Friday, March 26, 2010

Answer to "Can I have coffee after surgery?"

I think every doc is different.

Just an hour before I left the hospital, I lifted my doleful eyes to my surgeon and asked, "Doc, will I ever be able to drink coffee again?"

He looked at me like I was crazy, that out of all the questions I could ask during his final visit, this is what I posed.

"You can drink coffee today."

I wept openly. "Thank you! Thank you for saving my life."

He peeled his hand out of the tight husk of my own, and with shifting eyes excused himself. As I yelled after him - "I am forever in your debt! Thus are we inextricably linked through all time!" - he quickened his pace and broke into a jog down the hallway, out of my life.

I wiped the black streaks of mascara off my face and applied bright red lipstick thickly and forcefully around my lips, not caring about missing my lips entirely in some places.

So yeah, I can drink coffee.

So there's that,


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Losing It

I'm in a bad place.
I apologize in advance for the tone of this post, and in retrograde for the tone of recent posts.
I'm in a bad place.
The 3-month post-op mark is fast approaching, and I cannot avoid the "normal" era of depression that arrives with this anniversary.  Other post-ops say this has happened to them.  I thought I could avoid it by being positive about my surgery, positive about my loss, and remaining physically active.  I've done all those things.  I am still very VERY happy to have had this surgery, very proud of my 45 lb loss so far, and have been active since day two.
And still...there's a dark cloud around me.  For the past two weeks I've felt sooooo tired and sluggish, I could have stayed in bed every day.  I wanted to walk a few miles outside on Saturday, and I almost didn't go.  I was up at 9:00 am, but I didn't get out the door until 2:00 pm.  I told myself, "You've got to live today," and spent an hour putting my gear on piece by piece, during commercial breaks.  I kept telling myself, "Put your pants on, put your pants on...then we'll deal with what's next."  "Put your bra on...then we'll deal with what's next."
Once I got everything on, the next step was getting out of the house.  I ended up walking around my apartment with my shoes on for about an hour, then took them off, thinking I would just stay in.  I hung around for another hour and decided to put the shoes on again and get the eff out.  I brought my phone with me; catching up on calls was a good excuse to keep me occupied outside.
I called my Aunt Paula to make plans to see my cousin in a play on Sunday.  The wheels were turning in the back of my mind as to how I could finesse my way out of this commitment.  Ultimately, I went.  My cousin Cam is a special needs kid, and was doing an all special needs production of High School Musical.  What kind of heartless person could pass that up?  I had fun being with my family.  As usual, it was worth it.
Back to the walk.  I called my sister afterward and told her how I was feeling.  She asked if maybe we got this kind of thing from Mom, who vascillates wildly between being overly social and anti-social, who spent many an afternoon, evening and weekend holed up in bed.  We talked about how this feeling overcomes both of us sometimes and how it can be difficult to put ourselves out there.  Manda, sorry if I'm speaking on your behalf - feel free to rip me in the comments.  I think both of us are conscious of this and try to get around it, to not be like Mom.
I stayed home from work on Monday and Tuesday.  I was feeling sick, but mostly I took it as an opportunity to get this funk out of my system.  There's only so much daytime television I can withstand before craving fresh air and human contact again.
I slept for hours, ate lots of sugar free popsicles, took lots of baths, and let my hair build up 2.5 days worth of grease (which, with my thin hair, is like 5 days of grease in people days).  Speaking of which, I'm losing hair - frequently.  It's a result of surgery that I expected, and now's about the time for it to happen.  I don't know whether to comb my hair or my sink, since most days it's hard to tell which is more hairy.  Each week I can add another twist of the elastic to my shrinking ponytails.  It'll grow back, but until it does, I might have to get a mom haircut.
I've taken to making lists to get through my day.  Here's my after-work to-do list from the other day, seriously:  take vitamin, do dishes, pack lunch, crossword, dinner, brush teeth, change, make bed, go to shelter, go see the show.  What's funnier is that I actually made one list, started inserting things I forgot, then crossed it all out and started a new list.  This was a special evening, since I was going to volunteer at the shelter, then see my friend's show.  It was going to be a long night, and I had to list the little steps to get me out the door.  Proudly, I made it to the shelter for my 8-10 pm shift, but I flaked on my friend's 10:30 pm show.  I want to make the excuse that it was on a weeknight, and the show was too late.  But dang it, I made the list so I could COMMIT.  I guess I should be happy I made it as far as I did, but I was trying so hard to use that momentum to finish what I planned to do.
Well, this is another week, and I need to live it.  Tonight, I promised I would scrub my floors - my hairy, hairy floors.  Let's see if I can do this one right.
So there's that,