Following on from yesterday. Adam and I had a really rough day. We were both stressed, upset and over everything causing us to hit rock bottom.
4pm came slowly and mum and Adam took me to SJOG. My admission nurse was young and way too bubbly for the mood I was in. She asked a million questions about my ring, when my wedding was, why I hadn’t made plans yet and even had the guts to ask me what the port I was having inserted was for. I know she was being nice but she should of known my the distressed look on my face and the pain in my voice that it wasn’t appropriate at all. She also said goodbye to me by saying ‘I don’t EVER want to see you back here again after today, good luck’. What sort of thing is that to say when I had just told her I started chemo there next week?!
I was taken to a ward up on the seventh floor. I was a lil bit sad that I didn’t get to go to ward 4 like last time and possibly see the lovely nurses from my last stay. I was in a shared room with a very elderly lady who must of had dementia. She was saying crazy things to herself and whilst having her observations taken by her nurse, told her she loved her. It was cute, a lil sad but also kind of scary because she was speaking in Greek and I had no idea what she was saying.
Adam and mum stayed with me in my room till I was taken to the procedure waiting bay. I had my weight checked and my obs and blood sugars checked at least 3 times. Adam and I cuddled up on the hospital bed together and fell asleep and before we knew it, it was 7pm and surgery time. I was given my fluro pink ‘Lymphodema Alert’ bracelet and this time, not clear hospital bracelets with my name and details as usual, but this time red to indicate my allergy to Tramadol and Endone. I was wheeled into the waiting bay where it was cold, sterile and the roof was really water stained. Thats all I could see because I was wrapped so tightly in my blanket facing the roof. Obs were taken again and name/date of birth checks by a near-by nurse. Up until now, I still had no idea what the procedure actually involved so thought I would test the nurse..
Me – So what side are they inserting the port?
Nurse – ‘let me check your procedure forms.. it doesn’t say it on here? Were you told in advance?’
Me – No.. I haven’t even had a consultation with this surgeon before. It was all very rushed.
Nurse – ‘Well everything is signed off so I am going to get him in to talk to you before anything starts.’
All I was thinking was… PHEW.
The doctor came in shortly and had a big rushed talk to me about the whole procedure. Pretty much the first thing he said was the best place to put it was on the left. Then talked non-stop for about 10 minutes. Finally I got to say something.. ‘So I have the Lymphodema Alert bracelet on because I am not supposed to ever have anything forgein on the left side including blood pressure bands, blood tests, IV or drips….. Shouldn’t I have it on the right side?’ He thought of a second and said ‘Yep so its going to be on the right. Sorry about that.’ Lucky. My left side is the side my Mastectomy and axillary clearance was done and is still very sensitive and sore. I cannot imagine any more pain being applied to the area!
I was left lying flat and alone again. I was more hungry than I had ever felt before with my stomach in knots and feeling very nauseas to the fact I would have something imbedded into my already saw and scarred chest. Soon after a 62 year old man was brought into the waiting bay straight across from me. He spoke quite loudly and was discussing his colonoscopy bag and how it had been filling up with diarrhea all day. You can imagine this didn’t make me feel much better. I actually wanted to vomit.
A guy around the age of 22 wheeled me into the theatre room. He was pretty cute and it was nice to see someone young after being surrounded by so many old people since coming down from my ward. Before I knew it, I had a drip in my hand (horribly sore this time) and anaesthetic was being injected. I was out before he had even finished telling me I would soon feel dizzy and light hea……..
Woke up in recovery feeling pretty good. Was wheeled back into my room and as soon as I was left alone I looked at my chest. Phew, it was on the right side and just covered in bandages, swollen and smeared with Betadine, making my chest really brown. The only pain I seemed to have was in the right hand side of my back from shoulder all the way down to my hip and slightly over the top of my shoulder. It wasn’t just an ache though, it was intense. I asked the nurse why it hurt and she said ‘They are very rough in the theatre room and probably had you in an awkward spot for the 2 hours. They also used some gas, carbon dioxide – to blow your chest up so they had more room to work inside you which can cause back pain’…… GROSS!?
