Part One – The Operation
So things started off quite well. I was nervous, but that goes without saying. I’m not good with hospitals at the best of times, but this was particularly daunting because I was going to be awake during the whole thing. People kept telling me that you can feel everything, it just doesn’t hurt. They don’t realise that that is exactly what I was scared of. It did occur to me that with the exception of a breast enlargement or a nose job, this is the one surgery that people probably actually look forward too. And after seeing a video of the alternative form of delivery, I realised there were no good options…
Of all the cruel ironies, I went to bed the night before thinking that this would be my last night of uninterupted sleep for several months. I didn’t get a single second of sleep all night. It was that feeling of nervous excitement that you get before going away on a big holiday.
To make matters worse, I was nil by mouth from midnight onwards, with the exception of a sip of water big enough to take my meds. It makes for a long night on the couch when you can’t even have a drink of water.
We got to the hospital and checked into my room. Shaun was convinced that he was going to watch the whole procedure. He had been warned by several men that had been there before that actually witnessing your wife getting sliced open is hard on even the toughest guys. But he remained convinced… right up until they attempted to put the first lure into my arm in pre-op. As was the case with my last operation, there was a bit of an issue with the needle going straight through my vein and out the other side. By attempt three (I still have a badly bruised arm 15 days later) he was lying on his back on the floor beside my bed. The surgeon walked in and said hi to me, then spotted Shaun on the floor and pointed out that this wasn’t a very good start…
They gave him a chair by my head and he remained there for the entire thing. Just as well really – I had a hard time holding it together for a while so I was grateful for his distraction. The needle in the spine wasn’t as bad as I had expected it to be – the local anaesthetics were worse than the main act. It was when they started rolling my paralised body around that the nausea kicked in.
About 10 minutes in, it occurred to me that singing was the only way I was going to get through. Unfortunately, the only song that I could think of was KISS’s “I Was Made For Loving You Baby”. So I sang that on repeat for the entire procedure. I’m not sure it was appreciated by the surgical team after the first rendition.
Apparently I stopped long enough to hurl insults (I’m sure I considered them witty reparte) at anyone in view, although I don’t have any recollection of that.
Things didn’t go quite to plan. The operation which was supposed to take 30 mins took more like an hour. The babies weren’t easy to deliver and I lost a fair bit of blood.
The main thing is that we all came out unscathed, and thanks to the mysteries of the human psyche, I remember very little of it and am in no way traumatised. I’m still bloody glad I’ve had my two children in one shot and don’t have to go there again.
So slightly battered and bruised, I sit here today, the proud mother of two of the most perfect babies that I have ever seen.
More to follow…