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oh the joys of trying to post my entry...

Start of another week... 
i guess i better bring you all up-to-date with the Hernia/Hospital thing first.  Can't believe i haven't done this yet... 

All went to plan - booked my two tickets [single to Harrogate & a single return from Leeds] - Craig & wife, Nicola were to be my overnight hosts, all ready.   Packed barest minimum of stuff to go up to Harrogate;  only going to be there for the afternoon and get the hernia repaired, then out, stay over with C&N and catch train next morning and go home.   Riiiiight....  not.
i managed to get up to Harrogate ok, inspite of the high winds that delayed my second train leg, making us 15 minutes late getting into Leeds and missing my connection.  But that was ok, i had plenty of time.   Taxi to Hospital, found the Day Surgery unit and got all ready etc.   Theatre nurse came and collected me and we were chatting through all the pre-med stuff and she said something about staying overnight - Whoa! hold the phone!  what was that?!!
The surgeon Leinhardt came and spoke to me;  yes, you will be admitted and stay 'a couple of days' - that hernia is BIG.  i lay there and stared none too lovingly at him - speechless for all of five full seconds, as i debated the wisdom of calling my surgeon a dickhead just before he took the scalpel in his hand...  i eventually said, nobody mentioned my being admitted.  We sorta decided we would play it by ear and see what happened.
i came round and was duly wheeled into the ward - spending the next FOUR DAYS there!!!!!!!
To say i was furious, would be the Understatement of the Year.   i had the bare minimum of toilet gear - deoderant, moisturiser, toothbrush & toothpaste - no soap or whatever [Craig had plenty of that, right?] - no nightie, forgot my dressing gown & slippers [not too worried, not staying right?] and ONE book, already half read.  i had very little money, one visitor once, the whole time and my blood pressure was considerable!  
i found out the following morning, when i saw Leinhardt, that he had actually done a lot of work on my stomach, doing reconstructive work [removing some intestine? fatty tissue etc] before closing the stomach wall, placing a mesh over the area and forming the muscle and skin over that, to grow all together and get nice and strong and not happen again.   The hernia was a lot bigger than when he had seen it, five months ago but wasn't that to be expected?  i expected it - wouldn't he?  He has had a LOT more experience of this stuff than i, he repairs them all the time.
Dickhead tried to claim he had told me, i flatly contradicted him saying, No, you did not.  He then tried to blame the Pre-Assessment & Admission dept, creep...    So when i finished my book, i read a lot 'womens' mags, total crap, till my stomach turned and i shelled out for the in-house tv to stop my brain from turning to mush and allowing me to keep up with the world outside.

Most everything went to plan medically, except for the night i managed to work out how to sit up without yelling or having a nurse pull me up, while she went for a commode - and managed to rip the shunt out of the back of my hand - at 3 am...  i only knew i'd done it, when i put my foot in a pool of blood spreading under my feet, saw the blood on my hands and realised it was mine.  i managed to staunch the flow before she returned.  We slapped some cottonwool over the top and taped it down and i sat on the commode and used wet-ones to clean off the resulting gore!!  The following morning, i peeled off the dressing and washed the remaining blood off.  
Nothing much else happened of any note, except for the older ladies with short memory spans, trying to go to the loo in the middle of the night, still attached to drip stands.  They'd get to the end of the flex and have to stop - one banging on my feet at 4am to wake me up for help!  Thanks a lot...  We did try to look after each other...
As i didn't get a lot of sleep at night, i was always snatching an hour here and there throughout the day - try sleeping in a room that is never dark, has five other women in it, breathing, snoring for England and muttering, staff chatting outside at the nurses station half the night, visiting medics calling in to do whatever, nurses coming into the ward to take blood pressures etc and a very narrow bed after sleeping in a double bed most of my life...  add to that the usual pillows and mattress covered in plastic, which makes me super heated and i sweat like i'm in the desert...  i hate hospitals...  But all the nursing staff, bar one who had a snippy attitude, were total sweeties...

