The alarm went off at 4:15am. I got out of bed and walked down the hill to the washroom to have a shower and use the special antibacterial soap on my scalp. It is a chilly 8 degrees in the washroom as the windows are open, making my shower very brisk. I am not nervous. Everyone else around me is almost irrationally nervous/worried. But I am calm. I have no doubt that everything will go okay today. Being a great researcher, I have read both the good and the bad about the surgery. I have faith in my neurosurgeon and surgical team. I know deep down that I will be fixed.
The hospital building is dark and doesn’t look open. I am the only one at admitting where I am directed to day surgery. I am given my new uniform of a fancy blue gown, housecoat, blue booties, and two more wristbands. Chris stays with me and we make jokes about the surgery. We will be moved from day surgery to the main hospital operating room near my surgery time.
At 7:20am Chris and I follow a porter to the Operating Room waiting area that is somewhere in the main hospital. I have no idea where, because my glasses are off and I can not see a damn thing. We are told to take a seat in the waiting area. I put my glasses back so I can see. We watch the waiting area fill up; all the doctor’s & nurses take their patients to their “theatres”. Now I am the only person left. I finally meet the resident and anaesthesiologist who say that they are getting the operating theatre ready.
I meet a nurse, give my glasses to Chris and kiss him goodbye. I walk down the hallway to my door. Inside there are at least six people. I lie down on the table with my head in a brace, my arms are placed out like on a cross and I look up. I see all the big lights that look like satellite dishes. One of the lights has the nice camera that is used to guide the surgeon in my head.
The doctors all ask me how my summer was & I ask them how their summer was. I am then given freezing in my arm for the IVs to go in. Then a nurse puts a mask over my mouth and presses down. I almost lose it, as I start to panic. She says “take a deep breath, it is just oxygen” then the anaesthesiologist says “I have started to give you a cocktail”. Yup he did, my shoulders, arms and chest begin to feel tingly. Then he says “this will sting” and yes it does more than sting and I am out for the count.
I wake up thinking I am digging for dinosaur bones at DinosaurProvincialPark to find myself having three nurses and one of the surgeons looking at me. I don’t have my glasses so they all look like fuzzy blobs. I am taken from recovery to the 11th floor acute neuro or brainiacs ward to my own personal room with a view.
By noon, I eat lunch; by 3 I am walking around and doing good; The fog has been lifted and my vision on right side is better and brain is clearer. I thought I was an invincible machine but soon found my limitations short walks, short video watching and short reading and lots of sleeping.