Friday, September 30, 2005

The Pre-Admit

8:00 am, at the hospital. Sporting my new short, short, surgery haircut (no bed head for me) I checked in to Admitting. Then down the hall to some other waiting room (can't remember what they call it). When called I was led into a small office where a nurse (at least she was dressed like one) ask me about my family’s medical history and mine. It seems I have given this information so many times over the past month and a half, to every doctor, doctor’s assistant, nurse, receptionist….Almost makes me want to start making stuff up just to make it different.

She asked about allergies, made notes about the food I can’t eat. Mainly MSG, which she mentioned the hospital doesn’t use. That’s a surprise. I’ll believe it when I see it. She was bummed out that I can’t eat Jello, that clear fluids, old hospital stand by. What will I eat? We talked for about 45 minutes. She gave me stuff to read about what to expect, told me what I can have the day before and to expect to be on the toilet all day with the two fleet enemas I have to take.

And this is the weekend my sister’s family is coming to visit and we are having Christmas/Thanksgiving dinner. It was to all happen on Sunday but my mom got everyone to change it to Saturday so I could enjoy it too. That will be nice. Well I have stuff to get done. Clock is ticking. 3 more days to rip-out time.

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Tuesday, September 27, 2005


The day after the pre-op I wake up with a cold! Sore throat, bit of stuffiness, touch of fever. I thought the surgeon should know. I don’t know if it is a big deal or not. I’m a non-medical person. I don’t remember hearing from the surgeon, doctor or anyone what should happen if I get sick before surgery I just thought someone should know.

I call the surgeon’s office.
After the 2 minutes or so of voice mail I get the receptionist who cuts me off in mid sentence to tell me I need to talk to the surgery schedule office and patches me through.

Talk to the scheduling office. The lady tells me that surgery will be canceled if I can’t get rid of it and to call my family doctor and tell him.

OK. Call the doctor’s office.
Get the receptionist. She tells me I need to call the message desk and gives me the number.

All right. Call the message desk.
Once that lady hears my reason for calling she talks in a grave tone as she tells me she will tell the doctor right away and get back to me. Great! Sounds like I got through to the right person to tell.

She calls me back.
If I have a cold I must tell my surgeon since he is the one to make the decision to operate or not. I don’t think I’ll waste time telling you what I felt like saying to that. Rather I told her I had done that and was told to call my doctor. Well see how you feel in a couple of days and then call your surgeon back.
Thanks. I think I just wasted a good 30 minutes at least.

I rush out the door to get some work hours in and when I come back for lunch there is a message for me. It is the receptionist from the hospital admitting office wanting to schedule my pre-admission appointment (that’s when they will take my blood and make me pee in a cup). Hmm, she is saying this is the second message she has left and is wondering if she has the right number. So I listen to all the messages left on the machine and sure enough there is another message, left before, but in the first message she doesn’t say why she is calling, she just leaves her name and phone number. I guess I could have heard it before and ignored it because I don’t know her. Or maybe DH, Barry heard it and forgot to tell me.

So I call back.
She is thrilled to hear from me, knows I have a cold and that it isn’t like me to not call back. Who has she been talking to? It is nice to talk to someone who is all pleasantness and smiles. The appointment is made for Friday morning. Then, out of the blue, she asks if I have been rushing around trying to get things done before the surgery. I must answer yes. “Well”, she says, “now it is time to relax and get rid of that cold. You’ve been planning for this surgery. You don’t want to miss it. I sound just like my mother.” She sounds like my mother too. OK, I’ll try.

. That is what I need. I have got to get to bed at a decent time tonight. But right now, I gotta get back out there and make more money.

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Monday, September 26, 2005

The Pre-Op

So I had my pre-operation physical today. No biggie. Listen to my heart, check my reflexes, look in my mouth, ears, eyes. poke my tummy - Done.
"What! That's it? No taking my blood? No peeing in a cup?"
He told me that the papers I got in the mail about the surgery will tell me what kind of blood tests need to be done and I can do that any time. Now where did I put those.....

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Thursday, September 22, 2005

CT Scan - What a Trip!

First you can't eat or drink anything three hours before so if your appointment is at 9:30am you don't get any breakfast. Then you have to show up an hour early to drink two large glasses of water with a bit of something in it that makes your bowels glow. It’s just like tap water with a little extra tinny or chemical taste. The last few gulps are difficult to get down because you are sick of it and hungry for just about anything else.

Your glad the washroom is close by because you have to use it several times before you are called in 15 minutes late. During all this waiting time you are almost driven mad because some poor patient's IV is beeping in the hall. You look at all the nurse/doctor looking people walking by and wonder, “Can't someone check on that?”, “Is that lady ok?”, “I guess it must be ok since everyone is ignoring it except for me and the woman sitting beside me with her book turned over on her lap and complaining to me she can’t read with that thing going off like that.”

