2nd June. Insertion of the catheter.

I got to the hospital for ten to seven, a bit before maybe. My wife squeezed my hand, the lines in her face from worry bleached out by sadness. We walked to the big , domed building, the hospital is old and the shell is from 1840. We get to the correct department, follow the orange flashes on the floor. Like Dorothy, following the yellow brick road to Oz.

The nurse tells us the room number. Room 101. I think of Winston Smith immediately, and the rats tied to his face. I’ll tell them anything they want to know!

We sit, hold hands, waiting.Time ticks on, we joke, try to make light of the situation. The nurse tells us we are first up, and at 8.00 I kiss my wife goodbye and she bravely goes to work. I’ve already undressed and yes, my arse is already hanging out of the gown. There goes my dignity. Off they take me, through a maze of corridors. Finally I’m in a huge waiting space. The kind nurses take my temperature and blood pressure, and put a drip line in.Then at 8:30 they wheel me into a huge operating block. There is a big lamp hanging from the ceiling, silver and white. It’s really cold! They put a fan which blows hot air under the bed covers next to me. We wait for the anesthetist. She comes, and at 8:38 I get some gas. A cold liquid is injected into my arm. I feel dizzy. Then suddenly I feel very confused, and try to resist. I remember my legs flexing, and trying to resist!

I wake up, its 1130.It takes until 12 until I’m coherent. I tell the nurse she has beautiful earrings. It’s because they gave me 3 grams of morphine for the pain. I get wheeled back to room 101 and phone my wife. She’s been rather worried, but she’s happy to hear my voice, and I to hear hers.

Time ticks by; I count the squares on the floor, on the ceiling, drift in and out of consciousness, feel the pain stab and go.

My wife comes to pick me up. The doctor visits and tells me to take it easy. We get all the paperwork we’ll need, and then  my wife helps me into a wheelchair and lugs me to the car. In the car I vomit. Its Niagara Falls vomit, caused by the morphine.

Then we go home. I phone my mum and dad, give our little boy a cuddle and go to bed. He’s made a picture for me, daddy attached to the machine.

Today I’ve done nothing. Just shared the room with my “friend” the fly, who zooms into my hair.Buzzes and annoys me. I need a wash, and to brush my teeth!. But I’m slowly getting better, and I’m lucky to have had the operation, and to have such super friends and family, and such a wonderful, beautiful wife.

The wound will heal, and the 13th the will check the plaster. Lets hope its lucky 13!

Fatigue comes and goes, as does the pain. My shoulders are stiff and sore, and my intestines are having a musical party.

Ah well, tomorrow is another day.

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