I had some Morphine and asked if I could go home because I wanted to sleep in my own bed to be up early for the IVF egg collection tomorrow morning. Surprisingly they said that would be okay but wanted to keep me in for a couple of hours for observation. Adam brought me some delicious food which I could barely eat and waited till he could take me home. All the morphine did to me was made me feel like throwing up so then I was shot up with some anti-nausea stuff. Pain relief wise, it did nothing at all. If anything, my back was getting worse but all I wanted was to go home. The lady next to me was making really weird noises like she was choking on vomit.
I went straight to bed, set an alarm for 5:50 to be at my next operation by 7am. I slept like a baby, maybe I had the morphine to thank for this? It must of been good for something..
Problem. Adam sat up quickly this morning yelling ‘RACH! ITS 7:05!’ Oh shit………… I recalled my alarm going off at 5:50am and thinking ‘why is this going off? I have nothing on today…’ and turned the alarm off. Idiot. I was still a bit groggy and obviously forgot. We raced out the door after throwing a few things together. At this stage, my right side of back and arm was excruciating and every time I bent over to pick something up it felt like there were air bubbles racing to my neck, then standing back up again, they raced back down.
Our nurse was great, she said it was fine and we were soon filling out a million sheets of paper work. I changed into my gown, booties and cap and we were explained the process together once more and told they were expecting to collect four eggs. I was also informed by my anethesist that I may still be awake for the moment the surgeon ‘cleans me internally and externally’ and it may be an uncomfortable experience. Umm… So glad I was knocked out quickly with the anesthetic just as I was last night! All I remember was lying in the theatre room, legs spread up in the air and each one strapped into some kind of harness/horse saddle kind of things. It looked like a torture room.
When I awoke I was in the waiting bay with a nice warm wheat pack on my abdomen, my arm was still in excruciating pain so I also had a heat pack there. They were all aware of this pain so they were careful not to move it around much. I was shot up with some drugs because my tummy was sitting at about an 8/10 pain. It wasn’t very pleasant at all. I was laying on a big nappy towel incase any blood was present. I felt like a big baby.
Adam was brought in after a while and was given a bed next to me to nap in till I could leave. He had done his part of the process with some fresh liquids which were soon to be united with my eggs! My pain went down and came back up again and the only drug they could supply me with was Endone/Oxycontin. Even though my allergic reaction had been recorded I still asked for it. 10mg couldn’t hurt and at least I’d be going home. Last time I had it was worse because I’d had 4 a day for 6 days. I was knocked out yet again and woke up at about 12. Adam was still asleep so I left him be and was told I had to eat before I could leave. They make some really awesome ham and cheese toasties!
The best news for today was that they managed to collect eight eggs! I was so happy and proud when they told me. My chances are higher than I thought. I will be calling them between 2 & 3 tomorrow afternoon to see how they are getting on. It is the most natural IVF process because they release the sperm to the eggs to do their own thing as they would normally in the females body. So I am sure we will have no problem with the rest of it 🙂
After coming home I was very flushed and tired. Mum and Jess came over and brought us some goodies and not long after mum insisted I went up to bed to sleep because I felt very hot. The first day of the IVF collection is supposed to be pretty cruisey, its the 3-5 days after that can be complicated. Even now after a heavy codeine related sleep of five hours, I am feeling a bit more bloated and sore in my lower abdomen.
Adam checked on me during my sleep every 30 mins or so. I praise the ground he walks on every day. He has been so good to me and I cannot express how much I appreciate his company and love.
Here is a photo I took of him sleeping on the bed next to me at Concept Hospital. ❤
I also just took a photo of my scar and IV port. But I think I will post it tomorrow. I’m tired now. Good night.
P.s. My back is still terrible and bubbling when I move. Apparently it will take 48-72 hours to subside. I cannot wait.