Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Epidural, Take 2

Yesterday I received a second set of injections in my back. I arrived 35 minutes early for my pre-op (which is an hour before my actual injections), so I ended up laying around on a hospital bed, scrunched up on one side half naked trying to cover my entire body with a thin short sheet that wasn't quite long enough to cover my feet, freezing my buns off and reading about Obama Finding His Faith and a disturbing story of a woman who died waiting for help in a mental hospital's emergency room. Though completely starved and dehydrated (I hadn't had anything to eat nor drink since the night before, and it was already 1pm), I was pretty relaxed and ready to roll.

My "roommate" however, a woman who was in the pre-op bed next to mine also getting prepped for injections, was not.

I could not see her (they had those privacy curtains pulled around each bed) but I could hear everything. And boy, was she a jittery, nervous talking machine! It was quite amusing. And, as interesting as the story was on new up and coming company Ning, I couldn't help but put my magazine down and eavesdrop. What can I say, I'm nosy. :)

While two different nurses were sitting poking me three different times to get my IV in (apparently your veins aren't as cooperative when you're dehydrated), this loud and garish New Yorker was going on and on about how she barely trusts her clueless 19-yr old son to drive her home, let alone walk into Starbucks and order her drink correctly (because I'm a "Grande Ice Tea with Two Splendas" kind of gal) and how she's finally given up on coloring her hair to mask the salt and pepper streaks that are coming in around her face and - Nurse!! can she have a look at the results of her MRI because "I'm not really sure if I should be here or not" (seriously, she said that).

During our pre-op, amongst other things, they take your heartbeat, oxygen levels, blood pressure, etc. And, not surprisingly, this woman's blood pressure was through the roof. I mean, 215/165 THROUGH. THE. ROOF. So of course, she goes on about how her blood pressure is usually a little high (she does take meds for it), but not THAT high and it must be her nerves taking a hold of her (no shit!) since she really isn't looking forward to these injections and she's been putting it off for months and have you seen the doctor yet? because really, I'd like to see the MRI scan and maybe I should talk to him first because, are we really doing the right thing and is this really going to take care of this leg pain I've been having?

I couldn't help but giggle as I watched the nurses exchange those big eye rolls at each other behind the curtain and then calmly re-enter, telling her she'd be fine once they put a sedative in her when she's on the table.

Damn straight I'm getting a sedative! was her answer.

A couple hours later, once I was chillin' with my graham crackers and cranberry juice in post-op and shootin' the shit with the nurses, I hear her voice down the hallway getting louder and louder as they wheel her back in, to the area next to mine. She was still pretty chatty, but high as a kite and so much more relaxed. She even asked if she could get a bit more of the drugs before going home.

Most of you know, I've never been one for drugs or alcohol or anything really, that will alter my mental or physical state more than I can trust. It's definitely a control issue, and I whole heartedly admit that can be a problem at times. I refused to take any drugs when delivering Logan, and I refused both times the offer for a sedative while my doctor plucked away at my nerves like a guitar-fiddling maniac. Instead, I take a deep breath, will my blood pressure to drop 10 more points and face it head on.

However, even my own heart skipped a few beats faster the minute this woman rolled back into the room rambling on again about her poor son (...do you know this state requires you to have car insurance for your kid once he starts driving, even if he doesn't own a car! but in my state you are only required to get car insurance if you own a car and that is so much more logical...). No longer as amusing, I noticed myself glancing up at the clock several times after that, wondering when Jon would arrive so I could get the hell out of there.

I hope I'll never ever be - even appear to be - a basket case like that.

Logan, I'm a "Tall Chai Latte with Non-Fat Milk" kind of gal. And I whole-heartedly trust you will get my order right, every single damn time.

And if not, then surprise me. I like surprises anyway.

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