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The ramblings and observations of a kidney transplant recipient, although not necessarily for that reason.

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A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole (recommended by Killer)
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Jerry! Wake up! It's over.....
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
what? where am I? what's that pain? oh that's what a catheter feels like. I feel great....but, ouch...where's my pain killers? Damn my throat hurts! What are all these things hanging off of or going into me?

First stop....recovery room. IV in my neck. IV in my arm. Bandage on my wrist from where a third IV was. Blood pressure cuff on my left arm automatically taking my blood pressure every half hour. Both my legs wrapped from toe to crotch in some sort of pad that fills up with air and then deflates at random intervals every 5 to 10 seconds, apparently something to keep the blood flow going through your legs. A tube across my face blowing oxygen up my nostrils. This thing taped to the end of my middle finger that measures the oxygen saturation in my blood, and makes the end of your finger light up red like ET's. Oh cool....there's another one on my other hand....I can actually touch them together and recreate the "ouch" scene all by myself. And the best part....a 1/2 inch tube coming out from my underparts running to some sort of urine-o-meter to measure the output of urine from my brand new kidney.

My nurse Mary interrupted her endless amounts of tasks to stop and tell me that Matt (my donor) just left recovery and that he was doing great. She was his nurse and she will be mine. Matt had apparently found out that she was a big Giants fan and told her about my front row tickets at AT&T Park. Apparently I was alert enough to have this conversation with her, although I would later forget about 98% of it. I figure I must have spent about 4 or 5 hours in recovery, although I don't know for sure. I'm mostly guessing from how long my surgery was supposed to be and at what time I ended up in my unit following recovery. I know almost nothing about Mary, but I remember how much I loved her. Maybe because she was a big Giants fan, or maybe because she was the source of my pain killers....but I just remember Mary was awesome.

The anestesiologist (sp?) had told me before the surgery that because of my sleep apnea they wouldn't be able to put me as far under as most people, and that it would probably mean that I would wake up in more pain than most people (um, thanks doc, great news!). I really did feel the pain right away, but more than anything I felt....good. I don't remember feeling this good. I lived with failing kidneys for so long, I didn't realize how much of my feeling down was attributed to it. It just felt like me to be low all the time and now I felt GOOD (10" gash and catheter pain excluded).

It felt like I was awake the entire time in the recovery room (although I'm sure I slept through most of it). I remember pain, then Mary, then no pain, then feeling good, then.....OK...bye Mary, thanks.... and off I went to my home for the next three and a half days......Unit G2S.....hey, there's my parents....Hi MOM! (Bear with me, the connection of these memories won't transition well for awhile). Hi DAD!
posted by othur-me @ 11:34 PM  
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