Nurse Becky and the Hernia

Last week my husband had surgery for a double hernia. I’m not sure exactly what that means, but he had 3 incisions when it was all over. I am sure, however, that having surgery means giving a man license to turn into a sissy baby – we all know that men in general make the worst patients ever! I’m surprised my husband could even use the remote. I have had major back surgery and two children (14 hours of labor each) and never fussed this much. Thankfully, I only rarely have to play “Nurse Becky” - the kind, patient, do anything for you person since that is SO NOT ME.

Here’s how the day went:

9:30 a.m. Must be at outpatient surgery center waiting room.

10:30 a.m. Still waiting to be called. Mike is impatient, swears they are calling up people that came in after us, and goes up to the desk to inquire. They tell him to sit down. He has been fasting since the night before, so now he is STARVING. (I have peanut butter cups in my purse for me). Regis and Kelly are on the TV without sound and I think I like them better that way.

11:15 a.m. They call his name and tell me to stay where I am – they are taking him back for pre-op stuff.

11:45 a.m. They come and get me. Mike is in a really ugly grey mini check patterned hospital gown. He has an IV he says took the nurse 4 tries to get in. It’s OK however since the nurse, Candy, is perky and pretty. Thank God. And yes, her name was really Candy. He has blue footies on his feet and a wristband to remind him who he is.

12:00p.m. Mike’s spots his surgeon leaning against the nurse’s station gabbing away with another doctor. He says “I don’t like that – shouldn’t he be studying my case or reading up on it? Why is he standing there talking?” I remind him the doctor has probably done this a million times, but that doesn’t reassure him. All this and he has had no drugs yet.

12:30 p.m. Mike’s surgical nurse Kelly comes over, asks a long slate of questions and tells us she will send over the anesthesiologist. She says the delay is because they have to clean the operating room. Mike wonders what has happened in there – like did someone explode or something?

12:45 p.m. The anesthesiologist arrives, asks the same questions and tells us it will all begin soon. The surgeon stops gabbing and joins us, asks the SAME questions again and tells us a few post op things like Mike will get a prescription for Vicodin and he can take all he wants. The surgeon tells him they will shave him and he is completely alarmed. They also tell him not to shower for 3 days. Just what he needs – a license not to shower.

1:15 p.m. They finally wheel him away and I am told to go to the main lobby and wait. They tell me to check in at the desk. After a myriad of hallways and elevators, I find the main lobby, mostly since I see the signs for the gift shop. I check in and the volunteer person gives me a pager so they can notify me when the doctor calls after the surgery. Reminds me of the Outback and THAT reminds me how hungry I am.

1:17 p.m. I am in the gift shop – love these places. They usually have some interesting gifts and tons of candy and snacks. I buy a Baby Ruth and go to take a seat in the lobby. The lobby is very crowded and very noisy BUT they have a popcorn making machine that is popping FRESH popcorn and is manned by an elderly volunteer. A bag is $1.00 and of course I need one of these. The reading material in the lobby is so old – my “Better Homes and Gardens” magazine was from May 2008.

3:15 p.m. My pager goes off. I mean this thing beeps and squawks and lights up and I think – my Bloomin Onion must be ready! Oh wait, I am not at the Outback. Then of course I spill my popcorn. I go to the desk and the surgeon is on the phone and tells me all is well, Mike is in recovery. He says they will page me again when they are ready for me to go down. I start to wonder who has to clean up all the spilled popcorn in the lobby and am SO glad it is not me.

4:00 p.m. I am paged again and this time only my Diet Pepsi jumps with me. I go to recovery and there is Mike!! (First I go to the wrong cubicle since all I can see are feet sticking out and of course they are all wearing the same sox – that was a little weird). Mike is doing well, only a tiny bit groggy and he is downing a Coke. He says he is OK and did I know they have REAL COKE? The recovery room nurse, Aileen, pops in and shows him how to work the TV. 24 HOUR ESPN EVEN IN THE HOSPITAL. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I try to steer him to Oprah but she is doing a show on male menopause and he refuses to watch it. (Actually, I made that last part up just to entertain you and me).

4:45 p.m. Aileen returns, asks him to sit in the chair in the room. He accomplishes this with only a bit of groaning. She is encouraging and eventually helps him to get dressed and releases him. After paying a whopping $8.00 for PARKING, we are on our way.

5:20 p.m. We arrive home and Mike goes straight to his recliner and turns on, yes, yes, you guessed it - ESPN. Don’t they ever get tired of this stuff??

5:30 p.m. He is so hungry, so I make him a chicken sandwich when what he really wants is ice cream.

UPDATE: Other than a bit of nausea, he has been doing great, and it only took a couple of days of me playing Nurse Becky to get through this. He should be back to “normal” soon – whatever that is. At least he eventually could take a shower.

UPDATE #2: Today Mike tells me he feels nauseous and might throw up – I think he is just trying to buy another day of good will from Nurse Becky


Sherry said...

You really should be writing novels! I would buy them in a heartbeat. You are sooooo funny, I love reading your blog! Can't wait to see you Nurse Becky.

BECKY B. said...

Sherry, thank you so much for the nice comment on the website. I love the fact people are enjoying it! Talk to you soon. -Becky