Monday, March 22, 2010

*Medical Alert.* My Excellent Dear Good Friends: I Am Dying.

.
But I REFUSE to go.

Aw, c'mon, folks. A little silly overblown melodrama never killed anyone.

Even when it hits so uncomfortably close to home.

I'm back from the hospital once again. In the last year I've been admitted to B.General some 16 times, once to Holy Cross, and three times to nursing homes ("SNIF's"). I've come very close to dying at least three times. k dad calculated the actual amount of time I spent at the hospital, rather than at home, last year. He tells me I spent more time in the hospital.

And just when it seemed like it was. . . well,not over, but slowing down at least. . .

would somebody please play that music from Jaws or something? . . . well, you get the picture. . .

yeah, speed demon. Up it goes again.

Well. I'm going to break this post up into several, okay? I hope that'll help circumvent boredom, hunger, the need to pee when only half-way through. . .
* * *
I owe a lot of apologies to a lot of people for my complete lack of communication. You know who you are. I hope you'll understand - and forgive me! - once I can finally tell you how it all came down.

Today is Monday, March 22, 2010. I had "exploratory" surgery on Wednesday, March 3, then major surgery on March 8. Quite major. After that, they sent me to ICU (Trauma Center/ICU) where one of my nurses from a "previous engagement!" happened to be assigned to me one night. Oh, we talked and talked and caught up with family news, and she insisted I'd saved her orchids with my Handy Dandy Orchid Tips.

Family news. Yes. Long talks with many nurses about such, both ways. And in the pre-op waiting room was: k dad and k bro, both from Chicagoland; and k nephew, now living in Brooklyn, New York. Ah, my favorite nephew in the world! k sis was back in New Jersey, having to return to work after not one but two long and extended visits; k mom was in Chicagoland, busily working away to help pay for all those plane tickets; and finally, k niece was settling her (OUR) family in the new place they'd acquired since their house was under water and all workout attempts had failed, whereupon they moved out, cleaned up, and handed the keys back to the bank.

That tiny pre-op waiting room was crowded, people. I hope and believe I had a tight hold on my emotions. But having all that family there, for no other reason than love and supportiveness, made it very hard indeed to just talk without bursting into tears. See, our family never behaved in any classic family manner. I'm not sure we ever really knew how. But we're learning. We're not throwing away our independence; we're just adding that all-important element called "interdependence".

And you know what else? Friends and family are not allowed anywhere near those little pre-op waiting rooms. But the hospital personnel, who had every right to ask - to demand - that my family leave? They didn't. Doctors, nurse-practitioners, nurses, PCA's. Nobody.

C'mon. How often is family even allowed a kiss at the door leading in to the operating area?

Never.
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22 comments:

Nancy said...

Hooray, for K.

You sure ain't no sissy, girlie.

Joyce Ellen Davis said...

XOXOXOXO!

Morris said...

Still thinking of you, K, and praying. I needn't tell you to keep your courage up, as you've always had plenty of that. God be with you my friend.

Morris

Desert Cat said...

Well you just keep taking your sweet time with that dying business young lady, y'hear? No hurry or anything.

Nice that your family can come together as a family while you're still around to see it, no? Happiness for you for that part.

Desert Cat said...

I *thought* I heard you typing a couple days ago. :) I was thinking about sending an e-mail over the weekend to see what it was all about.

Granny J said...

So good to hear from you again. Hang in there, hear?

Pretty Lady said...

I just mailed you a package today. You had BETTER be around to receive it, do you hear???

Pretty Lady said...

Oh, and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!

John P. McCann said...

I second that happy birthday! Keep fighting! Your battles encourage me to overcome my much smaller medical dings.

Anonymous said...

I third the Happy Birthday! Waiting patiently for your next post. (Do I hear your fingers tapping on the keys?)

Anonymous said...

(The above^post is me, Pepek. For some reason it doesn't like my password after all this time.... Go figure.

SeaPhoenix said...

Hang in there, BlogMom, we all love ya.

k said...

