Evening before surgery. The thoughts are going a little crazy about now...
1) This full body shave requirement will be the perfect time to time my lap speed
2) I will now have silky skin to be the envy of others
3) Maybe the impact will drive all the future growing hair upwards to my head!
4) I'm confident that it won't itch one bit when it grows back.
This is an attempt to journalize where I'm at during the recovery from surgery. I completed reading The Patient's Guide to Heart Valve Surgery yesterday and feel as we'll prepared as one can at this point.
These last three days have been a Pure blessing! My employer had a need to inventory all of the traffic signs and sidewalk ramps in Aurora, Indiana, and I wanted a crack at it. I estimate walking 20 miles through the process and enjoyed the historic homes and warmth of the people (the Mayor stopped to thank me for taking the burden off his staff). I felt great and have been regularly practicing deep breathing during the walking and at rest times. I need to soften up the leg muscles now and start getting the mindset into being passive...and not anxious. My prayers include a successful repair/replacement (good coordination between all surgery team), no infections, fresh blood transfusions, fantastic pain relief....and most importantly, that I will not be a complainer to Laura and that I'll adjust quickly and willingly to being a patient...for the time being.
...let me be an encouragement to others, through this process and afterwards!
Stage 1 - Operation Results and Recovery
Day 4 After Operation (Tuesday, 10/29/13)
If you are a person of faith, and facing a similar procedure, you will do stellar through relying on your support people. In my case the surgeon simply had a two hour procedure to repair both the aortic and mitral valves. Yes, I had the full zipper down the chest, but I'm so thankful that Tylenol has been sufficient to manage any pain...which I'm amazed was just occasional fevers, no real pain. I had a fellow worker have a quadruple bypass surgery the same day and we took time to encourage each other as we took laps around the hospital floor. He checked out today and we will obviously share a closeness that can't be described. I would suggest that anyone going through this surgery encourage and not restrict visits. Keep the visits brief, but the visitor is a great encourager no matter how bad your day is. Yesterday was a tough day for me...I went into "A Fib" and required a pacemaker. They comforted me by saying that it is common in 30% of patients and it is only temporary. The pacemaker was taken out today and I did 4 laps around the floor to see if the irregular heart beat would return, it didn't, but I had to stop due to dizziness. Oh well, you think that I would learn.
So, discharge, pending pacemaker is set for 2 days away...then the real challenges of the mind will follow. If you are reading this as a pending or current patient, stay in touch with your close friends with an iPad or laptop. Netflix using the hospital's WIFI has been a "touch of home". Look at the bright side continually, and don't hesitate to share your thoughts or concerns with each of the rotating RNs, GCPs, PAs and whom ever is guided your direction. Remember, you are and will continue to be an encourager and blessing to many people through this hick-up in life.