May. 21st, 2009

Better

May. 21st, 2009 06:49 am
For the first time in over a week, I've just had a good night's sleep.

As far as I can tell, the second op has had the desired effect - I haven't yet seen Dr Bellringer, who was apparently due to talk to me about it yesterday, but the pain has faded enough to be easily manageable. Before yesterday's surgery, I was at the stage of spending the hours hitting my maximum morphine dosage and then watching the clock intently to see when I could have some more. Since the latest op, I haven't been using much analgesic at all - I haven't had a single shot in the last ten hours. This is joyous, not least because I've come to the conclusion that I really don't like morphine. I don't find its effects on me especially appealing, and I'm really beginning to dislike not having the use of my left hand. I probably ought to have mentioned that I'm left-handed before they put the drip in, but from what I understand, they have to set the drip up on the left of the bed as standard. It *has* given me the opportunity to practice various activities with my bad hand only - having fully assembled a woodcraft construction kit squirrel (thank you, princessdanae!), I'm feeling rather pleased with myself.

In spite of the pain (the removal of the surgical drains on Tuesday was the single most agonising experience of my life), I've spent my time post-op feeling better than I can remember feeling, and very happy. I feel so *peaceful*. I woke up bathed in light this morning (I'm fortunate in having been given the bed nearest the window in my room), and I just lay here enjoying the sensation of warmth falling onto my body.

As far as I can tell, this room contains six beds altogether (I haven't really been able to get up and check!). When I was wheeled in here after the operation, all of those beds were occupied by trans women, most of whom had had their surgery the week before and were almost ready to be discharged. We were a diverse group of characters, and we got on well together. In some ways, it was strangely like being at boarding school. Those who were relearning how to walk would visit those of us who could scarcely move, and explain in graphic detail what to expect in the coming days. Social graces were turned on their head: to compare wounds was a polite greeting (well, it was helpful to see that you weren't the only person whose bruises had bruises). Truly is it said that the collective noun for a group of trans women is a TMI. I exchanged mobile numbers with two of the others before they left; there are now only two of us remaining, and the other beds are occupied by patients with a diversity of conditions.

The nurses here are very friendly; and the food is surprisingly good, with easily enough vegetarian options on the menu to keep me going for the next week. It's looking like they'll leave it until Monday to take the pack out of my vagina; my discharge from hospital is likely to be next Wednesday. This all depends on what happened during the second op. For somebody who had never been admitted to hospital before Sunday, I feel as though I've been thrown in at the deep end - two ops in three days, with the chance to sample the work of both surgeons, Mr Thomas and Mr Bellringer. It's a strange sort of holiday.

Thank you to everybody who has come to visit me - it's meant *so* much to have my friends around me for this. *Much, much love to all of you*.

Oh, yes - I ought to rest a little now; I keep forgetting how weak I am at present. I'll update again as soon as I can next get the WiFi working....
I can walk! I can walk - it's amazing, and makes me feel so accomplished. I've walked to the toilet and back a few times today, and even made an exciting voyage to the reception desk of the Riverside Wing to see my lovely flowers! I can walk, (and it hurts and I'm so weak and I'm left gasping at the end of each little excursion, but...) I can walk!

The surgeon came and checked my wound this morning, and told me that it's all looking fine now - the second op really has sorted everything out, and I'm back on course with my recovery. I'm not hurting much now, and they've taken the morphine drip away (which has really helped with mobility). If all goes well, my recovery now ought to be fairly uneventful until they remove the pack on Monday.

More joyous visitors today, too. I really am being terribly spoilt at the moment :)

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sallyalice

September 2009

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