Growth in the White Sands National Monument

Upright and coherent (mostly)

Richard Charpentier Notes from Rich 1 Comment

Here we are, Tuesday morning, and I’m mostly back to normal.  Well, normal is relative isn’t it?

Friday I had what I guess you’d describe as minor outpatient surgery.  My gallbladder now sleeps with the fishes.  It’s gone, and hopefully that means I’ll be feeling better soon.  Currently I’m not sure if I’m feeling better or not.  It’s hard to tell through the veil of pain killers.  While I’m cutting back on them, they’re the most dominant feature of this whole experience.  Being totally zoned out for days on end.  Not a fun physical sensation.

So, how did the whole process go?  Well, let’s step through it.

Friday the 19th

I’ll say the day was stressful.  I’m not a fan of doctors, hospitals, medications, or the idea that cutting me open can lead to good things.  The less puncture wounds on my person, all the better.  But after several months of incredible pain thanks to my gallbladder (who knew) I decided that the surgery idea was one worth considering.  But the build up to it wasn’t fun.

Thursday I had my last meal for a little while.  No food or drink after midnight.  My procedure was scheduled for 1:30 p.m.  I wasn’t worried about the lack of food, but not being able to drink water all day?  Uh, this is Arizona and I drink water constantly.  So that wasn’t fun.

Getting to Yavapai Regional Medical Center was easy enough.  Signing all the paperwork, financial forms, etc., was also not thrilling.  Even with insurance this is going to be a big financial hit.  Someday I hope to get ahead again!  😉

Surgery prep started at almost noon.  I was taken in, setup with an IV, and got my tummy shaved.  It is now SO ITCHY!

I met the surgeon again, the anesthesiologist, and the surgical nurse who would be working on me.  All seemed pleasant, so I was comfortable there.  Then we played the waiting game.  Jodi was allowed in and we sat for a few hours.  Nothing is ever on time.

Finally, they said we were ready.  The drip for knocking me out started up, and I was off in La La Land!

Are you ready to go home?

I woke up in recovery, and I really couldn’t tell you what time it was.  But there was a nurse with me.  And her first question was whether or not I was ready to go home……I think she was in a rush to head home herself, because that was her primary question.  Jodi wasn’t in the room yet, but the nurse really wanted to know if I was ready to leave….  What I was ready for was some water.  Or ice chips.  Yeah, ice chips.

After 20 minutes Jodi made it in.  And I suggested we wait 15 or 20 minutes longer.  I was still pretty wonky from the medication.  Zoned out to be honest.  The nurse kept asking if I was ready to leave.  Maybe she had tickets to a show or something…..she really wanted to wrap up.

Finally I felt ready to roll.  So we did.  Unfortunately I had a little scare.  Sitting in the car for the ride back one of my incision sites started bleeding.  I don’t know why, but when I reached the Airstream we got it cleaned up.  And it’s been okay.

Down the rabbit hole with Alice

Pain killers are not my friends.  I’ve never been a pill person.  And all these medications do is make me sleep restless and fitfully.  Friday evening and Saturday can be characterized as totally lost days.  Wake up with pain, take pill, drop off into a weird sleep with Futurama playing on my iPad.  Wake up and think that the show was playing from where I left off when I fell asleep.  Weird weird stuff folks!

The process was repeated over and over all Saturday.  Sunday I became more coherent, and sat up longer, and started tapering the pills.  Still, the stuff puts me on another planet.  Not fun from my viewpoint.

Almost human

Yesterday was even better.  Less need for the pain medication, more awake time, and I even read business e-mails!  And today?  Yeah, a little sore and I might do a half of a pill.  But we’re in the home stretch.  I still can’t tell if I’m feeling better or not.  Odd pains, new locations, and still somewhat woozy.  I’ll have to give it more time to decide if the gallbladder removal was a success.

So there’s the wrap.  Several days after this surgery I’m almost back to my old self.  Hopefully my old pain free self.  That would be nice.

Oh, and no pictures on this post.  4 incision sites with staples in them aren’t anything we need to share.  So just a recycled favorite image instead!  😉

Comments 1

  1. Thanks for the update… you are a courageous trooper that is determined to stay positive and keep smiling!

    Glad you’re back to almost feeling human.

    Speedy recovery… when you’re ready, can we have your liver?

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