TEMS Day

posted in: Cancer and faith 0

Picolax may have kept me busy last night but I still need an enema. As long as it works I don’t care.

9.30 Feeling really hungry. Hospital stockings on, haven’t bothered with gown yet. The first one had no ties. Nor the second. NHS humour?

10.30. Blood sugar at 4.2. Feel weak and have a headache – probably dehydrated.

Went up to 4.6 by 10.55! They put me on a drip and it went up to 7.

I apologise in advance to the nurse that I am likely to throw up a lot after anaesthetic.

I’m still waiting, desperately hungry. It’s lunch time. They don’t know when I’ll get my op – there’s been an emergency. I know the other patient needs that slot more than I do. As I complain inwardly (I am sooo hungry) I try to remember how serious their case must be and to pray for them.

Finally it’s my turn. They want me to walk to the operating theatre. Sorry, I really can’t – it would be a major achievement to stand up after all these hours without food. I feel so weak and I have horrible gnawing stomach pains.

A kind nurse offers to wheel me to the theatre in a chair since there’s no trolley. It’s a long way. I’m glad I didn’t attempt to walk, trying to hold my drip and my dressing gown around me :-).

Nurse has to go. Nothing happens. I am transferred to a trolley. And left. Someone draws a curtain around me and I wait. Desperate for news. For food! For a human being to show me I haven’t been forgotten. Nothing happens. I manage to pull the curtain back a bit – I want to make it more difficult for them to ignore me. I move my feet a bit (they’re sticking out at the end of the curtain) so that people realise I’m alive. I think the receptionist may realise what I’m doing. She says she’ll find out what’s happening. I am so desperate for food and feeling so weak and sick that I’m losing the plot.

It’s been a 6 hour delay on the back of fasting.

Most people can deal with anaesthetic with a degree of decorum – me, not so much. Nausea and vomiting would be the key words.

Someone comes and goes through the forms again, checking I’m me, address etc. I am getting weaker and weaker and have to try hard not to scream at yet more (no doubt absolutely necessary) questions.

Off the medical type goes.

More waiting. I can’t hold back the tears. This is cruel. I manage to cry quietly. I pray incoherently, just keep saying in my head ‘Lord Jesus I know you’re here. Please help me to remember that, please help me to get through this. Tomorrow this will just be a horrible memory but right now it’s really bad. Please help me to get through this. I’m scared and it hurts’ as my stomach seems intent on digesting itself in desperation.

Finally someone comes and wheels me off to theatre. More questions… ‘Please just anaesthetise me!’ I plead inwardly. I ask the anaesthetist to give me something for sickness and to hook up the drip, thank him and wait for oblivion.

Some hours later I’m back on the ward, feeling okay in between throwing up but far less sick than I usually get. Prof arrives. It’s 98% likely the lesion was benign 🙂 so they cut a circle around it and sewed it up internally. Very clever stuff. They’ll send the polyp to histology just to double check and do a sigmoidoscopy in 3 months then if all’s well it’ll just be a colonoscopy in a year.

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