Sunday, 26 September 2010

Another set of holes

I'm back home having been released from Vascular Ward L5, Bay 1, Bed A on Saturday at around midday. I was glad to get out of a very strange place populated by odd men, mostly from Bury St. Edmunds it seemed, talking in broad Suffolk accents about their diabetes and the amputations of legs and toes they'd just suffered. So I was busy dry retching in the corner while the old boy opposite, Frank from Bishop's Stortford, "Oi'm 82!!" strained loudly to have a shit into a potty while lying on his bed, weird John from Bury screamed as the nurse applied a vacuum dressing to his recently amputated toes and Trevor, a belligerent ex-shop steward (trade union official) with seemingly very limited intelligence made his best attempt at fairly cruel banter to all three of us when not explaining how 35 years of mis-managing his diabetes had led to his leg being taken off below the knee, and then how he fell on the stump and had to come back in to get it fixed.

I guess in a sense this was a fascinating insight into both the broad swath of humanity out there but also into an area of medicine I'd never really encountered before, but it would have been nicer to have been around other people who'd had Upper GI surgery so the nurses were more attuned to my needs.

As Vicky has said it was pretty horrible but is getting better fairly rapidly day on day and I'm feeling less pain, less sickness, and am managing to eat a little more each day. I think it'll be ok. And I'm no longer refluxing, which is quite pleasant and at least showed the surgery did it's job.

...and as well as the long armpit to armpit clamshell scar and the four drain holes from transplant I am now the proud owner of another 5 scars in my stomach.

You will note where the chest wig ends just below the scar from transplant (not even visible now through the hair!) thanks to them shaving the operation area. Luckily I am like Esau, an hairy man, (Genesis 27:11 - look it up), which means I won't inherit the kingdom of God (only smooth skinned men appear to do that) but it does mean it'll grow back and the scars will disappear in the forest.

P.S. Thanks for all your lovely comments and support over the last few posts. And Jess, thanks for your reply on the CF forum too - if you had this done with CF lungs then I'm in serious admiration. I had a bit of sputum the few days after this even with tx lungs and coughing it up hurt! I've no idea how I'd have managed before tx.

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  1. Hi Will (and Vicky),
    I can't believe the rollercoaster ride you've both been on over the past few months. I don't know how you manage to get through every new event and still have the time and energy to write such an informative and detailed blog...maintaining an infectious and wicked sense of humour. I've been an avid reader of your blog.
    I hope Vicky is feeling a bit better?
    Will, you're the only person who could've gone through all this and still smile in the photo showing us your latest operation scars!!
    Sending bucketfuls of support down the M6.
    Sarah x

  2. That is quite a shag rug you have going to see you out and smiling, hope no more wretching, that is the worst....

  3. Sounds like it's going well, hope that continues. You look somewhat happier now given your "pre-match nerves". Hopefully Vicky's anxiety levels have also fallen, I'm sure she's not really nosocomephobic ...

    Quite an astute comment on trade unionists by the way ... Also if you shave it off does that give you inheritance or does Duncan Goodhew have that sewn up ? If he is the heir (sic - why is language like that ?!), is He the second coming ?

  4. You old Tory Justin! I wasn't making a comment about trade unionists in general, just about this one bloke - he's the only one I've ever met anyway.

  5. Don't knock the English language Justin - it's wonderful!In what other language could you say the same thing but meaning the opposite viz "out of this world" & "like nothing on earth"!!
    Will, I never had you down as a hairy chester! Sorry you've had a horrible time recently - Vicky too - you poor things, but know that my life is very concerned with catheters in all their complexity nowadays (on M's behalf) and although it can be grim it can also sometimes be hilarious!
    Loved the Exmoor photo - I want to go there.
    Claire x

  6. Sick of soup, yet? Presumably Vicky is now a dab hand at liquidising anything going with a bit of stock? I wonder if you could do cake soup, blended with sugar water?! Hope you're recovering well and soon get to move on to e.g. soup with chunky vegetables...