Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Scar Project- First Submission

  Most of us have scars from something, self-inflicted or otherwise. Some have a great story behind them, others are painful reminders of things we'd rather forget. But all are part of the journey of our lives. I'd like to feature yours on my blog; if you're interested in participating please check here for details. I'm in no way trying to romanticize or glamorize the wounds life gives us.  My hope is that sharing them might help raise awareness in some of what others have gone through.

  My first submission comes from Fenella, though it's a bit long it was an interesting read. In her words...

  "I had a benign tumour, called a Focal Nodular Hyperplasia on my liver. It measured 10 x 9 x 9 cms or thereabouts. Anyway, it's my favourite scar, it has such a long story behind it. Oh and feel free to use my name, I'm proud of what I went through!"

August 27, 2010

   "I was awoken around 5.45am to prepare for surgery. I was met by a lovely smelling nurse and the anaesthetist, who proceeded to try to find my horrid veins. In the mean time the nurse packed me under a blanket that had warm air pumped into it, it was very cosy indeed. Next thing I was aware of was them telling me that I would begin to feel tired and I was out like a light.

   "Fast forward through all the surgery bits, coz I have no idea what they did! I woke up in my room, or at least that's the first memory I have. I was in a single room, hooked up to oxygen via a facial mask. I later discovered I had a drain in my stomach, coming from my liver, a catheter so I didn't have to get up to wee and a central line straight into my neck to administer IV drugs and to easily take bloods. I also had a PCA – a Patient Controlled Analgesic device. This contained morphine and I could press a little button and administer it to myself as required. I had a drip line feeding me ketamine too, this is a common analgesia used after surgeries (as well as an illegal party drug). I was fairly comfortable, though I did ask for a nose prong oxygen mask rather than the facial mask. The only weird thing for me was the anaesthetic drugs had wonked my eyes, I couldn't focus any further than a couple of feet in front of me.

   "Of course a lot of my memory of this time is really broken, but I do remember the first night having a bad reaction to the ketamine they were giving me. I'd started feeling uneasy and unsettled and it escalated into me feeling terrified and really unwell and unhappy. They took me off it immediately and within 20 mins I started to feel a lot calmer and happier.

   "On my 4th day of admission I was told that I could go home. When I woke up the next day I was feeling ok, refreshed but still like a complete space cadet. Then everything went pear shaped! By mid afternoon I was in a huge amount of pain and it was escalating. By late afternoon I was pacing the house, crying, moaning and wondering where the heck it had all gone wrong.

   "I knew I had to get back to the hospital, so my friend who is now an absolute angel in my eyes, picked me up and we met my Dad at the hospital. I was suffering more than I ever had, more than the very first few hours out of surgery and I knew things weren't right. Within 20 mins I was in an E.R. bed. Things moved slowly that night, but I was given lots more pain relief and felt a lot happier. I spent about 24 hours in the E.R, most of those waiting for a bed to become available up on my old ward. Eventually I was given some disgusting contrast liquid that supposedly tasted like aniseed. I had to drink that and then wait for my CT scan that had been booked in. I had my CT scan done, they injected a different contrast into me and I was taken back up to my E.R. bed. By 7pm I got the word that I was to move back up to my old ward. To say I was happy was an understatement. Eventually I was wheeled up on a wheelchair and settled into my new bed on 7 East. I felt like I'd come home and immediately relaxed into my new environment. I then spent another 4 days on 7 East.

   "I had plenty of visitors in my time in hospital which was great. I must say the nurses I had were by far the best I've ever had. Always smiling and nothing was too much for them. I developed quite a healthy crush on one of them, a gorgeous red head who was chirpy and ever so sexy. I got to spend quite a bit of time with her, so that made my days entirely sunnier. She was the one who removed my staples, well some of them. She had a student nurse with her and after she'd removed a few I asked the student nurse if she wanted to remove the rest. She was excited to be given the task. Thankfully it was a painless procedure and after a few minutes all 30 staples had been removed.

   "The next day I was given the all clear to head home, after 10 accumulated days in hospital. In hindsight, they never should've sent me home after 4 days. It was far too soon and I'm not surprised I ended up back in hospital. But I'm very happy with everything else that happened. I've got a nice clean scar that is healing really well. During my first visit home, I entirely felt that the surgery had been a big mistake and I was wishing that I'd never had it done. But now that I'm feeling better and am far more relaxed, I realise that it really was worth it."

after surgery

ten months later

Thanks for this Fen, it means a lot to me! I've enjoyed getting to know you.

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