Update from the Heart of Hess 5

6/24/16
Update from the Heart of Hess:

And now—there is a fever. You know what? Just NO. Not having it. A doctor came this morning and said, “We might get you out of here this weekend!” He just didn’t say aloud that part about the extra-special parting gift of an infection. But that’s okay because Hess didn’t feel bad enough already, and sharing is so important.

***And them some crap happened when this person posted some negative shit and hurt my tender feelings, and then my brother launched an attack of rival-prison-gang-in-the-shower proportions, and a handful of my crew jumped in to assist. It took me a few days to recover.

Update from the Heart of Hess 4

6/23/16
Update from the Heart of Hess:
You all know that I hate to admit failure or even a hint of defeat, right??? Hate it. Right up there with how much I despise Doodie Chowser, M.D., who will never, ever, ever get off my shit list for all of eternity. Ever. What a first-class (insert favorite euphemism for male baby maker)!

I stayed overnight on the cardiac unit, waiting up for the ungodly-early hour of the surgeon’s rounds because—in a normal situation—I’m hard to wake up since I am deaf, and no amount of noise can rouse me from a slumber; but, going on a handful of hours of sleep over the past three days, I knew if I went home and dared the sleep gods, they’d be rolling around in the ether, laughing their asses off until I snapped out of bed around September unless someone broke in the house and threw some coffee and light on me.

Sooo. I wrapped up in some 13-thread-count hospital sheets in the walk-in freezer of the cardiac waiting room all night long and worked on grading graduate-level creative writing assignments, some of which baffled me with passages like, “…the author’s syntax flowed freely because it was in the pattern of normal speech (iambic pentameter).” It could’ve been just the lack of sleep, the bone-numbing cold, the dearth of coffee, the anxiety over how best to inflict my ninja-like attack on Doodie Chowser, M.D., near sun-up. But you tell me. Does that passage say, “I’m a graduate-level writing student about to earn an ‘A’ for my astute grasp of the English language” to you? I don’t know.

Anyway, Doodie.

The shithead breezed in close to 6 AM and breezed out close to 6:01 AM.

He glanced at me with a contempt-sneer I haven’t seen since Leona Helmsley, and answered Hess’s question, “How much danger am I in that I didn’t have the other two bypasses?” with what can best be approximated by the image of a squatting dog and something steamy and pile-y. His retreating reply: “You’ll have to ask the other doctor who diagnosed all the blockages.” Next! Ca-ching!

Mother fuh…

Anyway, all that staying up and not even finishing the stupid grading (<–There’s that defeat I hate admitting. Sigh.) FOR NOTHING.

Poor Hess is groggy and listless and just plain wiped out. We were too dazzled by the reports from so many people that this surgery is such a positive thing (not that it won’t turn out to be as I’m sure it will, and, honestly, what alternative was there?? Duh.). But, the laparoscopic bladder-snatching last year really was an easy recovery, and we just thought this would go the same way. Not prepared at all.

This procedure? NOT minimally invasive. His chest has been gutted like a fish; his ribs and shoulder-blades were separated; his left arm has been sliced open from wrist to elbow to harvest the radial artery; there is some other vein-harvest wound I haven’t even found; and he has really low oxygen, which (along with the chest wounds) makes it hard for him to get a good breath. Plus, the nurse yesterday mentioned that Hess would experience a kind of “male menopause” with this surgery: hot flashes, cold flashes, up-and-down mood swings. All of the things that make for a splendid day. That nurse wasn’t kidding either. You’d think I’d married a middle-aged woman who hasn’t seen estrogen since the first Bush administration. There are moments when regular Hess pops up, so I know he’s going to be all better. I miss my curmudgeon.

Update from the Heart of Hess 3

6/22/16
Update from the Heart of Hess:

(Warning: Contains adult language, adult situations, and full-frontal nudity. And gluten.)

1) Don’t take this wrong: It’s NOT that things are BAD; it’s just that a couple of things are not good. 2) When Dr. Toothy told me that Hess did really well and only had two bypasses, the doctor’s shit-eating grin temporarily scrambled my processing ability, leading to the following misunderstandings: A) Hess only NEEDED two bypasses instead of four; B) Hess was “doing really well;” and C) The doctor was not REALLY a tiny turd, which would make him a cannibal because of that grin.

So, 3) Hess STILL NEEDS THE TWO OTHER @#$! veins fixed, but Doodie Chowser, M.D., failed to mention that tasty tidbit. “Oh, yeah, we got you all opened up there in the chestal area, but we couldn’t find enough suitable veins, so we just fixed the two worst ones, and let’s keep our fingers crossed that those other two hold out until we can get to it. ‘Kay? <<sucks something out of huge teeth>> (probably shit) Freaking kidding me??

And, then, then, 4) the night nurse in the cardiac ICU, whose FB profile I’m pretty sure lists “clubbing baby seals, especially the gimpy ones” under “hobbies,” didn’t have enough time to get my husband some food to take with his pain medication even though it clearly says right there on the label TAKE WITH FOOD TO AVOID AGONIZING NAUSEA, YOU HEARTLESS BITCH because she was way too busy being a heartless bitch. Oh, and she was annoyed when he pushed the nurse button after he got agonizing nausea, which makes perfect sense because that thing was only invented to alert nurses when a patient needs something, and how dare they have pain after open heart surgery and agonizing nausea after taking pain meds without food, the whiny, little fuckers. Man UP. Yeah.

She should be careful I don’t track her down and pull that swingy ponytail of hers so tight she’ll be able to look both ways at the red light without moving her head. Because I so will.