i had to wait until the drain in my side stopped...draining - at which time most of the scar was well on the way to being healed and i could leave.  Leinhardt appeared at breakfast time Monday 15th, peered at the tube and said, "You can go home today" and i said, really? "Yes", he said and i literally yelled, "YIPPEE!!"  then i shook his hand and told him his tie was 'colourful' & loud.  He grinned and said it makes some people feel seasick!!  i could well believe it...
i spent the next few hours on the phone.  i had to ring my landlord, who i was supposed to be meeting that evening, i had to contact Craig/Nicola, find out what i could do with the unused part of my train ticket - arrange to buy a new one etc etc etc...
Finally got it all sorted - Craig would come and get me after work between 6.30 - 7.30 depending on traffic, one of them would take me to the station the following day and so on.  Railways were sympathetic and said send unused ticket, new one and a letter from Hospital with a covering note and we will see what we can do about refunding your ticket.  Thank you.   i found if i booked a ticket that night, i could get a cheap new one for £16 but if i went to buy it on the day, it would cost me around £60!!!!  Crazy...   So bought one asap - Leeds has one of those e-ticket machines where you put in your credit card that you used to pay for it and it gives you your ticket.  Cambridge unfortunately doesn't, no idea why as it is bigger than Ely, which does. 
Any way, i spent half the day doing all this, had lunch - gloated over not having to order food for Tuesday!  Left a message for Lynnie to let her know i was getting out and that i would ring her later [which i did from Craig's], and so on.
As soon as the drain came out, i went and had a shower and washed my hair - talk about all patients must be boiled!!  it was so hot, i couldn't stand under it...  enough anyway, i managed.
The boring bit was after i got dressed and sat around waiting for Craig.   He rang the ward and let them know he was about 10 minutes away.  The snippy one came and told me and said was i going to meet him down in Reception?  i had said i would wait for him in the ward but i thought, what the hell and said i'd go down.   'Fine' she said and disappeared.   No offer to come with me and make sure i didn't collapse on the pretty decent walk out to the lift and down to the front door...  and Snippy paused in her talking long enough to make sure i knew how to get out [half her instructions were wrong, incidentally] and then completely ignored me...   O-kay....  i set off with my backpack on and hobbled out...   i really could have done with a rest half way but there was nowhere to sit...  Anyhow, when i got to the main door, i was looking to sit when Craig pulled up outside.
Nicola could not have been more welcoming and was very sweet.  She made dinner for the three of us and very nice too.  We sat and talked till 11pm and she went to bed.  Craig and i talk for another hour and then we went to bed too.  She had the day off next day, so she drove me into Leeds to the station.  i must send her one of James' cds as a thank you [as soon as i can find one!!]   She has never heard him.
i got my tickets just fine and was in just nice time to catch my train.  No problems going home, just a little sore if i moved too fast.   It is true, there is no place like home...  even my modest digs...
My housemates were welcoming and asked if i was ok.   Not quite the mail waiting for me i had hoped but finally got my Christmas present from Jan & Ed in Phoenix - three pairs of earrings, always interesting to see what she has picked out as being suitable for me!  i guess it is a reflection of how i am remembered or perceived...  like i said, always interesting!
The house was cold - no heating!  i discovered that we had a fuse problem in the electric board and eventually, they decided to rip it all out and put in gas!  But this was not happening until the weekend...  This was Tuesday remember...  Luckily i have two little blow heaters and by lending one to the Diminutive Greek, i stopped him from using the oven to heat up the kitchen and dry two damn tea towels over the back of a chair!!  Nearly took his head off over that one...
Paresh, my landlord - did i tell you he looks like Himber?!! - called in on Friday night, with two Japanese gas fitters in tow and they worked like dogs over the weekend to get it all in.  Still drilling and banging around at 11.30pm Saturday night... finally doing all they could later on Sunday.  Still not totally finished but we have heat in our rooms.  The other radiators in the house will have to wait until next Sat/Sun apparently.  Don't care...
i started chasing the Social to get my benefit sorted and eventually found out that they had written to my last employer for something, no idea what as they already HAD everything they needed... i reckon they were just slack...  Anyhow, it was all sorted on Thursday apparently and Friday i went and signed in again and got my insurance papers signed too.   Still haven't had an official letter telling me what i will get - got some details from the Housing Benefit people today, when i went down to show them all the paperwork they needed.   Now we wait - about two weeks max, he said, hopefully less.  Which i can tell Paresh - all the money will go to him to save time and we have already discussed this - he will send me half of the first payment, as it should be a double for January & February.   i have already paid him January, so he will pay me back.   i need it for my overdraft.
Now i just have to wait for the payment protection insurances to make their minds up and i will be okay for a while.   Less to worry about and i can concentrate fully on getting well again and getting a job.   i have been very lucky so far in my dealings here - doctor just down the road, post office as close the other way, a few shops for emergencies etc and Tesco's deliver.   What is lovely, my bus - again almost outside the door - will take me through town and across the river and i can get off outside the JobCentre.   A Dayrider bus ticket costs £2.80 and i can ride as many times as i like all day on that, very handy.   Go visit the JobCentre, stop off in town on the way back to shop or go to the main post office, visit the market or whatever - hop back on the bus and be home in about fifteen minutes.
i found a local hairdresser, near my Post office!  reasonable cut but will try the others there before Madam Multicolour does it again...  ok but not good, if you know what i mean...  but only £14 dry cut.  Some burke in Cambridge central wanted to charge me £65 over twixmas!!  on yer bike!!
There is an amazing Aladdin's Cave of a shop in the local shops, part hardware, manchester and odds & sods - tried to buy a front door bell there [doesn't work in my room, too many walls] but did get a new loo seat in the sale...  very superior wooden one!
i am missing a good butchers, will keep looking.   i was despairing of finding a Chinese that delivered and a few days later, a leaflet dropped through the letterbox!!  Welcome to the Flying Wok!  pretty good too....   *Ahem, now i'd like oodles of money please... well, worth a try...*

