Saturday, November 19, 2011

Hospitals are fun, and other falacies... Top Ten #10-6

So I've been in the hospital since Tuesday. It hasn't been that bad, but overall it has done little to boost my desire to have an extended stay in one again. Let's start with what has happened this week. On Tuesday I had my surgery, the plan was to go in and wedge out a couple sections of my right lung as well as take out the lymph node that was in between my lungs. Good news across the board there, You know from the last post that there was a concern that it would either be a teratoma or dead, necrotic tissue and it was ALL NECROTIC tissue!!!! The actually left the lymph node alone and didn't extract one spot because of its placement in my lung (it was in the middle, meaning losing more good lung tissue to extract dead tissue that will eventually go away on its own). This also means that because my left lung and lymph nodes that were likely involved in the 2nd surgery are of the same prognosis that I won't have to have the 2nd surgery!!!!!!!!! So for all intents and purposes, my cancer treatment is over!!!!!! I'll still have to recover from this surgery, but from here on out it will just be periodic scans every 3 months to make sure I'm still where I need to be at. So that was awesome news! Unfortunately, I've been in some pain, as one would expect a lung surgery patient to be, so I haven't been entirely up to blogging until today. There's also been far less going on than I expected so I don't necessarily have a live blog for you or any really funny diatribes about my stay. What I thought I'd do is to live blog, but that isn't feasible so why don't we just list the top 10 observations made by Susan and myself about this week.

10. Itching like a crackhead.

This what my skin has felt like this past week. It started when I had to get my sponge bath and I'm pretty sure the student nurses did it wrong. They didn't pre-apply any water instead just starting out wet, soapy towels and then half washing those off with barely wet towels. Basically they got the soap just wet enough to coat/liquid enough for it to adhere to my body and then they left it on. So for 2 days after this I had the dry skin of an iguana. The next couple of days I ended up wandering around on my walks looking like a paler version of Tyrone Biggums...

9. So in the above I mentioned my walks. If you've ever had an extended stay, then you know that they like for you to make sure that you get up and move around on a daily basis. As Suz has accompanied me on many walks we often talk about the people walking by us. After noticing, that most of the time, wearing scrubs makes you look like you just took a dump in your pants, Suz would always say, "Dumps like a truck..." as they passed. It was our little inside joke and it was funny until it got to the point where, if I had taken enough pain meds to make me silly, Susan would say the line and then all were subjected to me walking around in a hospital gown singing the Thong Song. I'm not sure what's more sad, that I did this repeatedly or that I knew way more of the song than I thought...

8. Hospital Food. Bleh. I've never seen great examples of it and this place has done it best to keep confirming what we already knew. They apparently don't care if you eat while you are here. Among some of the tops this week, we had a pork chop that looked half-regurgitated and thus they decided to top it with mac and cheese. Only they forgot to make it without cheese. So we open up the tray and its a shitty porkchop with a scoop of congealed macaroni on top?!?!?!?!
The other were the various jello concoctions they included in every meal. the 1st day I had lemon jello? I dont think even knew it existed and given the appearance, certainly had no desire to try it. The other days were mostly the perfect squares of jello with what appeared to be fruit in them. With what it looked like they spent on their hospital food budget in total, I somehow doubted that it had real peaches mixed in with the Jello. So, since we've eliminated that option, WTF was in that Jello?

7. How's you pain? Oh I'd say its bad, possibly just shy of Gene Simmons...

This was the observation that my buddy Burhan made. This line of smiley faces is what they use to determine your pain level. Its left to right, 1-10 with 10 being the worst possible scenario. A lot of the faces look funny and/or awkward. 4 & 6 look a little bit constipated. Which one can only assume that being constipated does leave you in some mild - moderate discomfort, so maybe there's a correlation there. Where it gets funny is around #8, Burhan noticed that they start adding mascara at that point. I assume this is possibly because eye makeup is painful??? I mean if you're a lab rabbit which is having it tested on you? then, yes it is likely painful...
What Burhan suggested was that the 2 longest tenured members of K.I.S.S., Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons were represented here. It makes complete sense. 8 is very severe pain and would give most of us the pouty look you always see on Paul's face as well as the inability to move most of your face, the latter coincides with the massive amounts of plastic surgery that Paul has had, rendering his face immovable. The trouble is that when I tell the nurses that my pain is about an 8, they may actually hear or think that I want to rock and roll all night, party every day.
10 is Gene Simmons. If you look closely the strain on the sign's face resembles the face paint scheme used by Simmons. So worst possible pain = Gene Simmons. Worst possible pain = odd reality tv show about your ego, making yourself a brand, and generally creeping me out. He married Shannon Tweed though, so I don't see how the queen of late night Skinemax being your wife = worst possible pain.

6. My mom took off from work to come stay with me in the hospital this week, which I am very thankful for. If you know or have met my mom, it's easy to see that she is a very easy going, sweet person, that doesn't get bent out of shape over much. Unless your name is Roxy and you are a student nurse... The hospital has no nursing aide's in the section we're in, so they instead have student nurses come in and do hands on learning as well as help out the nurses who always seem to be running at full speed. We had multiple SN's, but our best one was named Roxy. If Roxy were a song she would be this one...

She lingered. Always. Awkwardly & Forever. Since she was a student nurse in the first place, she had limited abilities. They mostly came in and checked your vital signs and handled things like making patients more comfortable/cleaning the rooms (you know, changing sheets, helping with any messes made, etc.). She made odd comments, obvious comments...we were always in an awkward state when she walked into the room. Plus she generally had no clue what she was doing. Therefore, my mom didn't care for Roxy. It got to the point where Mom left the room a couple of times as she came in to avoid the inevitable weirdness approaching.
The one thing she did with a Tourette's-like ferocity was to tell me to use my spirometer...

That's one of these:

Its known as an incentive spirometer. I have no clue what the incentive for using it was, but you'd have thought it was eternal salvation the way Roxy was promoting it. We actually think that it was the only word she'd managed to get good at saying and thus, felt more important when she used a technical term. So if you're on staff at Centennial Medical Center and somehow end up reading this. If you were mad because I didn't use my spirometer enough, blame Roxy. I don't like being told what to do repeatedly. Also, teach her some more words and how/when to exit a room and conversation properly. These are all things that will make the world better.

So, that's my top 10, with posts 10-6 on this one. I decided to split them up into 2 because of the size. so you can look for then next one containing #1-5 coming after this one in a bit.

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