Quantum leap

It's Saturday! P-A-R-T-ugh Why?

Wednesday was part 2 of a 3 part series of surgeries I'm currently undergoing to rid myself of Ulcerative Colitis (done) and Colorectal Cancer (hopefully done) and to turn my plumbing back on (tharrrr she blows).

What was expected to be a mere 3-3.5 hours turned into an almost 7.5 hour charade. The surgery was successful in creating my J-Pouch, and Dr. Michellasi opted to hand-sew everything instead of using the typical stapling technique. From the research I've done, there are less complications after a hand-sewn surgery in the abdomen over staples. I likened it to a really expensive bag...I would much rather have something hand-sewn from Givenchy than something stapled from Claire's Boutique. We know which one would last longer. Plus my surgeon is Italian...the whole simile could go on forever.

Out of surgery, Wednesday afternoon, I was in a blissful state. I assume it was the anesthesia drugs. I was chatty, witty, and relatively in no pain.

Not so fast there, Willy-Bob!

Wednesday night was uncomfortable, but I was able to sleep for the most part. Thursday came and I was beginning to feel like I'd been hit by a Mack Truck. It started with some shoulder pain...something I was anticipating from the last surgery, then began what I can only describe as a demon living inside my gut...and not in the "cute pregnant way" but in the "oh my God, you're birthing Satan's spawn way."

Thursday night approached and though I hoped and prayed that the worst might be over - it had only just begun.

Around 3am on Friday morning, I began to vomit...which you've read in another post as something I am not a fan of. This happened 2-3 times over the course of the wee morning hours. I had essentially had no form of sustenance besides the drip IVs into my arm, but according to the good doctors, you're body produces 1L of bile per day even without eating.

When the physician's came around on Friday morning, the diagnosis was that I had developed a blockage (much like before) and Dr. Michellasi had a 3-part solution.

  1. Catheterize the stoma to make it drain.
  2. Nasogastric Intubation to pump my stomach and stop the vomiting.
  3. CT Scan of the Chest and Abdomen to check for any physical blockages.

The catheter was the easiest and most immediate relief. The ostomy bag filled almost immediately with what had been blocked by my swollen abdominal wall (what...are my abs getting in your way, Stoma?). The sucker blew up like a balloon.

The nasogastric intubation was the worst. I hated it from the minute I understood exactly how it worked. They lube a plastic tube, shove it up your nose, down your throat, and then they ask you to assist by swallowing. I felt completely and utterly helpless. And to top it all off, my body had been holding its stock of bile and felt that as the tube descended, it should release the reserves all over my chest, my abdomen, my crotch, my bed, and my doctor. Imagine the Exorcist movie where her head spins all the way around as she pukes...that was me. It really was the darkest of days.

Friday afternoon came and I was beginning to feel a bit better minus all the muscle pain and strain. I was given Ativan to take the edge off and make me a little less bitchy with the nursing staff whom I had convinced myself were trying to kill me. I was also given Talvin for pain...and I was out like a light.

Saturday morning - quantum leaps - I'm a new man. The blockage is gone, I'm still on my epidural for pain management. My muscles have relaxed AND I got Jello today.

I'm amazed at what the body can endure. I was surprised that my brain allowed my body to get thru it all. But in the end, I'm happy to have experienced what I did. It makes the end product just that much more rewarding.