Wednesday, June 11, 2008

This Much Fun Should Be Illegal

Before I continue with this post, it should be noted that I was highly gassed for much of yesterday, which may or may not explain this next statement. And here goes: the hospital is so much fun, I would pay to go there, just like Disneyland. Oh wait, I do pay to go there. Through the teeth I pay, but I guess that’s just like Disneyland too. There are actually a lot of similarities.

The hospital has a little of everything. Rides (wheel chairs and beds), food (or a reasonable facsimile thereof) and lots of waiting. Imagine getting to the hospital at 5am only to be told the admitting office doesn’t open until 5:30am and that you won’t even be prepped for your procedure until 7:30am. Yep, if you are thinking that’s just ‘like a ride queue at Disneyland, you would be right sir. My favorite ride yesterday was Nurse Who I Couldn’t Understand’s Wild Bed Push.’ Not to throw around NASCAR terms, but I think my bed was a little on the tight side because it kept pushing coming out of the turns. This led to not one, not two, but three collisions with other patients’ beds. Fortunately two of the three were so heavily sedated they slept right through it, but I feel for the one we hit that wasn’t. It is not a pretty sight to see a post-op elderly woman jolted awake by her bed being hit. At least she was in the right place should cardiac resuscitation have been necessary. It probably didn’t help that I was laughing as we rolled through the halls. Though in my defense I was sedated and loopy too.

I probably don’t need to say this, but after the infamous emergency room nipple-shaving incident of December 2004, I’m a little leery when nurses approach me with sharp objects. I guess you could say I get a little ‘edgy’ about it? (The fun may be gone, but the pun is here to stay). Yesterday was no different. The nurse told me she was going to shave me and then her BIC razor wannabe started buzzing. This made me even more tense. I thought I was remaining cool and calm as the she prepared to shave me, but I forgot that I was hooked up to monitors that reveal everything going on with me short of hiccupping, so everyone knew I was having major razor-induced anxiety. I had visions going through my head of my skin getting snagged and chewed up by this nurse’s automatic razor, but fortunately my nipples remain unscathed. And I can now cross that phrase off the lists of things I never thought I’d get to say…

The worst part about the shave thing is that just like any thorough, caring and dedicated professional, the hospital only does what it needs to. This means that since my cardioversion patch had to be placed on the left side of my chest, that’s the only side they shaved. Now, one side of my chest looks like a European Olympic swimmer’s (or a 4-year-old’s) chest, which comparatively makes my untouched right side look like Sean Connery’s or Austin Power’s’ss’s’s’. (I guess that last part would translate better in a podcast as opposed to writing. Just picture me saying Powers’s’s’s’s’s in a Dr. Evil voice with the whole dainty teacup-holding pinky finger next to my mouth). And it gets better. Since I had to be shocked 3 times (that third one REALLY IS a charm), my skin is burned from the adhesive medical sticky and electricity transmitting pads placed on my chest and back. So, now not only is half of my chest freshly shaven, but I have a large egg-shaped burn line that makes it appear as though the world’s largest big-mouth bass gave me a hickey. Oh boy, now I get to cross that phrase off of my things I never thought I’d get to say list. Wow, two in one day. I’d better slow down. I’m supposed to take it easy for a few days.

Sadly, my cardiologist, who I adore, has given me a new nickname: The Horse. Let’s just say that I have never reacted well to anesthesia and this time was no different. For whatever reason, from the moment I went under, through the shocky shocky and until I woke up, I was lifting and then slamming my left foot down on my bed. I was informed that right after the procedure my doctor asked if I was having a seizure. Hey, procedure and seizure! That rhymes in a lovely Suessian way. But it makes me wonder if everyone just left me laying in the corner as the freak who likes to bang his legs in his sleep and whenever another hospital employee asks about it, the nurses just replied with ‘just ignore him, he’s been doing that for 20 minutes.’ Perhaps that’s why everyone was staring at me when I finally woke up, which I have to admit was a pretty freaky moment. The recovery ward I was placed in was full of old folks who had just had cataract surgeries, so all I saw was at bunch of people with one eye looking in my direction. When you wake up and are pretty groggy, that’s not a welcoming sight. It was like I was in the twilight zone and I was the freak because I was the only one with two eyes.

So, I can now add counting with my foot like a horse to the list of my reactions to anesthesia, which already includes asking out doctors and nurses, offering to buy a meat dinner for my doctor even though the meat is considered sacred to that doctor, singing disco tunes and offering to buy a round of drinks for everyone in the room. I have never been drunk, but can’t help thinking that I’d make a fun one. Kinda like Otis on The Andy Griffith Show. I also bit my toungue during the lurch after being shocked, so I now speak with a lisp. It’s a pretty good chunk off the side of my tongue. As long as I don’t eat salt, I shouldn’t hurt too much more than it already does. The tongue must be really important, not like the appendix or metatarsal bone (I’ll admit I have no idea where that bone is, but saying it instantly makes you appear smarter. Seriously, try it) because it sure is hard to talk with a little piece of it missing.

But in the end, I really can’t complain. My heart rhythm is back to the normal and boring beat, beat, beat which means that although it’s no longer playing The Hustle, it’s working correctly. And as if it couldn’t get any better and I couldn’t ask for more from life, I got a call from Lucy and Ethel last night who are vacation along the Central California coast with my parents. I guess they found a farm nearby that they have been visiting every day because (and make sure you are sitting down when you read this) Lucy and Ethel can feed the COWS there. Yep, my daughters, the lights of my life, are directly contributing to the process of making cheese. In fact, they are assisting with the first phase in the long series of phases necessary to making cheese. And yes, it made me cry, but just a little. It’s cheesy, I know.

That’s really all I can remember from my Hospital Land adventure so I’ll wrap this post up. Though from what I am hearing, there apparently is a pretty good chance that I may have signed my house over to the anesthesiologist because I was so pleased with his efforts. Let’s just hope I didn’t sign anything to make it official. I promise I’ll be back to the regular blogging subject faire tomorrow, assuming of course I have a home and computer from which to write it…

20 comments:

AndreAnna said...

OMG, the image of waking up in a recovery room of one-eyed elderly people made me literally laugh out loud.

Glad you;re okay!

cmk said...

SO glad you are fine and that you didn't have your sense of humor removed! (Yeah, I know, VERY old and VERY lame.) As far as drugs: I THINK I am a whole lot of fun when I'm on Demerol. I just am not too sure, because I remember NOTHING from when I have it coursing through my veins. But I'm SURE I was fun! :)

Eva said...

Let us not speak of the Nipple Shaving Incident of '04 ever again. It's giving me the heebie jeebies just thinking about it.

I am so glad that you and your nipples escaped relatively unscathed. Now all you have to do is watch your left boob hair catch up with the right boob hair! Wheee! It does not get any better than this, folks. Good times!

Heart Of Darkness said...

So, basically, a few days ago, if someone would place their ear to your chest they'd hear The Hustle? Or, more likely, not at all, because if half your chest looks like Sean Connery's, then when you're not shaved, you must look like a Wookie. :)

(see, I can made scifi references!)


I burst out laughing on the foot-counting thing, and yes, you'd definitively make a fun drunk, because they say being drunk and being under anesthesia is pretty much the same.


Thanks, you made my day!

Janna said...

Dude, your metatarsal bone is in your foot.
Probably the bone you kept banging against the bed.

Odat said...

LMAO....I hate to admit it but you DO sound like you had fun there. I really think you ought to shave the other half of your chest and have a large mouth bass give you a hickey on that side. That way, all will be even. Just sayin.
Peace

citizen of the world said...

Good Lord. That's a funny post, but what a thing to have gone through. I hope you are up and feeling better soon.

Terri said...

you have a such a colorful way of explaining your schtuff - love it. Glad everything turned out okay Ed (didn't he stamp his feet alot while he was talking?).

okiesister said...

Glad you pulled through unscathed. Making light of these anxious moments in life helps us cope with the hibby jibbies of it all.

Patti said...

So happy you are in one piece, nipples and all. That unfortunate shaving incident is apparently seared into many of your readers' memories, including mine.

You had me laughing out loud here.

And Lucy and Ethel being at the start of the cheese-making process. It's too much.
;-)

magickat said...

Well I believe I am reading things late and, unfortunately fopr you, I am reading things backwards so I think you will be getting progressively sicker as I catch up with your blog. Luckily that is only in the web world. I hope in the real world that you are actually getting better.

Please thank Lucy and Ethel for my future cheese intake.

Amy said...

Michael, I have to say, that was probably one of your funniest posts ever. I laughed loud, at 7:30, before coffee!!

One eyed old people...creepy!

Glad you came out alright. I always puke when I get put under...at least you didn't do that.

Glad your girls are enjoying the cheese process...just wait until Tillamook!

Thanks for you comment on my blog...it really made my evening! Hope it wasn't the drugs talking! : )

Glad you're back!

On a limb with Claudia said...

I am absolutely delighted that you get to spend a bit more time with us. Hurray for health. ((hug)) for continuing growth and a healing heart.

There's so much myth and mythology about the heart. I can't help but wonder what broke your heart and what else needs to heal.

Mel Heth said...

Yeay! I didn't think you'd post for at least a few more days. So glad your heart, heel and nipples came through okay. And I loved your Twilight Zone analogy. It would've been awesome if one of those pig-faced nurses had walked in on you...

silverneurotic said...

I'm glad the procedure went well...

Romie said...

Thank you for taking the time yet again to make me laugh so hard I had to pee. LOVE it!

Selma said...

Thank goodness you're OK. I am very impressed you can count like a horse. You just never know when it will come in handy. Take it easy.

Michele said...

Hmmm... a burn mark huh? Perhaps you caught on fire after all?

btw I assure you the nurses did say, ‘just ignore him, he’s been doing that for 20 minutes.’ Just sayin...

Anyhoo, glad you and your nipple made it out safely and you are back to your normal beats. :)

Oh and comparing hospitals to Disneyland? I like that idea, maybe I'll think of my MRI wed, as a long ride at Disneyland!

chefmom said...

I am in tears aftering reading this post. You make something so not fun sound like it's a comedy sketch. and your list of things you'd never get to say, but can now cross of your list just gets funnier and funnier. I was laughing outloud....foruntely my nipples remained unscathed. TO FUNNY!!

meleah rebeccah said...

This is a freaking SITCOM episode. I am crying laughing out loud hysterical.

RELIVED that you are well.

And even more relived your gift for story telling was unharmed!!