Friday, February 10, 2017

Repurposed Em - The First Two Weeks Post-Op

RepurposedEm #5

Happy Friday!
Happy Saint Day - Saint Scholastica, Patroness of Nuns.
I truly hope your day was blessed.

Friday is almost over, I've just been slow to write. It's been a tough, and yet blessed two weeks since surgery (it will be two weeks Monday the 13th).

These are pictures of me before surgery...


And after surgery....

In my mind, I was going to have surgery and be out running around the next day. I can tell you that I was wrong. It did not go that way.  I'm not good with hospitals, medicines (narcotics/anesthesia) and apparently I'm not good at being realistic about what I can do. HA

The good news is, my friend Domenica flew out from Washington State and cared for me.  I got up and walked that evening. I remember that. And I have vague memories of my son being there for a little while with my husband.  The day nurse said I could go home if I wanted, but my insurance insisted on my staying and it's a good thing.

A few months ago, I had a sleep study done. It said that during the night my oxygen stats were in the 70's. This is not good. I have been an asthmatic all my life and used to get pneumonia yearly and bronchitis a lot. So it doesn't shock me that my lungs don't hold enough oxygen. But had I not stayed, I would not have met the respiratory therapist who insisted I called to make an appt. with a pulmonologist immediately. He said that I don't need a CPAP, I need Oxygen. He set my levels at a five (whatever that means) and I stayed saturated all night.

I came home on Tuesday afternoon and I got such great care. I had fever for a day or two, but it went down pretty good. Domenica and the hospital concurred it was stress and being run down from surgery. Sigh. It was so great to have Domenica there, helping me, Christopher and Marque. I just can't tell you. <3  And my husband and son - they really stepped up to all the chores, helping me with everything... amazing.

Funny story. So one evening, my bra had rubbed the scab off my highest suture area and my shirt/bra were soaked with blood. The entire time, I had no idea because I had a blanket on and could not feel it. When I was changing I said, "oh my gosh, I'm bleeding". Christopher got there first and started to help and I said to get his dad... I mean - I was all exposed. No time for embarrassment. Anyway - nothing was wrong or open - thank God. But it was scary. And really - other than normal gas pains and being tired, etc... that was the worst thing that happened this past week or so of recovery! I'd say it went well.

You would not believe the cards, and flowers and food people sent. It was amazing. Our family is so blessed. Seriously!  I am a "do for you" person, and it was a huge lesson in humility and love. Amazing!

The first week Post-Op, it's all about clear liquids and trying to get in 40g of Protein, and walking - lots of walking -- AND resting.  I have five suture areas on my abdomen. And my right side hurt pretty badly all week. When I went to the doc on Monday, they said to take the muscle relaxer because they went through muscle - EWWW! So that helped.

This week, I got to add Protein shakes and unsweetened apple sauce, and PUDDING! WOOHOO! I go back on Monday to get additional add-ons starting next week.  Today, I went on an outing to my son's Karate Class and to the grocery store. THEN - I napped.

What did I learn?

  • You have to take it easy after surgery.
  • You have to take the meds because they help you heal.
  • You have to learn to rely on others, and it's OK!
  • You have to walk.
  • You can't take your crankiness due to not being able to do things out on your family (who me?)!
  • You have to stay hydrated.
  • You need a good support group.

It's really been a great couple weeks, when all is said and done. I've lost 12 lbs since surgery. My total loss is 38 lbs. And I'm very happy with it.

I pray you are learning from my experiences.
If you have any questions, ask and I will try to answer.

Love, Hugs & Blessings,


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Em