5) After Hess was moved into a regular room late this afternoon – and BTW, I thought it was TUESDAY, but it’s freaking WEDNESDAY, which means I’ve lost an entire day!! Gaaaaaaaaaah!!! – I noticed that there were no little puff-up thingies on his legs; you know, those medical devices designed to prevent blood clots in patients who’ve had major surgery, especially when there’s a high risk of blood clots? Those things? Yeah, none of those on the potentially clotty legs. WTH? The admittedly nicer nurse said, “Oh, sure. He can have those if you want him to.” What? Was I finger-spelling too fast for you? Did you miss class the day y’all went over post-surgical procedures to prevent deadly blood clots and horrible, horrible lawsuits if anything happens to my husband??

Anyway, after an eternity, two nurses installed the anti-clot things, which look like thigh-high gladiator boots and would be all sexy and on trend if they weren’t Kelly green with Velcro closures. Half an eternity later, after Hess noticed that only the right one was working, Nice Nurse plugged in the left one too (!) so both legs can be, you know, protected; and now Hess is hugging his big, red, heart-shaped pillow to ease the pain of his incisions and injured ribs while he hacks and coughs to prevent pneumonia, another post-surgical concern. I’m honestly thankful for modern medicine and that Hess is alert and healing. Really, I am. One day, we’re going to look back on this and laugh. I just know it.

Update from the Heart of Hess 2

6/21/16, 8:55 AM
Update from the Heart of Hess:

Okay, peeps: Hess is going to be wheeled into the OR area shortly. Cardiologist just popped in all preppy in his pink button-down, saying he’s “hoping for a good result,” and I think that dude might want to bone up on his pre-surgery pep-talk skills.

6/21/16, 11:19 AM
Update from the Heart of Hess:

Hmmm. The hospital in FL is VERY different than in Indy, where there was a big screen on every wall with surgery-patient updates like airport flight boards. Here, there is, like, a 100-year-old town crier who gave me this update on Hess after the first hour in surgery: “She’s doing great.” So. Yeah.

6/21/16, 11:20 AM
Update from the Heart of Hess:

I haven’t chewed off my finger nails in decades, and now. Now, I have ten, little bloody stumps.

6/21/16, 11:22 AM
Update from the Heart of Hess:

Ohhh. There is a super chatty woman here in the cardiac unit waiting room who just found out that I’m deaf, and she somehow got the idea that I communicate by finger spelling. Which she is now doing. Verrrrrrry slowly. Annnnnnnnd, that’s not a “g.” Dear God.

6/21/16, 11:29 AM
Update from the Heart of Hess:

So, since I can only imagine what’s happening in the OR, I’m pretty sure that the vein-harvesting part is over. Hess is going to be so mauled. Poor baby.

6/21/16, 12:43 PM
Update from the Heart of Hess:

Waiting. Waiting. Waiting. Here in the Waiting Room. #lazyplacenames

6/21/16, 8:57 PM
Update from the Heart of Hess:

Okay, so at about 1:00 this afternoon, when the big-toothed doctor explained that Hess did “really well” in surgery and that I could go see him soon in recovery, I think, first, that the doctor doesn’t have a clear handle on what “soon” means (which is not two hours, Toothy), and that he might have been comparing how much agony Hess would be in if he were thrown into a wood chipper v. the reality that is “after one’s chest has been split open.”

He is in the Cardiac ICU, where they strongly encourage family/friends “not to feel obligated” to take advantage of the visiting hours (although screw that; I went twice anyway.) And I’m glad that I did because large amounts of morphine are not—not—helping my sweetie. He kept trying to tell me something, but A) he has a tube shoved down his throat; B) I’m deaf and really, really need to be able to read his lips; and C) he has a lisp anyway, so combine that with A & B, and you can see the problem, can’t you?? I couldn’t figure out what the heck word started with “th,” and I thought he might be thirsty.

Finally, FINALLY, I semi-hollered, “Gah, I think he’s saying he’s ‘sick!’ Is that right, Darling? Are you nauseated??” Vigorous-ish head nodding ensued, followed by immediate IV anti-nausea medicine, followed by a much-too smug pat on my own back for my wicked lip-reading skills. But, the baby is sick, dadgummit, and what if I hadn’t gone back down there?? That nurse with her “Now, we don’t want you to talk with the tube in your throat, Mr….Mr. Yulritch.” would never in a million years have noticed that he was feeling vomity!!! Is he supposed to do charades or something? Pictionary? They don’t even have markers. I’m not allowed back in until 11:00 AM, but you can bet your sweet ass that I’ll have mine jiggling at the door at 10. Maybe 9.

6/21/16, 9:31 PM
Update from the Heart of Hess:

Lord, really? Really? It has been a DAY, and I do not think that now is the time for the puppy to hump his much, much larger stuffed animal with such…house-shaking passion. #myeyesmyeyes

Update from the Heart of Hess 1

6/17/16
Update from the Heart of Hess:

I have been remiss in my Updates from the Heart of Hess over the last day or so while waiting for some news—any news—from the surgeon. (I apologize, family & friends, for not being on top of the messages.) At last, today, the doc popped in to confirm surgery is on for Monday morning. Let the full-body shave commence!!! (Ouch.)

6/18/16
Update from the Heart of Hess:

Never, ever announce with conviction the date of surgery because until the patient is in the OR, anesthetized into physical insensibility, and the first scalpel line is drawn, the plan is about as certain as Khloe Kardashian’s paternity.

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