I didn’t sleep worth a shit last night. I was an idiot and decided to take a hydrocodone at bedtime because I’d done that Monday night and slept pretty well (and also had some cool vivid dreams). It didn’t help at all, and finally around 3 am I laid back on the couch with a … Continue reading “5/28/08”

I didn’t sleep worth a shit last night. I was an idiot and decided to take a hydrocodone at bedtime because I’d done that Monday night and slept pretty well (and also had some cool vivid dreams). It didn’t help at all, and finally around 3 am I laid back on the couch with a bunch of pillows under my knees and though I didn’t sleep, I was comfortable enough to stay there for about an hour, and then when I got up, I was finally able to get semi-comfortable in the recliner and doze for a few hours.

I had my first post-op appointment today; poor Fred had to drive half an hour from work to come get me and then another 45 minutes to the plastic surgeon’s office; this living out in the country isn’t always the fun and games it appears to be.

During surgery, the plastic surgeon (or rather, I guess it was the anesthesiologist who actually did it) put a post-op pain control pump in. It was this one, and it was automatic and continual, and was expected to run about three days – basically, it pumped marcaine (from the same family as novocaine, I’m assuming) into my abdomen.

For the super-curious out there, Fred took a picture of me the day after surgery when the nurse was changing my dressing. I don’t think it’s terribly graphic, and after all, it’s a camera phone picture, but you can see what my front side looked like, here.

I didn’t have to do anything but find a place to put the pump, and since I was wearing a size 2X men’s button-up shirt, the pain pump (which looked like nothing so much as a baby bottle to me) ended up in the shirt pocket, and the drains (Jackson-Pratt Drains, two of them, one coming from each hip) ended up one pinned to either side of the front of my shirt.

The pain pump emptied about mid-day Monday and after that, it was nothing but a nuisance, always getting in the way, always popping out of the pocket, just a general pain in the ass, and I couldn’t wait to get rid of it. (I expected that as soon as the marcaine ran out, I’d be in excruciating pain, and while there was the occasional twinge, it wasn’t bad at all. In retrospect, though, Monday was my most uncomfortable day thus far in terms of feeling swollen and bloated, and I wonder if any of that had to do with the marcaine running out. It seems kind of obvious, doesn’t it?)

The drains weren’t annoying to me at all – when we got to the plastic surgeon’s office, the nurse said “Would you say that the worst part has been the drains?” and I said “The drains aren’t bad at all. It’s this damn PAIN PUMP and the horrible inability to sleep that’s killing me!”

I have been dreading, since the moment I woke up after surgery, having those drains removed. Fred, four years after his tummy tuck, will wax poetic on how horribly annoying and painful those drains were, and how much it hurt to have them removed and so on. And because I like to spend lots of time worrying and dreading, I’d been doing that, and you know what? It didn’t hurt at ALL to have the pain pump removed. It didn’t hurt at ALL to have the drain removed. I didn’t feel the removal of the pain pump at all, and just barely felt the drain being pulled out.

The nurse cleaned my incision, put antibiotic ointment on it, and showed Fred how to dress the incision line without using quite so much tape. Then they put my binder back on, and Fred and I were on our way.

I go back next Wednesday, presumably to get the other drain out. I still can’t drive, so I’m housebound for at least another week. I’m sure by this weekend I’ll be begging Fred to take me places to get out of the house. Wonder if I can convince him to go see Sex and the City? (HA.)

Bad thing: I can’t take a full shower ’til the other drain is out, so I’m still sponge-bathing and washing my hair in the sink. Bleh.

Today’s good things:

1. Now that the pain pump is gone and one drain is gone, I can pin the other drain to my binder and instead of wearing a men’s size XXL button-up shirt, which is what I’ve been wearing ever since I got home on Friday, I can wear a nightgown. The shirt was comfortable enough, but I felt like I was walking around with my ass hanging out, even though Fred assured me I wasn’t. Nightgown is much comfier.

2. Now that I have only the one drain, which will be tucked under my clothes, I don’t have to worry about the kittens puncturing anything and blood spurting all over the place.

3. Did I mention that I did not go one single day without seeing those kittens? Friday I went up to see them and had to stay in a chair because I couldn’t get on the floor. By Sunday I was getting down on the floor (very slowly and carefully). Now I’m back to seeing them as often as I want. Fred’s still taking care of the litter boxes (and btw, the kittens celebrated my surgery by starting to poo in the litter boxes because THEY ARE GENIUSES), but I’m taking care of everything else. I might have gone a wee bit overboard yesterday morning by crawling around on the floor with a hand vacuum in the foster kitten room. (DON’T LECTURE ME.)

4. I’m off hydrocodone completely and on a pain scale of 1 – 10, I’m at 1. If 1 is “no pain”. Is 1 “no pain”? Because it seems like zero would be “no pain.” I get the occasional twinge, but nothing worth bitching about – and given that I’ll bitch about anything, no matter how small, that’s saying something.

Someone asked if I was going to do a detailed entry about the surgery and recovery. I plan to do at least a brief overview of the surgery and recovery (let us all take a moment to guffaw at the idea that I could EVER be brief), and I think I’ll probably be up for getting that written over the weekend and you might expect that Monday.

Until Monday, I will likely keep posting occasional quick blog-type posts from my cell phone like I’ve been doing. Hopefully after Monday, the regular weekday posting schedule will resume.

Always on the verge of snapping. Never quite goes over the edge.

Giggling Zoe.

Tigger makes him guffaw.

Tons of (captionless) kitten pictures over at Flickr.



2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: No entry.
2003: Today I’m still burning with curiosity, and I wish I’d asked anyway.
2002: So yes, the vacation rocked.
2001: If vacation pictures aren’t your thing, I’ll see ya tomorrow.
2000: I’m so so SO glad to be home.