  Opiate intolerance again!  Some phone calls to and fro and I was given another class of pain meds and after crossing fingers and toes, tolerated a low dose of another.  [There are three classes of narcotic pain medicines for them to choose from]   I fell behind on  progress and physio but I managed to start doing more as I felt more my own self again.

I came home this past Tuesday and that was the major event for the day. Getting dressed,  getting into a car, driving the hour home and getting into the house was more than enough for me.  I came in and settled onto a hospital style bed and took a nap straight away!  Two or three hours later, I very, very slowly went up the fourteen stairs to the main floor.   Each of the last three days feels just like the other but I tell that I'm moving better, not getting so tired and best of all.... thinking more clearly!  All the stress and strain, pain and such had me feeling muddled and off my game and I'm happy to be more myself again.

Some lovely flowers from my brother and father.

Physio starts Monday and apart from that we are home for the holidays!
I hope you are all busy weaving away and nearly ready for Christmas....   we're all snuggled in and as done as we will be for now!


Cindie said...

Good to read your post - I've been thinking of you this week. Glad you're home and on the way to recovery.

Dianne said...

So glad you're home and all went well. All the best for a speedy recovery.

Anonymous said...

i wish thar you will be okay in some weeks ,be will take time until everything is well grown together, and use all opportunities to physiotherapy ..
this will help you

liebe grüße wiebke

Kathryn Rudy said...

Your blog has given me such pleasure and inspiration. I hope you feel great asap and are back to the loom.

maliz said...

Good to read, that you´re home again.
I wish you all the best and hope you´ll get well soon!

barbara said...

Good Morning Susan - thank you for the well written summary of your hospital experience - what a wonderful "crew" of professionals you had looking after you! We so often hear "the bad stuff", and never enough of the positive; though I know there are many more positive experiences then "the bad stuff". You seem to be "on script" with your recovery, and that is wonderful. I trust physio will go well, and I know you will do the exercises daily at home. Merry Christmas to you and Bruce. Weaverly yours ........ Barbara

Louisa said...

Yay! Glad things went well, Susan, except for the pain meds and that you're back home safely. (My own recent little hand surgery pales in comparison.) I figure the docs are practicing up for when I'll need a new hip too!

Take care and hope you heal quickly!

... Bimbi said...

Good to hear all went well. Speedy recovery!

Bimbi xx

Dee said...

So glad and relieved that you made it through the surgery well (mostly). I hope that as each day goes by you feel better and better!1720

Susan Harvey said...

from a friend...

Hi Susan,

Could not comment on your blog as I don't have the correct id so this note instead. I have a daughter Carrie Lynn too, born in 1975. Small world!! I think I liked the name from Little House on the Prairies series by Laura Ingalls Wilder, favourites when I was little myself.

Glad to hear your are doing ok. Have a great Christmas!


Susan Harvey said...

From dear friend Linda Carta.... who needs some gentle instruction on the complexities of leaving a comment :)

The digital gods are trying their darndest to keep me from messaging you. I sent you a note HERE this morning, but it wouldn't post. Go figure. Susan, it is so good to read your notes on having made it through a very large hurdle and doing as well as anyone can expect on the other side. Know that you have so many people sending you their best energies…me included. Just relax and focus on 'the next step'. Love and hugs!

Karen Reff said...

I'm so glad you checked in; I've been wondering how things are going. I hope you feel better every day!

Peg Cherre said...

Glad you're home and doing well, Susan. Take it easy and enjoy your family and 'time off.'

spinne said...

I wish you all the best!

Elizabeth said...

I'm happy to hear that the surgery went smoothly and you are now on the way to recovery.
Happy healing!

Exidia said...

I'm a newbie here - and I'm so impressed by the photos going in to hospital - when it happened to me I was too scared to think of photography!
I had my left hip replaced 4 years ago and I haven't looked back, just do the exercises religiously and you'll be fine! With very best wishes

Sandra Rude said...

Here's to a quick recovery, so you can get back to the loom soon.
All best wishes,

Sharon said...

Congratulations on your new hip! With your positive attitude and determination, you'll be back on your feet in no time. Happy healing~