Mark is still working in Norwich, says he might come over next Saturday - cool...

Lynnie and i were talking about going down to London for the Chinese New Year Parade on 18th February - Bex says she'd like to come too, also cool...  Watch the parade, have a Dim Sum lunch, have a poke around in the second-hand book shops in Charing Cross Road and whatever...  nice day out...  i can get a cheap Day Return - cheaper if i get a Network Railcard [about £20] - for about £12 - *sighs happily*  i am so liking this...  and i can use the Railcard to get cheaper fares in May too...

i am really glad i bought all the Spring Fever tickets when i did - and booked & paid for the hotels at the same time...  i just need rail money, some for food & drink and incidentals and i'm good...  Wonder if the rumour about James adding to the events will prove to be just that...

i'm rambling...  go to bed...
night, my dears...   xxxx


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 23rd, 2007 05:06 pm (UTC)
Your life is such a fascinating read! :D Could have done without the hospital bit though...fancy them not warning you. It cost a fortune to have an op these days with all the little extras such as telly. :( It sounds like you've settled in marvellously, just hope the DSS pull their finger out now. :D Lol at the diminutive Greek. :D
Jan. 23rd, 2007 05:15 pm (UTC)
I mean you could have done without the hospital bit...I enjoyed reading about it and sympathising. :)
Jan. 23rd, 2007 06:56 pm (UTC)
Yes, Life is one Rich Pagent!
Glad we amused! i could have strangled the damned surgeon and i think he got that... And yes, Social finally extracted digit!!
Jan. 23rd, 2007 07:43 pm (UTC)
Re: Yes, Life is one Rich Pagent!
Lol. ::cheers::
Jan. 23rd, 2007 05:13 pm (UTC)
*drops exhausted from the tale!!!*

I'm really glad that everything is getting nicely sorted out, but what a hassle with the hospital!! So annoying not to be told that it's an over night (plus!!) stay.

Jan. 23rd, 2007 06:59 pm (UTC)
You got that right!
i dropped exhausted into bed when i got home - hadn't had a good nights sleep for FIVE DAYS!! However humble, there IS no place like home... But it is now sorted *crosses fingers, arms, toes and eyes* LOL
thank you, sweets!
(Deleted comment)
Jan. 24th, 2007 10:23 am (UTC)
Dunno about it being THAT interesting, Chrispy! But i think the surgeon recognised the nasty gleam in my eye!!
He escaped by a whisker, as i was part sedated at the time... otherwise my blood pressure would probably have sprayed out of my ears!!

Jan. 24th, 2007 05:27 am (UTC)
Wow, I need a nap now! I'm tired just hearing about your adventure. I'm glad everthing went well with the surgery (aside from the extra days in hosptital) and it sounds like the benefit stuff is finally working itself out.

*big hug* from across the pond.
Jan. 24th, 2007 10:10 am (UTC)
Thanks, babe!

i will be happier when the scar looks less horrible...and everything has healed properly - no heavy lifting for another 4.5 weeks!! But this is pretty standard for abdominal surgery.

When you are out of work, you sure need all the help and encouragement you can get!

*hugs back and blows kiss*

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )