Second Day in Hospital and Daily Bites

Today was my husband J’s second full day in the hospital.

This is proof positive that every BODY is different in how they respond to this surgery.  Compared to my recovery, his has been a bit rocky to say the least.  No leaks or anything like that, thank goodness, but he’s experienced some things that neither of us anticipated would happen.  I am just grateful that he is staying at a top notch hospital, that we have health insurance, and that he is getting fantastic care from the nurses and other health professionals who have visited him so far.

I got up early this morning so I could be at the hospital this morning to visit with whichever health professionals would come by to see him.  J was up and at ’em when I arrived at a little after 8.  He looked better today but felt worse than he did yesterday.  The nurses pulled his PCA pump early this morning and shifted his pain reliever to Lortab, which is what he will take once he is able to come home.  He slept most of the day today, I think because he was still catching up on his rest as he had not slept well the previous three nights.  J had decided that this morning he wanted to stay another night so that he could see if the dizziness would dissipate and to see if perhaps he could visit with our surgeon to ask questions he had about some of the side effects he was feeling.

Another doctor from our surgeon’s practice came to visit–it was the doctor who had done J’s endoscopy last week.  He checked out the incisions on J’s belly, deemed them looking good, and when my husband mentioned some of the things he’d been experiencing–shakes, dizziness and teeth chattering, the doctor said that he didn’t feel that any of those were a consequence of the anesthesia and were likely J’s body’s response to the surgery itself.  Kind of odd, really, but proof that no two bodies will react to the same surgery in the same way.  The doctor also told J to remove the Transderm-Scop patch that he’d placed behind his ear Sunday night as instructed by our surgeon to reduce nausea.  He explained that the patch could also cause dizziness and light-headedness.  After he got done examining J, he said that he or our doctor might be back in the afternoon to visit with him were he still there.

J was much more active this evening, getting up on his own to go to the bathroom and for walks.  Thankfully he was able to get up without being wobbly or dizzy–this is a concern, as he was very dizzy yesterday and had a lot of trouble even standing for short periods of time.  The biggest concern we both have is that he can’t drink much without getting extremely nauseated.  He’ll take a tiny sip, let it go down, and then waves of nausea hit.  I worry about this because right now, he’s hooked up to an IV which is keeping him hydrated.  This will obviously not happen here at home.  If he can’t drink, he won’t be able to stay hydrated once he is back home and this is dangerous.  I really hope that his condition improves some more tomorrow.

I keep reassuring him that each day gets better and that it does get easier.  The first few days of this life post-op SUCK, and that’s no lie.   I really hate seeing the love of my life in so much pain and discomfort because there is absolutely nothing I can do about it.  And that bothers me tremendously.  All I can do is just be there to hold his hand, to give him the awkward side hugs that he can have right now because regular hugs hurt too much, and to encourage him when he walks, burps or gets up on his own.  I know that all of these things are important and good, but they don’t make up for the fact that I can’t physically take his pain and nausea away so that he feels better.

Now I have a sense of what it was like for him to watch me while I recovered from my own surgery last month.

I am hopeful that tomorrow he can come home, because I miss having him here.  I miss his presence and I miss knowing that he is here.  We have not spent many nights apart from one another since we married 8 years ago, so this is difficult.   I just hope that he can swallow some water without feeling like he wants to hurl.  I fear he will get dehydrated and we will end up back at the hospital for him to get IV fluids.

Perhaps he will tap some inner strength he doesn’t realize he has.  Or perhaps his body will finally let him sip more than a teaspoon of fluid at a time.  We shall see.

Here are the Daily Bites for yesterday:

Yesterday's food choices, from upper left:  scrambled egg with diced ham and cheese; chicken tortilla soup from the hospital cafeteria (I ate the chicken only since eating it with the broth would have been eating and drinking together); second breakfast from the hospital cafeteria of egg and bacon with a bit of cheese; Isopure Zero Carb; multivitamin and calcium supplements x2.

Yesterday’s food choices, from upper left: scrambled egg with diced ham and cheese; chicken tortilla soup from the hospital cafeteria (I ate the chicken only since eating it with the broth would have been eating and drinking together); second breakfast from the hospital cafeteria of egg and bacon with a bit of cheese; Isopure Zero Carb; multivitamin and calcium supplements x2.

It should be noted that whenever I eat scrambled eggs, I can only eat half to 3/4 of what is shown, depending on the quantity.  When I make a scrambled egg here at home, I eat about 3/4 of it before I call it quits.  When I ate them at the hospital, I ate about half because the serving was much more than one egg even though it was advertised as “one egg your way.”

And today’s:

Today's food choices, from upper right:  Isopure Zero Carb; chili (no beans, as it should be!) with a little cheese; egg scrambled with cheese and bacon from the hospital cafeteria; multivitamin and calcium supplements x2; 2 oz deli turkey with a slice of reduced fat cheddar cheese plus a spoonful of vegetarian chili (all beans and peppers) from the hospital cafeteria.

Today’s food choices, from upper right: Isopure Zero Carb; chili (no beans, as it should be!) with a little cheese; egg scrambled with cheese and bacon from the hospital cafeteria; multivitamin and calcium supplements x2; 2 oz deli turkey with a slice of reduced fat cheddar cheese plus a spoonful of vegetarian chili (all beans and peppers) from the hospital cafeteria.

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