Sunday, August 20, 2006

Big Chunk O' Me, Part III: Giving My Pound of Flesh

If you never read part 1 or part 2, you probably won't want to read this part either.

So. Surgery Day. Get up, drive to the hospital with my wife blah blah, check in, blah blah, johnny shirt blah blah, sit and wait, blah blah... time to go for surgery.

Lie on the stretcher in the hall for, like, an hour, finally into the operating room, chat for a few minutes, they do stuff, and... poof.

Next thing I know, I'm in the recovery room. HOURS later. (For a better recap of the day, read my wife's e-mail to our family and friends, which she posted to her blog on the 2nd anniversary of the surgery.) I hang around in recovery for quite a while. I see and hear Corinna roll in some time later, but we don't interact much because she's pretty out of it. When they roll me down the hall towards my room, the first face I see is my father's, quickly followed by my wife's, my oldest daughter's, and my mother's. All of which were awfully nice to see.

However, and this is another life lesson I learned the hard way: You're never too sick to be a b*stard. Later on in the evening, I was lying in bed, bloated and strange. My dear wife was there with me. She starts to wash blood off my back or something like that, and I come out with this gem: "I just want you to be my wife, not my nurse!". Nice, eh? Of *course* it hurt her feelings. After all she had been through, she was trying to give me comfort in the best way she knew how, and I blew her off. I swear, that's the *one* moment in this entire process that I wish I could go back and change. Still makes me mad at myself.

Strangely enough, this wasn't the kind of event where someone is cracking off lots of pictures to commemorate the occasion. Here's the one recorded image from the whole day- a photo of me talking to my kids post surgery:



Was my freakishly huge hand a result of the anaesthetic, or just a trick of the camera? I'll leave that to you to decide. And, while the picture doesn't really give it away, I was shocked the next morning when I looked at myself and saw how bloated I was. My whole head looked like a baby's butt -- no creases at all! Luckily, I soon settled back from my new "baby's butt" look to my regular "horse's a$$" look.

Of course, one kidney short.

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Come on back now, y'hear? There's only one more of these left in me, I think. Let's call it "the aftermath." Unless I think of something funny to call it between now and then.

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