Thursday, June 12, 2008

A leg up

Hope made me promise to keep her blog going and since I have nothing else to do but work I thought I'd check in and do a Sports Guy style play by play (the Sports Guy is only the greatest, most unbiased Boston fan by the name of Bill Simmons of ESPN and Now I Can Die in Peace --- THE book about the Red Sox finally winning the World Series --- for those of you not familiar with his style) of the day's happenings.

Our morning started off just like every other, up at 2:30 AM, shower, put on your best Celtics T-shirt thinking about nothing but critical game 4 tonight, make a sandwich for the car ride, grab a Diet Coke for some caffeine, make sure your wife doesn't eat or drink anything while you flaunt yours, and then off to the day's adventures. Between 3 and 5 AM traffic was light (shocking I know) and while those that know me probably won't believe it, we arrived at Moffitt on time by 5:15. At registration we literally were rolling in our chairs laughing and had the registration lady rolling too as we couldn't even answer her simple questions. The roomful of nervous patients and families behind us must have thought we were crazy as we just laughed and laughed.

Do you have a living will, hope says "nope" and Jake says "yep." We discuss it and decide both of us are right and we did that with about 3 of her 5 questions. I think the pressure of the Celts game tonight had us off our game (it was probably Rondo's ankle that was really concerning Hope). Anyway off to pre-op where we had an amazing group of nurses and CNA's, some of the best we've experienced with her now tenth surgery. They could not find a vein on Hope, so they eventually drew blood from her foot with the ace of the hospital staff coming in like Pappelbon in the 9th to get her IV connected.

They could not get enough blood for any tests they needed so they decided it was good enough for the drugs and when she was in her happy place (that's what Hope and I call it for her because she doesn't drink and still only does legal drugs --- I'm working on that still --- so the only time she's loosey goosey is when the anesthesiologist hooks her up. Before one of her other surgeries a few years ago, after she was in her happy place she was working the room like a junior high schooler after their first two beers of their life (Mom if you're reading this, it's based only on what Kurt told me). When she found out that she knew the patient's doctor next to us, all she did was go on and on about him. When he showed up to talk to his patient, he could barely get a word into them because she kept telling him how much she loved him. Of course he didn't know who she was until he recognized me, so that's why we call it Hope's happy place. This kind of reminds me of Dustin from college, the I love you's and uncomfortable, long man-hugs start rolling towards the end of that first six-pack.

As they're about to roll her into surgery, the doc who we'd already talked to twice comes in and says they have a change in plans. He normally gets a one-page fax about the veins and blood flow in her arm where they're taking a vein to put in her tongue, but this time it was two pages and the second page just came through as it didn't previously. He goes on to tell us that her veins don't connect in the middle of her hand like most mortals (Hope is no mortal after everything she's been through) so if they operate like they planned she would lose use of her hand. We thought that was helpful information to have because they had to operate on her right hand since her left had 17 nodes removed in years past. By helpful what I really mean is, Holy Shit doc, check the top of the fax where it clues you in on page 1 of 2 or page 1 of 1!!! That may have been more in my head that what I actually said.

So I put down the scriptures I had been reading to Hope since I practically have them memorized anyway and handled it like any real man would, cried like Rocky did when Mick died in Rocky 2. To this day, no way Mr. T wins that first fight if the Mick doesn't get knocked down at the bottom of the staircase because Paulie just couldn't manage like the Mick. So while Hope's in her happy place but sobering up upon this news, we (and by we I mean I agreed with the doctor) decide to take the vein from her leg instead which is an easier recovery from surgery but the skin they get from her leg is less flexible then from her arm. That means that when they rebuild her tongue with the "flap" she'll have a harder time with speech therapy. We agree to proceed (I think Hope would have agreed to have her tongue sewed onto her nose to get back to her happy place at that point) with the leg surgery instead of the arm a couple of minutes before they wheel her off.

While I've been typing this short novel (nobody will read it anyway) the nurse came out to give me an update. She's now out of her happy place and out cold which is how she'll stay for anywhere from 48 to 72 hours. She'll likely be in ICU for 3 or more days and in the hosptial anywhere from 7 to 14 days (I just heard a cheer come up from my office with this news 2.5 hours away) since I won't be back for a while. Now all I have to decide is whether to get some work done or watch Saved by the Bell season 17 (thanks Jim Trauger for the DVD and I promise it won't be scratched or I'll replace it) --- the episodes when Kelly Kapowski started to really fill out, and unfortunately for Zack because he marries her in Vegas at the end of the season she filled out a little too much. But don't worry, Jesse goes onto Showgirls fame years later and Screech into Utube porn fame, so all's well for now with the Saved by the Bell class. Like the Celtics, Hope already has a leg up on her surgery today.


AnnMarie said...

oh man..what a morning already. Keep us posted there Rocky and if you need more DVD's of Saved by the Bell, Meredith has them :)

Esther said...

Wow, it's been quite a morning. You sounded so normal on the phone! Hey, let us know if you want us to take you some food later today or could use some company. John and I are here for you both.

Myrtle's Mayhem said...

I so don't watch Saved by the Bell, but I did want to point out that another alum from the show went on to critical acclaim on 90210....I'm just sayin!

Keep up the good work Jake and keep us posted on the progress.

hugs to you all

Jen said...

Keep up the updates Jake.
Crazy morning.

buhtafly said...

wow! what a morning! I will continue to keep Hope in my prayers! please keep us updated!