I slept badly the night before surgery and was glad when the alarm went off. After a shower, Tom made me a big breakfast and I tried to drink as much tea and juice and water as possible, only adding to my feeling of nausea.
I arrived at Barts early to check in to the surgical ward. They took my height, weight, blood pressure etc and asked a few questions before sending me down to nuclear medicine for an injection. When I checked in at the reception, the lady couldn’t find my name anywhere. My nerves were already through the roof. I knew if I didn’t have the injection done it would probably mean delaying surgery. She asked me to take a seat whilst she tried to find the booking. After some searching, she eventually found a piece of paper with my name on but no booking and no date for surgery.
Someone came to explain to me that the surgical team had not made the booking properly and they had to check if I was actually having my surgery today then they had to check if they could fit me in for the injection. I felt like I could really do without this extra stress the morning before surgery. Thankfully they managed to sort it all out and I had the injection of blue radioactive dye followed by a scan.
I checked back in at the surgical ward briefly then they sent me to the King Edward VII hospital in Marylebone – apparently where the Royal Family frequent in times of illness! If only I hadn’t been going in for some major, probably life-saving surgery then I really would have enjoyed the following experience a lot more. A doorman in full suit and top hat welcomed me, then I was checked into my room where my coat was hung up in the wardrobe whilst I was told about the number for room service, how to order food for post-surgery and I looked at the toiletries that were better than I have at home.
The anaesthetist came in to see me before surgery and spent a total of about ten seconds in the room asking if I had any breathing problems or loose teeth before disappearing again. I wasn’t sure if this made me more nervous that he wanted so little information or relieved that he was so confident. Laura then popped in and checked that I still wanted to go ahead with it all, which I did. Luckily I was the first patient seen that afternoon and it wasn’t long for me to wait before going to theatre.
I woke up at about half past four in recovery, feeling very heavily sedated and nauseous. Laura told me that it had gone well and she phoned Tom to let him know. I spent the next few hours snoozing. I tried to drink water but kept throwing up and sadly felt too sick to order any fancy food from the menu. I was quite surprised to see that the blue dye injection made my boob bright blue, as well as my vomit, and when I eventually went to the toilet everything that came out was also bright blue! At around half past nine I managed to get dressed, drag myself downstairs and get into the car that Tom had waiting outside. When we arrived home I went straight to bed.
I’ve been feeling surprisingly good since surgery, not too sore or sick. In my head I had been so focused on working towards surgery that I hadn’t given much thought to recovery and so have been frustrated that I am not instantly better. I realise now that I still have a long way to go until I feel completely back to myself. I have to wait for a couple of weeks to get the results back from surgery that will determine whether I need more surgery or chemotherapy.
We had a nice quiet Christmas in the flat, Tom & Philippa made a delicious dinner. Frank has had his first puppy training lesson today so I have my hopes up that he will return as a good boy.