Welcome to the other side

So on Wednesday morning as I was getting ready to head to the hospital, I had a conversation with my stomach, I told it that we had to break up. We've had lots of good times together, and its helped me get through a lot...of food. I tried to tell my stomach it was me, not it, that is causing this break up, because that's always what you say, however I knew that it was mostly my stomachs fault for getting me to this point in my life.

Tuesday- Thursday is all a bit of a blur for me. I picked up Mom Tuesday night, and we got things prepared for the next few days, we took Mallah to the dog park, and settled in for the night. Bright and early Wednesday morning we were off to George Washington Hospital. After about an hour of waiting patiently, my buzzer buzzed, like telling me my table was ready. A group of us were herded off to the pre op unit, where we were all told the same thing over and over, get naked, put on this lovely johnny and sit and wait. Thankfully the man in the area next to me was pretty comical with his "bu dum bum"s while he was getting ready, and asking for a hat to keep his head warm, then seeing him walk out of his room with his surgical hair net on. Thankfully my nurse was able to get my IV in on the first try. I waited for a bit longer, then Mom was able to join me. My Surgeon came up to say hello and to answer and final questions. I think I asked him something and he told me that we should just get through surgery first, Ha. I also met my Anesthesiologist, can't remember his name, but know he was Italian. I met a couple more people, one whom I was a little weary about helping with the operation, as she seemed slightly nervous just talking to me, let's hope she was the one holding my air ventilator.

I sort of remember saying good by to my mom, and being wheeled into the surgery room, I remember having to move to the surgical table, and I remember my Anesthesiologist asking if it was ok he sang to me in Italian. Of course my last words were, "Um yeah you can!" And then I was out.

I woke up in the worst pain of my life. It felt like I had been hit my a mack truck, I was too exhausted to speak, but the pain I was feeling was beyond words. I eventually came to, and my Saviour, and Recovery Nurse, Ursula. She asked how I was doing, and I flat out told her. She laughed, and got me something to help with the pain. She also said they had placed a pile of blankets behind my back and that might be playing a part in the back pain. So those were gone. And then the good stuff arrived. I began my morphine pump.

Not long after I was awake, Mom was able to come up and visit, she told me Dr. Alshkaki spoke to her and let her know things went okay, and that I had a big stomach, makes sense, since I never felt full. Unfortunately Mom was only able to visit for a few minutes then she had to go. I was stuck in Recovery for about 7 hours, while waiting for a bed to open up in the Bariatric Unit. Most of those 7 hours were spent napping, pushing my IV button and letting everyone know I was alive.

Around 6:30 I was finally taken to my room for the night. Thankfully I had a private room, with a view of a nice glass building. Mom stuck around for a bit, she helped me get up out of bed and walk around the unit for a bit, then Leah was able to pick her up. That night I was in and out of sleep, nurses coming in an out, and me trying to find some sort of comfort.

Thursday morning, I decided to get up with the help of the Nurse of course, and after walking about, I decided to sit up in a chair for a while. I didn't see much of the new Nurse shift. I don't think they came in more than once to check my vitals in a 7 hour period. The only time I saw the Nurse was when my Morphine drip was empty and she decided upon herself that I no longer needed pain medicine, and practically ripped the IV out of my hand when she was unscrewing the line.

I was able to get up and walk around the unit for a little while, and then finally at 1030 they realized they never ordered a full liquids tray for me. I finally got my tray, and tried a bit of everything, but was so afraid to hurt my stomach, or have it come back up, after a couple of hours of waiting, and trying to eat, I was finally able to go home! Mom and Leah came and got me, the ride home was a bit rough, but I managed to get through it. We stopped and got my prescriptions filled and home we went.

Thursday night is kind of a blur to me, I remember being in a lot of pain, I remember trying to eat something ,and trying to drink as much as I could. Mom made me a lovely concoction of crystal light, water and pain pills to help me get to sleep.

Friday and Saturday were the same, through this entire process I had the worst back pain, I think most of that is from the way I was laying on the surgical table so they could get a breathing tube in. I went for a couple of walks with mom, was able to shower, and tried to get down as much liquids as possible, which was tough due to my lack of appetite. Saturday, after showering, I felt very light headed and weak and decided it would be best to lay down on the couch. Mom began taking my temperature, it was high but nothing to worry about yet, then she checked again, it continued to rise for a bit, but then eventually went back down. I was finally able to find a kind of comfortable way to sit. Sleeping was still the worst part of my day, since I can't sleep on my stomach, its been hard.

Sunday was better, I was able to sleep okay, I was getting more food down, my fever was almost gone, and I was able to go for a walk with Mallah alone. Bad news about Sunday though, was that Mom left to go back home. She was such a great help through the whole week. She re cleaned our house, much better than what I had done. She cleaned the windows in both my car and outside my bedroom. Mom even put together my roommate Carrie's new shelf :) I don't know what I would have done with out my Mom, she definitely is the best!

Each day gets a little better and better. I was able to find my heating pad, which helps tremendously with the back pain. I have a little more of an appetite, and am now able to eat mushies..woohoo! Yesterday I think I did a little too much, I decided to drive myself to the store, needless to say, Leah had to come save the day and carry my groceries inside for me.

Today its been raining all day. I'm feeling better, I've been able to get a few things done for work. I might even venture out with mine and Mallah's rain coats on for a walk.

I hope that by this weekend I am feeling pretty good (I have a feeling I will be) I will be returning back to work on Monday, and am actually excited to get back into my routine.

I can't wait to be able to sleep on my stomach either!

And I wouldn't take this back at all. No matter how much pain I've been in for the past week, it's only a week. I have the rest of my life to enjoy!


  1. Sarah,

    Congrats on your new journey, I am going through the steps now to start my own journey. I told Patrick that i might seek you out for advice. I love the blog can wait to read more about your new life.



  2. Hey Vic,

    Thanks so much for reading my blog. Patrick warned me you might seek me out ;) jk...Any questions you might have, shoot, though I might not be able to answer everything, its always nice to know there is someone else out there you know going through the same thing.

  3. Too funny the part of Mom recleaning the House and putting Carries Shelf together- Mom definitely is the BEST!


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