Here are some details of the last two weeks.
I get to the hospital and they have to do an NG tube. so I can ingest 64 ounces of the ironically named Golightly. (It should be called "go heavily , often, and right now." (I asked for the NG tube because it tasted extremely bad and I could not drink it orally, but I needed to get it down, or they wouldn't have been able to do the surgery. They inserted the tube without any numbing or sedation.) The Golightly does its job.
The next day in surgery. they gave me too much morphine, (10 mg, way way too much for me.) So I stopped breathing for a minute. This was very scary when I woke up, because I knew something was wrong, but I didn't know exactly what it was, and they didn't notice that I was awake for a while. Apparently they had to do something called "Narcan" me twice, and had been working to wake me up for 40 minutes. I kept trying to shout that I was awake, and finally somebody heard me. They kept telling me to cough, but my cough is not as strong as a normal person's is. They got me back from that, but I was transferred to three different rooms during the week I was there.
After a week in the hospital, they transferred me to a nursing home, which as usual they pretended to call a rehab center. The people working inside the home had no idea why I was there for the first 3 days. I got up in my chair every day that I could and they had secured wifi.
They also played elevator music in the hallway at a low volume all day. At first, I was scared because I thought I was the only one who could hear it. The food was the usual fare. I got a cool roommate named Cindy, but she had to go to the hospital a few days before I left, and was not back when I left, so I did not get to say goodbye. I hope she is ok.
They gave me my medicine in a weird way; so I often felt overly drugged, and they were very fond of stool softeners.
So every day, Daniel and I would sit in the room that they called the day room, using our tablets and waiting for lunch. I would stay in this room until I went to bed. That's pretty much all.
They discharged me from the nursing home the day before yesterday. And my home health nurse came yesterday to get familiar with my new setup.
I truly lost 20 pounds. I gained 37 staples, and have no more internal bladder, although my brain has not caught up with that idea, so I'm still having phantom bladder spasms. It's really weird, and the staples really hurt, especially when I cough or laugh or something like that. The pain gets a little less every day, and I'm trying to make it without very many pain pills. Today, I'm doing pretty well. It's better when you distract yourself by doing something else, and also, putting a heating pad on the area helps a lot. The thing that I "go" into now looks like a little brown windsock, and that attaches to a regular drainage bag, it's just that now I cannot feel when I go at all that way, so people have to be really careful not to have it twisted or whatever. It will hold a little of its own, but eventually, if it's not correct, it will leak or burst, and I won't know about it until I wake up or whatever.
I now have to drink even more than I did before, so it's good that it's hot because I'm pretty much always thirsty. And they attached the little brown bag to a piece of small intestine that looks like a birthmark. This is also weird to think about, but it's better than before because the small intestine has its own way of keeping itself infection free, by coating itself with some mucus like material; which it apparently continues to do no matter where it is located. (my friend Daniel keeps bringing up Ghostbusters. :-)
So, yeah, it was the exact opposite of fun, but I made it home, and I thank you for all your prayers.
My staples come out on June 25, after which I hope I can resume leading a relatively normal life for me, only with many fewer hospital visits.
Daniel says I look much healthier, and so does everyone else, so apparently I did make the right decision. I love you all.