When I tripped over a string of lights on my patio on March 29, 2008, I hit the cement like a meteor striking the earth. In scientific terms that can be an ELE, an extinction level event. And, not to be too dramatic, that is practically is what it was for life as I had known it up to then.
Yeah, not too dramatic. lol
I had never broken a bone before, but knew the instant I hit the ground that something really, really bad had happened to my arm. The sensation was almost electrical, what I would imagine it would feel like to have lightening strike. The pain was unspeakable.
At the Emergency Room, they told me my arm was broken. What they didn’t tell me was the head of my arm bone, essentially the bottom half of my shoulder, had shattered into four pieces. And, truly, my life has not been the same since.
After a fruitless four day search for someone to take care of me, I found Dr. Wonderful. He was so great, in so many ways. I had my first operation since I was a child, actually almost exactly 50 years earlier. I was patched together in an effort to preserve the bone. And it might have worked. Except for Multiple Sclerosis.
The MS, the theory is going, has kept my arm from healing properly. The result has been relentless pain and little use of my arm since the day I fell. A second surgery was done to clean up the scar tissue that had developed, in the hope of calming everything down once and for all.
No such luck.
I am heading into my third shoulder surgery and will have part of the joint replaced. The theory this time is by taking away the source of the pain, my damaged bone, the pain will be relieved.
Instead of getting easier, this surgery stuff is getting harder and I am practically certifiable with anxiety at this point. I have watched the You Tube shoulder replacement film so many times, I could do the surgery myself. I am contemplating asking them to let me stay awake, just to make sure they are all doing everything they should.
I watched one training film for the surgery where the anesthetized female patient was COMPLETELY EXPOSED from the waist up the whole while her surgeon was talking to the camera. Bastard. So now I am obsessing about my 55 year old boobs, which nursed four children for a total of ten years, that they will be flopping over the sides of the operating table and resting on my surgeon’s shoes. For all to see and trip over.
Not fun. Well, not for me at any rate.
The surgery is done with the patient in a sitting up position. Apparently I had a little airway trouble during the last operation (a little airway trouble=I was unable to breathe), so I had to be intubated, a tube was put down my throat to make sure I didn’t suffocate.
More not fun. Although I suppose suffocating isn’t so spiffy either.
Can you tell yet that I don't want to do this?
I am trying to focus on the possibility that following this operation, I could be without pain for the first time in 20 months. Focusing on the fact that I love and trust Dr. Wonderful. Focusing on how truly kind and professional the staff is at the surgery center. Focusing on how it could be worse and there could be no options for me at all, that shoulder replacement is a miracle of modern medicine. Focusing on...
Wait!!!! Who am I kidding?!?! I’m a neurotic Drama Queen with major modesty and control issues. THAT’S ALL I CAN FOCUS ON!!! AAAAGGGHHH!!!
My bare breasts will be drooping from here to Kalamazoo and I won’t be able to do anything about it! I won’t be in charge! I won’t be calling the shots! I won’t even be freaking awake!
I have no tidy way to end this little rant. I am praying not so much that the surgery goes well, although that would be awfully nice. More than anything when I get there tomorrow morning at six a.m., I don’t want to make a complete fool of myself and totally lose it or something. Cause that’s how I’m feeling. You know, sort of like John Lithgow on the plane in The Twilight Zone.
Not to be John Lithgow. That would be my prayer.
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