Some may have noticed a hiatus in my blogging. I owe you an explanation! August 9th I went ‘under the knife’ for the second time in my life. I have enjoyed good health, over my many years but my back has been talking and recently screaming so much that if I did not have surgical intervention I would shortly be in a wheelchair. After years of trying everything but the knife, I had to accept there was nothing else. I had to be put to sleep for 5 1/2 hours to have rods, pins, and screws support my skeleton, as you see in the image
I was apprehensive is, to put it mildly. I had only been in the hospital once before to have my appendix removed. There were several realizations from this experience and of those a few worthy blogging. I found healthcare continues to stereotype individuals by sex and age. I was trained to always treat the patient not the disease. However, as a patient, I was repeatedly told, ‘at your age expect not to go straight home but to a rehab facility’. I hadn’t had the surgery, yet it was drummed into me to expect rehab. Fortunately, I take whatever doctors say as potentially inaccurate given their breadth and scope of generalizations. I guess that comes from their ‘CYA’ mentality. We all know what that stands for.
Before the procedure, I was more than mildly apprehensive. I was preoccupied with the likelihood of experiencing ‘anesthesia awareness’. I was totally honest with my anesthesia friend who said that was then not now-apparently the drugs now are totally different, you can imagine my sigh of relief. The procedure was ‘guessed’ to last over five hours. Would my body or part of it react negatively to being ‘under so long’? Would I be able to talk without hoarseness by Thanksgiving? Honestly, I never thought about how much better I would be at walking and functioning, how I would be able to sit on any chair, no longer have to wear special shoes, be able to go up and down stairs. So yes, I went under with all of these apprehensions, but with the support of medical and non-medical friends, I’m finding my life much better post-procedure.
Another realization that I never thought about, although many have experienced this, was the ‘sticker shock’. Fortunately, after 5 1/2 days, I was home, did not require rehab, had only one narcotic pill, no intravenous treatment, no antibiotics, no x-rays after surgery, no breathing treatments, and of course I never got a bath nor sponged. You might guess – my bill was pennies shy of a quarter of a million dollars.
Now on the other side and supported with titanium rods – I am back!