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21 August 2010 @ 10:36 pm
Sort of a rant.  
 So, surgery, even minor surgery, is more exhausting than I ever knew.  The last three days have been a learning experience for me, to say the least.  
 
The kidney valve surgery I had when I was five is a dim memory of lying in a hospital bed for so many days, I couldn't count them at the time.  I'm sure it was awful and I spent those first days mostly sleeping, but I just don't remember some thirty *cough* years later.  

I knew going into this I'd probably feel kinda under the weather for a couple of days.  But I figured by the weekend, I'd be mostly fine.  I mean, it's just an outpatient thing.  They cut out a polyp, send me home, and it takes a day or two for the bleeding to stop.  Like my wisdom teeth, right?  Well, sort of.  They sent me home, and I've been spitting out blood ever since.  First it gushed out my nose and filled gauze pads.  Now it just drips down my throat.  Mostly.  Sure, it's slowed lots, but there are moments when I don't think I'll ever stop tasting blood, and worse, the faintly rotting taste of old blood I wake up to every morning.  Blech.  

And then there's how completely without energy I am.  I wake up.  I have brief hours wherein I feel capable of doing something like, oh, pick up dishes, or clean the cat litter box, or sit down and eat something.  Whatever I choose to do saps all that momentary strength from me, and all I want to do is sleep.  I can actually feel the world narrowing when this happens, it's the strangest sensation.  I'll start feeling light headed, and get a headache, and sometimes a low grade fever to go with, and I know I need to go take a nap.  If I don't, I just start feeling worse and worse, until I don't have a choice.  So I sleep for a couple of hours.  Rinse and repeat, until bed time.  

I have so many things I'd love to be doing.  I could be writing, or sewing.  But no.  I have neither the energy nor concentration to do either.  I drove a short ten minutes into town yesterday, and it literally exhausted me; I had to turn around and come right back home.  On Thursday, there was homework I had to do - no choice, as it was due by midnight.  Now, I not only do my homework (which I was smart enough to do during one of those brief moments of almost-energy), but I also edit discussions for a friend who is dyslexic and attending online courses.  Hers were also due Thursday, but because of appointments and things all day, she wasn't home to write hers until about 9:00pm.  By 8:30, I was light headed and ready for bed.  By 9:00, I was refreshing my e-mail every thirty seconds, mentally willing her to send the dang things.  Realize, these aren't intensive work.  It's two-four paragraphs of me making sure her words are spelled correctly and her commas are in place.  Usually it takes me less than five minutes to do both discussions for her.  By the time I got them on Thursday, I was only staying upright by sheer stubborn determination.  At 9:30, Mark came upstairs from teaching class and started just sort of chatting at me about it; he was in a good mood and just talking, the sort of thing I might half listen to on a normal night and go "Mm-hm" at appropriate intervals.  This time, I was on the last two sentences of editing my friend's work.  Mark started talking, and I literally could not read them, much less edit.  I finally just looked at him and said "Honey, I'm glad you had a great class, really.  But it is everything I can do to focus on just one thing right now.  Just one.  Please stop talking so I can finish this last sentence."  I couldn't even tune him out.  As someone who routinely does just that when in the throes of writing, it was extremely disconcerting to find myself completely unable to do so.  

Then, of course, he had to poke at me and make fun for a couple minutes before wandering away.  I was in bed going to sleep less than five minutes later.   

Tonight, I am better than that.  I couldn't have posted to LJ before, I don't think.  Not like this.  But tonight, I can, so that is a small victory.  I went over to a friend's today, and sat in a chair sipping tea for four hours.  It was an hour and a half too long.  I felt it start to hit me, but I was feeling mutinous and didn't want to go home just to return to my sick bed.  So I stayed, and ended up having to call someone as I drove myself home, so I'd be sure to keep awake and aware.  

It's only been three days, and already I am tired of this recovery nonsense.  I'm tired of not having the energy to go to the grocery store, or cook, or write, or sew, or do anything but read, watch TV, and sleep.  I am tired of spitting blood and trying not to breath through my nose, even though it's clear, and therefore natural feeling to do so.  I am apparently a grumpy convalescent.  

I think the worst part isn't not doing the things I want.  It's feeling incapable of doing them.  I don't like that at all.  

And I am starting to feel a headache coming on.  Time to go off to bed.  Again.  *sigh*   
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Current Mood: discontentdiscontent
 
 
 
Miss Crankypants: Audrey Breakfast at Tiffany's Sleepingaka_paloma on August 22nd, 2010 06:09 am (UTC)
Aw, just rest. I know that's probably not what you want to hear, but sleep as much as you can so your body can heal itself after the surgery. And if you're asleep, you'll be too busy, ah, sleeping to pay any mind to how bored and frustrated you are because you don't have the energy reserves to accomplish what you normally do. I know, I know. That's easier said than done. Maybe you'll turn the corner in a day or two and you'll be able to be more active. Hang in there!
rhienellethrhienelleth on August 22nd, 2010 08:20 pm (UTC)
You're right, I know. It's just really humbling, this post surgery weakness/exhaustion/inability to focus. I slept for nine hours last night, got up, showered, and was suddenly so tired again I laid back down for three more hours.

I do seem to be lasting a bit longer now, though, so maybe it was worth it.
patron saint of neglected female characters: bear hugrose_griffes on August 22nd, 2010 09:03 pm (UTC)
Anything involving anesthesia is really taxing on the body. I missed a week of work when I had my appendix removed, and the next week I sat in my chair while "teaching" and took a nap during my planning period every single day. And I was only under for a couple of hours and my scar was less than two inches long. (Though yeah, having an infected appendix for a day or two before getting it removed is also taxing on the body.)

Bleh, though. Sorry it's been so frustrating.