Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Long Goodbye...Until Tomorrow, or as Wayne Coyne Would Say "Atomic Orange Psychedelic Diarrhea!!"

After spending the entire weekend thus far in the bathroom "cleansing" my bowels (Saturday by virtue of my still-mysterious gastrointestinal condition that I can't take my meds for and today by surgeon's orders), I am growing weaker by the hour. Oh, yes, I'm pumping fluids, so I am only a tad dehydrated, so I switched to Gatorade. And I'm not hungry, for I'm never hungry, but I've decided to treat myself to some probably-frowned upon bubble gum to chew. One can only take the taste of Magnesium Oxide mixed with cranberry juice without puking, even having taken anti-nausea pills this morning.

I honestly wish Wayne was around to see the Orange Creamsicle color of what's coming out of my body. Knowing Wayne and knowing what kinds of pictures he posts on Twitter, no doubt he'd be amazed and would let the whole world vividly see it in photographs from his iPhone. He'd call it psychedelic. And it truly is. I think I have a pair of pants somewhere that color, that are *supposed* to be that color. (Speaking of pants, my watermelon-colored J Crew corduroys were quite well-received at church last night. Now THEY'RE psychedelic.)

This is brutal. Narcotics withdrawal is MUCH easier on your system than this is. Trust me. Over the course of the next couple of weeks, anyway, I'm going to lose more weight, which I can't afford to lose. At my cardiac clearance checkup, Tatus said that it takes really skinny people (down to 116 from 118 last week) a lot longer to heal from major surgery than it does people with, frankly, a lot more "padding" insulating their bodies, to put it politely. No wonder I recovered from my c-section so rapidly. Topping 200 lbs, and out of necessity of taking care of an infant, I fucking bounced back like a trooper. But I was 27 at the time. I haven't had the energy in the last year to play basketball with Luke, much less potentially be ripped open from stem to stern again.

It's not like diarrhea is new to me. I've had it chronically for like 2 years. And vomiting, profusely. But this is total ATOMIC BLAST OVER HIROSHIMA diarrhea. Why do I take Lomotil, the drug for which I was fired from my job? Because on Lomotil, I can have a few "normal" movements a day, instead of turning into an unstoppable crazy train of misery, which would've been the case at work had I *not* taken Lomotil in the first place. I honestly am saying I have an emergency Lomotil (from Stosh) sitting on my desk if this train rolls longer than, say, 8pm. Sorry, but at that point, I need my hour to watch "Desperate Housewives" and then call Kate in Massachusetts, UNINTERRUPTED, only to smoke and/or urinate on the infrequent occasion (it's amazing how much liquid you can ingest and yet how thirsty you get in this state).

Everyone is chanting the mantra of "laproscopic" and not open surgery. It's not that I'm not optimistic that the easier route will be a success, it's just given the history of the anatomy and adhesions in my abdominal area, it seems grim. I could be blissfully wrong, but the not-knowing until tomorrow around noon is so, so hard. I can only pray that the recovery is swift and that I get some strength back soon.

...It's been especially hard on Luke, with whom I had to part at noon until he comes to visit at the hospital tomorrow night with his Dad. He's SO worried about it being open surgery and me missing Easter and staying at his Dad's a whole week apart from me. We shared a lot of hugs and kisses after I let him sleep in until 10am, after which he frantically ate breakfast, packed up his 2 suitcases of stuff (one is solely probably his electronics, I dunno, I wasn't watching him) and soon enough, Craig was at the door ready to take him to his home.

I kept a confident front for the sake of my son, and told him I was pretty sure it'd be laproscopic, and that when he sees me tomorrow night, I'll be lucid (that's questionable, you know me and pain management) and can talk to him (as coherently as I ever do when I'm doped up) and visit with him in leisure. I might not be very huggable, but I'll be ultimately, eventually, fine. But he was hugging me as if he's never going to see me again, upstairs, downstairs. I kept repeating, "You'll see me tomorrow night and I'll be OK." That kid is tough as nails, but for some reason, this particular surgery has him frazzled beyond belief. I know Craig's got it covered, so I'm not that worried, but still...I told him at worst, it'll be the same kind of surgery I had having him (sort of, not quite as cut and dried...). And I lived through that!