Nancy, no more than you, woman! We are definitely some Not to Mess With type ladies. (hee hee! Now let's see if our *spice* chip in with - *ahem* - Opinions.)

Oh, Miss Joyce, I needed that. XOXOXOXOXOXOXO right back atcha.

Morris. Thank you. I'm already back here in the Trauma Center/Intensive Care Unit, so perhaps the time will be shorter than I'd hoped. A powerful reason to keep on posting as often as I can.

I feel a unique kinship with you, my friend, feeling the loss of our nutty brother so much more deeply than we'd either of us expected. You're often in my thoughts too.

DC, HA! Just LISTEN to the man, people! Just because he's my blogdad he thinks he can run around scolding me, while I'm his senior by FIVE YEARS! take THAT, sonny-boy. heh!

And yes, that was me typing, slaving away to let all y'all know what was going on once again. (Or burying myself in blogotherapy, more like.) I'll try to keep it up, too, so watch out for your ears.

And, ummm, I really have no idea if any of this is at all interesting to read.

Granny J, likewise! I'm still too stubborn to give in, so I'm kicking the nasty bad-health beasties left and right. And you know what? Lord above, the little creeps are SUFFERING. heh! Such a pleasure.

k said...

Pretty Lady, as luck would have it, I actually managed to be home at exactly the right moment. (Understand, I'm writing this from ICU. Again. The window of opportunity was not so very big.) Thank you. They are LOVELY. They go so well, both with me and my sinfully-proud-of original mandala that I'm constantly showing off, that it hit a very tender spot and I started bawling the minute Walter opened the package for me ("careful, Walter! Be Careful!!!") and I saw what it held inside.

And thank you for the birthday wishes, and Happy Birthday to a certain adorable little kitten, whose March 10 day I missed after watching for it so carefully day after day. I am TERRIBLE about such things. My own beloved Most Favorite Niece and Most Favorite Nephew rarely even got so much as a belated phone call their entire childhoods, much less a card. Never mind an actual present. Hmmm. Or their entire adulthoods, come to think. (*blush!*)

And the blessed sweethearts have assured me over and over that they don't mind, it never mattered to them. My BS Detector is extremely well-tuned, and it never flickered one hair. And...there's next year. I feel a certain affinity for her, especially in the communications department.

John. A whole lot of birthdays have passed between us. So I'll admit there are times when I think back to those old days of dumping mail together, or unloading semi-trucks...when neither of us had all that much to doctor up yet.

I loved being so strong and young and energetic. People, no one in that P.O. could throw Directs faster than me. (It ain't braggin' if ya done it.) Oh, and I was tiny! If my weight crept up to 105# (of solid muscle, excepting certain Female Attributes) I'd get all horrified and work it back down to 100# right quick.

And Ray...Bolger, was it? no, that was my favorite dancer - Ray said he'd marry me any time, because someone who worked so hard would make a very good wife. Even after he saw me break a few glass Christmas presents, throwing Parcel Post when I knew darn well Postal Pete said, *PLACE - don't THROW - Parcel Post in their bags or shelves!* Or some such.

For those of you who never had the pleasure of meeting him, after Ray's first wife died, he used to come in on off days for his paycheck, totally toasted, and wearing one of his poor wife's wigs...He did NOT fit Good Husband Material to me, although I never told him so, as is proper.

Good Lord! What am I DOING, rhapsodizing about my Misspent Youth this way?! Pay no attention, people. I was an AWFUL young person in so many ways. NOT worth meeting. Believe me, I kid you not.

k said...

Miss Pepek - wow, it feels GOOD to use your previous name, how odd! I sometimes think of your Pepek days as a sort of adolescence or larval state - dare I say caterpillar? heh! where was I? Ah! Thank you for the birthday wishes. I LOVE to get more birthdays; I've never minded getting older, although I did notice, right around forty, a bit of regret over those inevitable physical changes. But, happily, the women in our family rarely wrinkle, at least.

heh! that's ONE less thing to worry about.

