Post-Op Recovery


IMG_1036Here I am on the evening of surgery day.  Not my best look.  Although I am a novelist who spends entire days imagining, and then writing about things I have not personally experienced, I am bad when it comes to imagining and preparing for experiences that are about to happen to me.  For instance, when I travel to cold places I tend not to pack enough warm clothes because it is not cold in Dallas and I cannot imagine being cold where I am going.  When I have surgery I do not prepare for downtime afterwards because I can’t imagine I will feel any different as a result of cutting, drilling, and anesthesia.  As you might guess, my life is full of surprises.

This is how the first week went:

Day of Surgery:  I don’t remember much about leaving the hospital.  My surgery was at 7 AM and I was home around noon.  I slept in the car going home and my husband helped me climb the stairs to my bedroom.  I slept all afternoon and when I got up around 5 pm I felt pretty good and visited with friends who delivered food.

Day 1:  Not bad.  I worked at my desk and got a lot of busywork done although I felt a bit woozy.  I napped and did a little kitchenwork.  The head gear really bothered me and I finally loosened it a bit.  Took pain meds.

black eyeDay 2:  I was allowed to remove the head gear on the morning of Day 2 and it came off at the crack of dawn.  But two unpleasant things started on Day 2:  dizzyness and a black eye.  I slept all afternoon.

Day 3:  My worst day.  Woke up nauseated and could not stay upright long enough to pour water for tea.  Took a nausea pill and promptly vomited.  Spent the entire day in bed asleep or just lying there. Could not read or write and was dizzy when awake.  Note:  no lying on surgery side of head.

Day 4:  Better.  Sometimes I would spin out of control as I lay in bed.  Opening and closing my eyes helped.  I worked at my desk and noticed that I could hear a dog whining for attention on my right side but when I looked for her she was on my left.

Day 5:  I left home.  Showed up for my regular volunteer stint and then went to the grocery store.  Seemed people were looking at me funny and I remembered my black eye.  I did not take a nap and I drove without my sunglasses, the incision behind my ear too tender for the arm of my glasses.

Day 6:  I went to the doctor’s office for my post-op appointment and got a big surprise.