Looking up at my shelves in the bedroom and the giant letters that spell out "SERENITY" on a sign, I'm not feeling very serene. I want to talk to my best friend on the phone, but I can't engage in conversation long enough without having to bolt back to the john. At least she understands my vexing conundrum, having had numerous abdominal operations herself.

Why didn't I have to go through this (literal) crap when I had my gallbladder out? That was bing-bang-boom, laproscopic, and I was out in 3 days (more pain management problems and my heart was misbehaving, couplet and triplet beats, not cool). Or even when I had my c-section with Luke? For Christ's sake, I'd eaten a bucket of popcorn and had a 40 oz Coke at the movie theater 2 hours before he was born. I understand from a medical standpoint the advantage of having a clean bowel in the OR, but considering they won't let you eat for 2 days, then they won't feed you for another day afterwards, and they expect you to produce defecation before they'll even think of discharging you is an enigma. One would think subsisting solely on clear liquids and then IV fluids wouldn't garner a giant, "YOU ARE FREE TO GO" crap. Though who knows?

My mom has a list of people to call once the surgery's over and we all know which fate is mine. The church/school is #1, to let Luke know that I'm ok so he can soothe his soul and inform the Pastor. She then has to call Craig, my AA sponsor, and definitely my best friend, Kate, as well as my brother. The rest of my friends will have to wait until I'm up in my room, capable of having my mom plug in my laptop or cell phone, and either Tweet, blog, Facebook or text/call the masses with my present condition. Tatus' schedule is up in the air from day to day, but he knows how to keep tabs on the progress of the surgery and will ideally be in recovery, which will definitely calm me down. They won't let my mom see me until I'm in my room. Poor Ma has to lug my suitcase around and try not to have my laptop stolen. Sorry, Toots, but welcome to the techno age. In all seriousness, I appreciate her help and I'd hate to be sitting in the waiting room while MY kid was having a hysterectomy.

So suffice it to say, today I'm immeasurably suffering. Sent Ma to get more Gatorade. I love the instructions for the "cleansing." "If you haven't had a bowel movement by 8pm, administer a Fleets Enema." What if you've had like 48 bowel movements in the last 3 hours? Also suffice it to say, I'm using the A&D Ointment NOT on my tattoo anymore and wishing my mom would invest in a higher quality choice of toilet tissue.

Tonight, I have to shower with a special anti-microbial abdominal soap after I shower with regular soap. I have to lather, rinse and repeat again tomorrow morning when I wake up (at 5am). Shave legs, remember to shave legs. Wear comfortable clothing (read: leave my pajamas on). Spike up the hair because, while it's cut short enough to spike up on it's own, it's always better to look good than to feel good. All the jewelry is off...the last being my Dad's gold chain with my Grandma's gold cross on it. We'll deal with the body piercing argument/confrontation tomorrow AGAIN, as I did with the surgeon, with the pre-admission nurse, as I did with Stosh, my internist, and Tatus, those two fellas being totally PRO-ANNIE leaving the piercings in and that the likelihood of me having half my head burned off or being electrocuted is, percentage-wise, very unlikely.

I'll part my blog readers with the same thing I told everybody last night at church, as I texted Tatus last night after he checked in on me.....

See you on the flip side.

Oh, PS!

Just as a side note, for those of you who are still reading my blog after you were tisk-tisked, now on your own time, looking for dirt and referencing and trying to find blog entries that no longer exist (how dumb do you think I am?), I'll say this. A wise man was driving his son to school one day when he passed a church's sign, much like the ones you see all over the place that have statements or tidbits of advice on them, or you know, when they hold services and all. The church sign simply said this:


From that simple statement came this song, dedicated to you:

And if any of you couldn't stomach my graphic diarrhea story and went running to your own toilets, grow a pair, motherfuckers.

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