The next post is already COMPLETELY written. Now it just needs me to sleep on it for a night, and out it will spill. So yes, that WAS the pitter-patter of little keys you heard.

And sorry for the mishap with your name. At first I liked to think it was my laptop, but that makes no sense, does it? because, of course, what you post goes flying around into the ether before it ever once hits any of our computers. I think.

Walter recently more or less inherited the laptop I'm using here in ICU - it's not my beloved Mystery Computer, which is safe at home, as you'll see in the next post. This one? She's been around the block a time or two (and yes, she's a she); her joints are creaking and her, uh, special parts are beginning to make her believe that gravity may be real after all.

So I thought I could simply introduce the two of you, and that would solve the password problem. Then I realized that was silly. I think.

Hmmm. Can I blame it on the ether, you think?

Cefe! It's great to hear from you. You are my only blogchild - as far as I know - and oh, I was daydreaming about being an Exceptional Blogmom, and look what happened instead...(*sniff*)...And you come back and visit and comment anyway! And find the answers to Mysterious Questions, and translate Chinese spambots for me...This is one very smart, *outside-the-box* thinker, people. He is gifted.

Bless you, son. The way it ended up? You've given me far more in the blogosphere than I gave you.

Wow. I just realized - Maybe that's one reason people have kids. Hmmm.

I've been slowly making the rounds, catching up on everyone, and there is clearly some kind of Infrequent Post Virus going around my old blogroll. I thought it was only me, but I can already make quite a list. I haven't gotten to YOU yet, but I will. ;-)

Pretty Lady said...

It really is you, k! With those comments that respond to every person, pressed down and running over! And here I was today wondering if I'd ever read any of those fabulous comments ever again. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Little O is at the age where random people come up and give her presents as we're strolling down the street--her birthday was such an Over The Top occasion, what with lavish gifts from extended family on both sides, that I'm seriously worried about Spoiling. So you are forbidden to observe her birthday in any way.

I have little time for blog updating these days, but you can get the gist if you scroll down my FB page, hint, hint. Love love love.

k said...

Oh Pretty Lady, you wonderful woman! You've cheered me up no end. How in the world you could ever consider my comments as *fabulous* I'll never know. But as I'm happier simply accepting your WAY over-the-top praise than trying to talk you out of it, I'll just smile gently, make a bow in your general direction, and hope you never ever come to your senses.

I can just picture you all strolling down a Brooklyn street, with Little O drawing presents and smiles and worshippers and flowers as you go; perhaps a fellow walker or two falling into step with you for a bit, as she coos and smiles and plays with her little toes. Happy Springtime!

Pretty Lady said...

Ah, well, the world is brighter in your eyes. It's Philly, these days. Brooklyn was too expensive. We do what we must.

k said...

You see, folks? This is what you get when you don't keep up with your Buddies' Blogs, and FBs and things. They go around moving to whole new cities and you don't even know where they ARE!!!

That must have been quite a project. Are you all settled in?

I've been to New York and Philly both; they're fine cities, each, with lots of wonderful things to see, interesting people, beautiful real estate, and - I suspect - streets to stroll that are just as sunshiny and spring-timey. Sweetness abounding. Which often seems to surprise visitors, you know? I think you made a fine choice.

Now: Okay. I will, once more, brave FB. It's been a long time since it first scared me off. Often a year or two is exactly the right time for me to get over my ridiculous Fear and Horror of New Technology. Miss Joyce did it. So maybe, so can I.

heh! Wanting to know ALL the details is a powerful incentive. ;-) So much for pretending this is somehow for your sake instead of mine.

Joyce Ellen Davis said...

HAPPY EASTER! May The Force be with you!

Joyce Ellen Davis said...

Attribute my posting problems to my stupidity...I couldn't remember my name. Attribute by above posting problems to my own stupidity--I forgot my user name!

Joyce Ellen Davis said...

Besides which, I seem to be repeating myself in my old age. :(