Monday, March 19, 2007

What's this black box on my desk?

Oh yeah, it's a computer... It's been so long since I've seen my computer, I almost forgot what it was. Not really. I'm just being obnoxious.

Surgery on Wednesday went pretty well. It took almost exactly four hours. The doctor removed Ma's bladder and all the things that are involved when a person has a hysterectomy. He also took some lymph nodes from the surrounding area in order to see if the cancer got out into the rest of her system. Back in 2002 when she had breast cancer, a few of the lymph nodes had cancer in them, thus necessitating the need for systemic chemotherapy. Pastor was there pretty much the entire time with us, so that was a comfort. When the volunteer at the desk in the surgical waiting room area came over and told us the doctor was going to be up soon to speak with us, Pastor accompanied us to the conference room where the doctor likes to speak with the family.

When the doctor got to the conference room, Pastor, Oldest Brother (Yeah, he came), Other Brother, Sis, BiL, YS, and I were kind of crammed in there. The room was not very big. Pastor and the doctor stood at the door while the rest of us were in the room. I was standing in the far corner while the doctor told us what happened. After he was done with his schpiel, I asked a question. Everyone turned and looked at me like, "Where did she come up with that question?" But, the doctor answered me. Then, I launched into another question, which also met with a detailed response. I laugh now, because every time I asked a question, all my sibs, Pastor, and the doctor would turn to look at me. But basically, a lot was left up in the air because the answers depend on the pathology reports. I'm glad I had done a bunch of research about bladder cancer because I was able to ask the questions that my siblings weren't able to, but were glad I did.

Anyway, Ma had to stay in recovery for a while longer than expected because her blood pressure dropped due to the anesthesia. Nothing too serious; they just wanted to keep an eye on her. She's not been a very good patient because she's confused and really ready to leave. She ripped out her NG (Naso Gastric) tube, her epidural (for the pain) and an IV. I'm hoping that it's just the anesthesia still messing her up. She's had some cognitive decline in the past few years, but this is really a marked change.

After the surgery on Wednesday, I went home and went to bed so I could get up early and drive to CPE town on Thursday morning and do my thing. I was on call Thursday night as usual, and I was really busy. It was an exhausting and challenging night, that didn't really end until about 10:00 a.m. Friday morning. I cleaned up and went to my hospital (The hospital where I do my CPE has two campuses that are about 2 1/2 miles apart) where I relinquished the pager to one of the staff chaplains. The spiritual care manager (not supa) asked if I was going to leave early. I said no. Then the staff chaplain had a conversation with me and suggested I go. I went up to my floor for a quick minute and decided I really did need to leave because I was just exhausted. So, I went home again, in order to visit Ma and do some things the sibs and I planned to do this weekend.

So, this weekend was busy because we did a bunch of house cleaning/repair, visiting Ma, asking questions to the medical people, and processing what was happening to our mother. I came back to Seminary last night and had a tough time staying awake for the last hour or so of the drive. Next time I think I will stay home and then leave early in the morning. It was rough.

On a positive note, though, Howard remembers me. He has his top two front teeth and he's adorable. I did a trick for him where I put my head back and put a tissue on my face and blew it up in the air. He laughed hysterically. I did that for about 10 minutes and BiL and Sis taped it. He laughed hard every time I did it. Then, the next day, I folded a tissue into a diagonal and hung it on my glasses like it was a doctor's mask. He laughed at that, too. He's an awesome kid and I love him so darn much.

Ok, so that's what I did. Thank you all for the prayers, thoughts, and kind words. I appreciate you more than I probably make known. Later

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