You start to think you should visit the washroom again when a nurse summons you into a large room where you are asked to lay down on a stretcher while she inserts an IV needle. She explains the IV is for an injection that will be given to you during the scan. She goes on to say the drug will give you a “warm” feeling through your arms and make it’s way down to your “bottom”. This injection will make you taste and smell “something” and make you think you wet the bed.

You want to say you really do have to go to the bathroom but that would be awkward now that you are there with a needle in your arm, which, by the way, is driving you nuts; it hurts and is itchy. You manage to fight the urge to pull it out and scratch when the nurse leaves the room by singing a silly Sunday school song you can’t remember most of the words to.

Finally she comes back and leads you to the next room. Sitting in the center of the room is a large, upright, square donut looking all sleek and modern. Sticking out of the hole is a bed. Yes, that is where you go; you will soon be put in that donut hole. Once you are lying down the nurse asks you to unbutton your jeans and pull them down. Hmmm. That will be difficult with a needle stuck in elbow pit. You try doing it with one hand and end up letting the nurse do it. After helping you lift your arms above your head she leaves.

You’re alone in the room with the big donut. The donut moves. It is coming up your body. Closer and closer to your face. It stops just at your chin. The inside rim of the donut hole is clear and you can see the innards spinning around it. It is mesmerizing. It slows down so you try to distinguish what is in there. Stop! Don’t do that! It’ll make you dizzy and you feel weird enough.

Then it speaks to you. Telling you to hold your breath and then to breathe. The nurse’s voice comes out of ……. I’m not sure where and tells you she is starting the IV now. Sure enough you feel a warm, tingling feeling move through your arms, your shoulders, you taste and smell “something” er… not yummy. The feeling, which is quite over whelming, moves down to … there and you are sure you peed! It is bizarre!

Then it is over. The feeling goes quickly away. The nurse comes back. While she removes the IV the nurse mentions that your blatter is quite full. Good! Its' still there. After putting pressure on your needle wound for the longest minute she finally lets you go.

So I’m just one more step closer to surgery. On Monday I go for a pre-op physical with my regular GP. In the mean time just trying to get everything done before the 3rd. Tomorrow I will be staying home. My nephew is coming over for the day. This will give me a chance to do some unpacking and act like the stay-at-home mom I really am.

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Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Finally! A Surgery Date!

October 3rd! Yikes! I was really hoping it would be later in the month. That is only 2 weeks away. I won't be able to finish my job, which runs until the end of October. I need to arrange for teachers for Children's Church for at least 6 weeks. About a month ago I started sorting out all the stuff we have for Children's Church and deciding how to store it. I still haven't finished that and the one classroom has piles of stuff all over the place. It doesn't look like we will have Pioneer Clubs until after Christmas since I still don't have the number of teachers I need. Even if I got them tomorrow I don't feel I would have enough time to prepare them and start the program. I've already decided that I won't be doing a Christmas program. I have to finish unpacking (from moving), need to arrange the basement and fix up my room. And, somewhere in all of that, put in as many working hours as possible. Two weeks.

Giving up my Children's Church class will be the hardest. I love doing it and the curriculum is so much fun. I do have a couple of teachers willing to do it. I need to get together with them and discuss it. I will miss the kids.

But I will be spending lots of time with my girls. I am really looking forward to that. Reading stories, drawing pictures, doing schoolwork surfing the net, watching TV, all together.

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Thursday, September 15, 2005

Life goes on...

Not much to update. Well, nothing special. I still don't have a surgery date. The fall stuff is starting to happen. Bronwyn started back at Highland dancing lessons on Saturday. Homeschool activities have started. Last Friday we participated in the homeschoolers' camp out at Kakabeka Falls. It rained and thundered and lightning-ed half the night and then the Hydro damn set off it's siren several times to warn people down stream that they were letting extra water out. What I would just like to ask is "Who is going to be down stream in the middle of the night?!" We didn’t get much sleep but had fun anyway.

This Sunday Children’s Church goes back to normal: two separate classes instead of just one. Pioneer Clubs is still on hold while I try to round up enough leaders. I don’t want to start and then have to stop when I have the surgery. Pastor Irv is going to help with this one. He is preaching on the importance of Children’s Ministry and promoting the Club. So I will wait one more week before canceling it all together until after Christmas.

My job is going well. Got good reports from my boss and her assistant. But I miss the girls. Almost every day I take them to someone else’s house so I can work. I try to remember that I will have lots of time with them when I am recovering from surgery. I started reading “Children and the Holy Spirit: How to set your child’s heart on fire for God” by Mark Harper. In chapter two he quotes from writings on past revivals, how children were affected, respected by leaders and used by God. Fascinating stuff.

