Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Can a procedure change your outlook of life?

It is said that doctors and caregivers make lousy patients. Now I know it is true.

Yesterday I was a patient. Apart from giving birth, ( which was a traumatic experience) I have never been a patient.
However I have been a caregiver for 17 years and I have been in hospitals and O.R's countless of times. In Denmark it is allowed for a parent to go into the pre-op to stay with the child until they are asleep.
Every time Martin had go through operations, I was the last person he saw before he was put under general anesthetic,  and when he woke up, I was the first he saw. I believe that made it a little easier and less scary for him.

I had done so many times, that it was just a normal part of life for me. 

Suddenly it was different. I was the patient.

There is colon cancer in my family, so even if I am not yet 50, I asked my doctor if I should be tested. I was told that if you have colon cancer or polyps in the family, you should start being tested at 40.

So yesterday was my time to be a patient. I had to have a colonscopy. 

I must admit, I was scared. I don't like anything that messes with my head and making me give up control. Knowing that I had to have a general anesthetic didn't make it better. 

Mike drove me to Plainville and on the way I tried to breathe deeply and relax. Didn't really work. But I had also asked for angels to be in the room with me. Turned out, they were all angels.

After checking in, I was met by a nurse who took me to a very small room, where I had to change into the very non -sexy hospital gown.

While sitting there waiting, I couldn't stop thinking about Martin and I just started crying. I thought of all the times he was been in hospital, going through so many kinds of procedures.
How scared he must have been.
It all came back to me and I was crying more for him, than for me being scared.

The nurse came back in and tried to calm me down. I told her what was wrong, when asked.
It turned out that she herself had lost a son and for that we had an instant connection.

I was put in bed to wait my turn.

 I was cold and my headrest was to high, 
Last time I was in a hospital bed was during the delivery. I remembered how I wanted to press the button to call the nurses, but didn't.
I waited a little too long before I called the nurse, but I finally did and I was proud of myself. Small step for others, giant leap for me.

I waited about an hour before anesthesiologist came to me.  She was so beautiful and very calming. She told me that I would be given propofol, which made me think of Michael Jackson. It was pretty clear to me, that I was not the first to make that connection, but she assured me that it was safe and got a bad reputation, because of what happened with Michael Jackson.

I was wheeled in and they all did what they could to make me relaxed. Knowing I was surrounded by women helped.

The anesthesiologist told put in the propofol and literally 3 seconds later I was out. Actually felt quite nice.

All of a sudden it was all over and I was in the recovery room . Don't remember how I got there.

I got some crackers and juice. I heard Mike's voice and that felt good. That meant I could go home shortly after.

I got dressed and was helped to the discharged chairs.  The doctor came in and told me that all was well and I don't have to be back for 5 years. Then I was discharged and went home.

I feel this was a turning point for me in many ways.  It was like a surrendered to the procedure and for the first time since Martin's death, allowed myself to just let go and be vulnerable.

I don't have to be only the strong one or always being right.

So in more ways than one, this was a good procedure to go through.


Sunday, March 6, 2011

I believe in signs.

                                   I am not leaning against the wall. Not easy to do with so much clothes on.

I have made an "agreement" with the Universe, that if "they" want me to do something, "they" will have to give me a sign. As I stubborn person, according to my husband, I need more than a sign. I need 3.  I want to make sure it is the right thing for me.

I have to be careful what I ask for, because I just got the 3rd today. 

I know the benefits of Yoga. Not because I practice it myself. I don't.  I have tried it a few times over the years, but I have the idea, that I have to be able to bend like a pretzel, and let's face it, I can't.

I would find a studio, which offered free trial, just to try it out, but I never stock with it, because I felt so discouraged about how rigid I was. Instead of sticking with it and becoming better. I gave up.

Not long ago, I was diagnosed with osteopenia ( not osteoporosis) and it scared me.  I am now paying the price for some bad choices I have made earlier in my life.

I know that weight training and exercise is good for many things, but I must admit, I find it really boring and expensive. So I have been looking at something I could enjoy and maybe Mike could do it with me.

My good friend Brigid has often mentioned yoga. She is very much into it, but she never pushed, which I appreciated.

2 days ago she sent me an email, where she talked about how good it would be for me. 1st sign.
Yesterday, I had to go to my chiropractor and I told him about the osteopenia.  He recommended Yoga and as it turned out, he had his own studio very close to where we live.   2 sign.

Mike was there as well and we talked about how good it would be for both of us. He gave me a leaflet  and I could see that there were many different types of classes, many times a day.

I must admit, I was starting to see the light, but I knew I needed more more sign. Yes I know, I am stubborn.

Mike and I have a ritual on Sunday mornings. We make our morning coffee and take it back to bed to watch morning TV. Very relaxing. 
Normally we watch the same program, but for some reason, it was quite boring this morning, so I channel surfed. I stopped at PBS which had a program, that sounded interesting even if we really, at that time, didn't know what it was about. Normally I would have continued, but for some reason I stayed and watched and found out that the program was Easy Yoga for Arthritis.  Sign number 3.

I will call the Yoga place on Monday and try it out. 

Being a Lutheran, I technically don't have to give up anything for Lent, but I think I will this year.

I will give up bad excuses. ( don't laugh, that is a tough one for me) and I will do yoga. Hopefully I can get Mike to join me.

I will keep you posted and maybe I can have a better yoga picture than the one on top.