Friday’s coming so fast – surgery, again. Being sliced open and left in major pain, again.
Someone asked me if I was scared.
Of dying on the table? No. Of the pain? Scared isn’t the right word. Of staying away from home, sometimes by myself, for a week? Yes. Of being woke up each morning at 5 for labs and residents? Scared, no, but dreading, yes. Of anesthesia? Quite the opposite. Of getting out of bed the first time post-op? Absolutely.
About this whole surgery – it’s weird. The transplant was sudden, phone-call-at-1:30am type of surprising, so I’m having a hard time knowing what to do with a scheduled surgery. Most of all, I’m wishing it didn’t have to happen. Although, I really hope it makes me feel better. All the doctors say it will. But once you have staples holding your entire abdomen together once, you never want to go there ever again.
Life as a transplant patient is much different that you’d think from the outside. It’s much different than a pre-transplant patient could ever understand. I talked to our Team’s psychiatrist about it and asked her if she finds it common that patients – even while prepared and educated pre-op – can never truly comprehend everything their Team tells them about life post-transplant… if they just can’t grasp it all, whether they are avoiding it or just overwhelmed by the amount of information to take in. She said she’s often thought the same thing. It’s just the way it goes. Then you spend your entire post-transplant life hoping you’ll be one of the successes, one of the 85% of liver transplants that make it, God forbid one of the 15%. You do all you can to prevent rejection and infection, spend all your life coordinating meds, side effects, and regular tests to make sure you’re still in the clear.
As you all know, it’s a game of white blood cells lately, and my WBCs hit 0.8 last week. You guessed it, I was on Neupogen injections (again) all weekend. My labs just keep getting worse, so the surgery needs to happen now. For those who asked, I’ll be getting blood transfusions to make sure my levels are high enough to get through surgery. Even my family seems more worried than I am. While this will be no fun, I don’t think it is a bad thing at all.
Although I thought that about the transplant…
I will never, ever be the same. I don’t think it’s my fault, but I know it’s my fate, forever my future.
And while so much is unknown, and there are so many questions to ask… to God be the glory.
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