Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Reflection Following Surgery

It is over. The gall bladder is out! And I thank God that it is gone. Do I regret going through the surgery? No for a moment. It is nice not having that nagging pain that would never go over. Now I recover from the surgery. It is hard to remember that they removed an organ from my body. After all, I have only 4 holes to show for it - three on the right side of my chest/abdomen and one over my belly button. The one over the belly button is where they took the bladder out through. That is just a little weird, if you ask me. I look back on Monday and wonder what happened. It was a strange day - the weather was changing from 90 on Sunday to 40's on Monday. The sky was gray and foreboding. The wind was raw. And I waited all morning. It was a long night, as it always is when you are waiting for something. I think about the words of the Lord, "Be still and know that I am God." And it was hard being still. (It still is.) I felt more like the words of the Psalmist, "More than watchmen wait for the morning, yes, more than watchmen wait for the morning." I was waiting for morning and even after getting up, I still waited. Waiting is the hardest thing. Finally we arrived at the hospital at 11. I was nervous as a long tail cat in a room full of rocking chairs. I sat but just barely. I wanted to pace. I was getting more nervous by the minute. Penny held my hand, knew my nerves and calmed me. Thank God for Penny. She is a rock in my swamp of nerves. Checking in was easy as we were preregistered. Finally the call came "Mitchel." Out of my chair in a flash I walked to the man who called my name. He checked the armband to make sure it was me, asked my date of birth, as if anyone else would show up to have their gall bladder taken out instead of me. I laughed (only to myself). And we were off. I was aghast. The one thing I needed I hadn't gotten - a kiss from Penny. My nerves got me out of the chair before I was thinking. I looked back and wished for one. Soon. Taking me back to the preop room, he went through the details of what was going to happen, laid out my robe, my booties (the most expensive cheap slippers I would ever have- chuckle appropriately) and left me to change. After changing, bagging up my clothes, I laid on the gurney. Prayers, prayers and more prayers. I sang a few hymns. Recited a few Psalms. Understood why I was making the 7/8 grade learn those passages from Scripture - they were right there in my head as the nerves were overwhelming me. Lord, hold me, was my cry. Jesus, Savior, pilot me, for the sea was really tempestuous at the moment. Finally, the nurse came in to start the IV. The man from anesthesia showed up. I wished for Penny to be there. Told him I was highly anxious. (Didn't tell him I was ready to bolt from there except I didn't have any clothes on at the moment, just that flimsy robe which would not cover much if I was to get up.) Asked for my wife (who at that moment was asking to come back as well). There was Penny and things calmed down again. The "I don't care" drug was taking effect. I felt better, less nervous...yeah, right. That wasn't true. I was still nervous, just felt more secure. God has sent me His angel in the form of my wife. Thank You God. And then it was time. They didn't wait till 1. They took me early. One final kiss and hug and I was off. Rolling along. Where to? Around the corner, past the obstacle course of stuff and then into a room. It looked like an operating room. Do I really want to do this? Is it really necessary? Lord, help me. Lord be with me. The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want... The mask over the face. Breath deeply. This will be cold as we put the patches on you. Big mask over the face. People moving all over. Seemed rushed. Hurry. Put it here. It will be cold. Who cares, just do it. Cold again. Yeah, so. Breath. OK. Now I am going to give you something to put you out. When you wake up... To be continued.

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