I am exited about starting our new curriculum for the 6-12 y/o’s. It is the second book in the Young God Chasers curric by Dian Layton. The first book completely changed the effectiveness of our time on Sunday morning. The kids learned to Chase God, spend time with him in prayer and worship, pray for each other and adults alike. We capped off the year in June with a presentation and ministry time in the “Big Church”. The kids and, even more important, Jesus’ love and power blew the adults away. It was an amazing thing to see the front of the church full of adults on their knees, sitting, lying down, some still standing, some weeping, all being moved by God as the children quietly touched them and prayed. Can’t wait to see what God has in store for us this time around.

BTW, everything Dian Layton writes is awsome. I will have to post more about her later. She is my hero. But right now I must go to bed. I broke my glasses at the camp out and these contacts are driving me crazy. Poor eyes.

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Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Chocolate Cyst-MMM Chocolate

Actually it is yukky, not yummy. That is the kind of cyst my surgeon now says I have. Apparently the dermoid cyst conclusion was made by another doctor who looked at the ultrasound. When my surgeon looked at it he didn't see that and the x-ray confirmed it. So endometriomas is a blood filled cyst that looks like chocolate when they cut it open. It usually causes a lot of pain during periods but I haven't had that. My surgery will be in October. I will have a definite date within the week. The surgeon will make a vertical cut (a large one) take out the cyst and, most likely, the ovary it is connected to. Another doctor will look at it and decide in about 5-10 minutes if it contains cancer cells. If it does (not very likely) he will give me a complete hysterectomy. If it doesn't (much more likely) he will sew me up. It will be difficult and painful and time consuming and annoying and interfere with my life! I gotta go to work and get in as many hours as I can.

I am currently working as an enumerator for Statistics Canada which means I get to walk the streets and check addresses. I also get to see what people do with their gardens and yards, meet many different people, see communities and streets I didn't even know existed. I am finding it fascinating! It is also good exercise. I am going into this surgery in good shape. The job runs until the end of October but this surgery will interfere with that. Once I go under the knife my job will be over. So here I go to make money!

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Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Happy Birthday Barry!

Yes, this handsome guy is 41. Isn't he cute! Sinead (daughter #1) looked at it and her only comment was, "I hope he didn't always look like that". Sheesh! Most guys looked something like that back then, didn't they? Hair parted down the middle, swept back, just like Andy Gibb. (Man, that's a creepy memory) But really, what's with the big bow tie? Barry doesn't like this picture and cringed when he figured out what I was doing with it out of the frame. I like it. I didn't know Barry back then. I like to look at it and wonder if I did know him would we have clicked? Probably not. Our lives were very different then. I am glad that God introduced us at the right time, the time we were ready for each other. I love you, Barry. Happy Birthday!

Tonight we are are off to the inlaws for birthday supper. I go to the surgeon again tomorrow. Hope to have a surgery date.


Thursday, September 01, 2005

Death to Cysarow

I curse you Cysarow!
You interrupted my life, unwanted, unneeded, bane of what order I had in my life.
Now life must be reordered, plans remade. Time must be spent to have you excised, time consumed in recovery.
So be it!
It is a price I am willing to endure to have you removed and destroyed.
You are the catalyst in a test of character I am determined to win.
So cursed be Cysarow and blessed be
Heaven's Prince of Glory who's running by my side.
What is his name? Jesus!
And I will praise him!

Yes, it's happened. I named the cyst. The surgeon called it a dermoid cysts, a disgusting thing that contains tissue from all the body parts. Yes, that means it has skin, hair, bone and teeth in it. Ahhhhhhhh! I have a garbage bag containing spare parts inside me! Get it out! Get it out! I should have a date for surgery when I see the surgeon again on Wednesday.

In the mean time I am fine. The only symptom I have is bloating every time I eat and my pants don't fit quite right. I guess I'll live. Oh, and the good thing is that the doctor is satisfied that it is not cancerous. Besides the fact that it is not common for ovarian cysts to be cancerous the doctor told me that this one just doesn't look like cancer. Yay!
PS: That last bit of my "Cysarow rant" was inspired by a Doug Horley song I am teaching the King's Jewels in Kingdom City (the kids in Children's Church). I can't remember the name of it but it is about running the race and never quitting. Good tune and the arrangement reminds me of "Today's Special". You remember that kid's show from the 80's with the mannequin that comes to life when the store closes. He had this jazzy way of dancing. I decided to have fun with this song and worked out some simple jazz moves to it. The kids loved it and really got into it. I was surprised. It was cool.

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