This morning it was as if a cloud lifted from my aura.
After drinking the last of the gallon of GoFastJuice ten minutes shy of the 10:00 a.m. deadline yesterday morning and surviving all of the tempestuous food commercials the night before, my colon is clean.
No sign of recurrence of the cancer nor progressive disease. What the heck the PET scan saw, I don’t know. My co-worker and friend, Jenny may be more relieved than I am! All of my fifth floor friends were happy for me and the great results. What a great feeling to have not only the prayers of my family but so many of my friends, too.
While the nurse was going over prior surgical history (before the colonoscopy), I realized how lucky I have been. She asked about previous surgical history. Okay, I’ve had a lot of surgeries and sutures from head to toes, nothing serious aside from the colon episode. I had insurance and a lot of sick time.
My hands have each had two surgical procedures. Carpal tunnel release on each hand – years apart. The right hand first – after finally coming to terms that braces at night and magnetic wraps during the day and a lot of non-prescription anti inflammatory/pain relievers were no longer doing the trick – I had the surgery.
Almost instant relief. At the time, I was still a late blooming college student. A paper was due. Pressing the keyboard to finish a paper post-op was no problem. Had I known how much better my hand/wrist would improve perhaps I would have had the surgery sooner. The relief was short lived. Surgery was a success.
BUT the dog, sleeping on my lap, may have been dreaming of a nice juicy bone when he latched onto my right thumb and shook it violently. Not good. Especially since it looked like the rip went as deep as the bone. It didn’t hurt. Really not good. Probably ripped the nerve in addition to the flesh.
The emergency room visit was mostly to get an updated tetnus shot. I knew surgery was going to be required, the wound was nasty. But didn’t hurt. The same surgeon who repaired the carpal tunnel worked magic on the thumb. As it turned out, the nerve was not severed, only contused (bruised) the surgeon saw the tooth imprint on the nerve. He did such a great job on the jagged tear. The repair scar is barely visible. He said I’m a good healer. I say he’s a good surgeon.
Several years later, the left carpal tunnel upped its pain. Knowing what a difference a surgery can make, once again I had the same surgeon release the left hand/wrist. Just as good. I am not making this up.
I lost track of the actual dates of all my surgical procedures;suffice it to say I had a few good years with the left hand. Last year, (May, 2014), one of the dogs got out of the yard. Either the lawn people or the pool guy didn’t latch the gate when their job was done. This was the old dog with cataracts who was afraid of everything.She was running scared. Or trying to commit suicide.
The landlord recognized the dog, Sasha, and did his best to chase her down. And across the six lanes of traffic in front of the house. Around the hospital campus. Across the street again. And again. When he called to see when I would be home, he was worn out. But continued the chase in his car.
Scared as Sasha was, she was able to out smart and out maneuver the manic driver screaming and hollering her name with a heavy Columbian accent. She didn’t speak Spanish. She was not getting in the car with a strange stranger. She knew better. But she was cornered. And scared beyond belief.
When I finally arrived on the scene other motorists were now involved. Some got close but Sasha was having none of this being captured crap. She finally stopped running when she heard my voice. But ever the independent bitch that she was, wouldn’t come on command.
I sweet talked and tried to calm her down. Still she stood her ground. So, I lunged and grabbed her successfully. Carried her to my waiting car and put her in the back seat. That’s when I knew for sure that she either bit me when she snapped as I grabbed or I scraped my left pinky across her canine tooth or the S hook securing her tag to her collar.
Yep, I left a blood trail. There was nothing to be found in my car to wrap the finger in an attempt to stop the bleeding. The landlord’s wife – who was in her car chasing the illusive dog too, handed me a packet of tissues. It helped a bit. Let me say the capture went down in the parking lot of the hospital across the street from the house.
It was a short ride home. Sasha was relieved that her adventure was over and maybe thankful her suicide attempt failed. Jackson was beyond happy to see her.
Meanwhile, I was loosing a little blood. Again, it appeared that the bone was visible. Crap. Once again, it didn’t hurt. It did need attention that I was not able to handle on my own.
Thom was home, about a mile away. I called and asked him if he could come help me with something. Good son that he is, he arrived quickly.
(The last time we had a dog chase, both of the dogs were on the run. A week after they had their annual $$$ visit to the vet. We, (Thom, Leslie, who was living with us while she did an internship in Miami, and me) captured Sasha. Jackson, the stupid little yappy one was taken to the police station holding cell. Waiting for animal control or bail bondsman-Thom. Whoever got there first. It was Thom.)
Thom found me pale sitting at the kitchen table. “First, give Sasha a baby aspirin.” He did. “Now, this is gross. Take a look and tell me if you think I need stitches.”
He looked. “Mom, there is nothing here that can take care of this.”
We agreed on that. He drove me across the street to the emergency room. Just as I thought. Not much they could do but give me a tetnus shot, clean it up, write a prescription for antibiotics and refer me to a hand surgeon. Just so happens, I knew one.
About a week later, “my” trusy hand surgeon performed a skin graft. In our scuffle, Sasha’s tooth or collar caused enough damage to the finger, there was not enough there to sew closed. A piece of skin from the outer edge of my palm about a finger length below the damage, was removed. That surgical wound was sutured closed. The patch of skin was then “grafted” with more sutures over the wound, just above the base of the pinky, below the last knuckle crease (palm side). Both healed okay.
Always in search of either a positive spin to a situation or comic relief. It was thoughts of my four hand surgical procedures and how bizarre two of them were that kept me from worrying about what could be going on in my colon the last few minutes before the anesthesia put me out.
When I was fully awake afterward, I wasn’t sure if I really heard someone say that is was over and everything is fine. Or if I may have imagined it. Why do they even talk to the patient in that stage between oblivion and consciousness? As it turned out, some one had really told me it was all good. I even have pictures!
This morning, everything was bright again. Blue Belle has a new rear tube and it was a great day to take her to the train station. She was perfectly fine at the end of the day when I unchained her from the
We rode home. Got the mail. Another chance to win Publisher’s Clearing House. Double. Instead of five thousand dollars a week for life, it’s ten thousand! I feel lucky. Of course I completed the process and have it ready to return. Imagine!