Monday, August 09, 2010

Blood and Guts

I really can't believe I skipped two days of NaBloPoMo. Well, I mean, I can, because (as David would say) I was "flat out" working and certainly didn't have a free moment. But it's not like me to renege on this commitment--I never have before.

So, if I were Jarrah right now, I'd be a bit green, because I would have just seen the inside of my body, with blood and guts and whatnot. Let me explain.

For a long time, I've been wanting to get a little something removed. A lump, if you must know. And since everyone's brain shoots straight to "breast" when they hear "lump," I will tell you quite candidly that this lump had nothing to do with breasts.

The lump had gotten larger of late, and I finally decided to have it looked at. The scenario was a bit like the three bears. The first doctor said "Too hot!" The second doctor said "Too cold!" The third doctor said "Just right!" Only not really. But I did see two doctors before getting one who was actually willing to whip out his knife.

And that was today. Sort of unfortunate timing, since I'd been up all weekend (more on that later) but it took a month to get the appointment so I didn't want to change it. David has had many lumps removed (he's the Mole King) so he briefed me on what would likely go down. He was completely accurate.

I lay on the table while the doctor quizzed me (you might think I'm just referring to questions about my situation, but I am in earnest: he quizzed me, the whole time, with various math problems. Many of you know that's not really my area, but I got 100 percent!) and then he said:

"Okay, this part you're definitely not going to like." And he was correct about that. I received about six shots, and they were increasingly owie. I didn't cry, though, and for that I am proud.

Next, the nurse came in and told me I wouldn't feel anything except tugging and thread. She was also correct. I felt tugging and tried not to think about how this would be the knife (the doc drew a diagram of how he would cut; the picture looked like an almond-shaped eye) and then I felt thread for a long time, but by then I was working hard on my math problems and had to focus. Within 10 minutes, he was done.

The nurse told me about the things she was putting on the wound--"Steri-strips," and a word I didn't catch that means water-proof bandage, and gauze, and then tape.

The rest of the day, I didn't feel a lick of pain. That was pleasing. I was extremely tired, so I snacked, read, grocery-shopped and then napped. You know, just like plowing fields or running marathons--really taxing stuff.

Which is why it was a bit disconcerting when I noticed the gauze was coming off and the thing underneath was soaked in blood. I drove to pick Jarrah up from camp and called the doctor from the parking lot. He said to come in right away. I must admit I panicked a bit. I didn't want to go back, and certainly not with Jarrah. To make things more exciting, it was one of those "man, I took things for granted before I was a parent" days when she had wet her pants and not told anyone and was being very resistant to changing her clothes in the camp bathroom, even though the clock was ticking away to the time when the doctor and the nurses would have to go home (we made it with seven minutes to spare.)

I was sweating when we reached the office, and I told Jarrah she could come in with me or stay in the waiting room, but if she came in, she might see something gross. She said she'd come in. Frankly, I think she was counting on seeing something gross.

She wasn't disappointed. The wound had reopened, the stitches had come undone, and not only had the waterproof bandage come off, all the Steri-Strips had, too. I don't know what the doctor was doing but at one point he said "This will burn a little." and right after that Jarrah yelled "Wow! Is that what the inside of the body looks like?" He said "Yes, it does."

I was more than a little glad I couldn't see what they could see. Jarrah seems completely untraumatized by her experience, and on the way home gleefully explained that my open wound was like "looking into the brain, only a lot redder and bloodier than the brain." Lovely.

I'm not supposed to get the stitches out for a week--here's hoping they hold.


Jen said...

Oh, brother! I'm a little green just reading this! :-) But seriously, you poor dear. It's just not convenient to have open wounds as a parent.

I remember once I had to have a mole removed--this was not elective, ugh--and I'd foolishly had it done on a Friday. Friday night rolls around and mine did the same thing, but of course my doc was not around and I'd have had to get myself to the emergency room at like 10:00 at night when Sage was in bed upstairs and bound to wake and want me ANY SECOND. If I'd gone in right then, they probably could have just sewn it up again. But because I waited till the next day (a humane hour to go to the doctor when one has small kids), they could not do that (it had been open too long) and so I ended up with a bit more of a scar. It was devastating to my fragile vanity, let me tell you! :-)

Anyway, I'm glad the whole experience was edifying for Jarrah!

Caroline said...

I love Jarrah. That is an awesome response. Sorry about your adventure with the mole. I hope all goes well from now on.

Myrnie said...

Ugh! Sorry, what an intro to blood and guts for the little miss! Hope you're healing well now!

Type (little) a said...

ouch! i would freak out if i thought my stitches were coming undone.

Stephanie said...

I had a mole removed with much less pomp and circumstance, they pulled on it a bit and cut it off with a pair of scissors. Yes, and then they offered me the scissors as a souvenir, pitching them as great sewing scissors.

Jennifer said...

Oh my! Jarrah is awesome! As for you, I'm sorry you had to go back in...ugh! I had surgery several years ago and my incision opened up and my surgeon was on vacation. The doctor who was treating his patients told me they couldn't get me in for 2 days...hellloooo...I could not wait 2 days. I went to my regular family doctor and he ended up gluing my incision back together after he cleaned it all out. It had become infected. No fun.

My advice...Keep that wound clean and take it easy!

Aunt LoLo said...

Oh my. That Jarrah is something else, isn't she?! Wow....

Girl, stay still, keep your head elevated, and eat plenty of ice cream. Doctor's orders.....

Cheri @ Blog This Mom!® said...

Oh. My. God.

First of all, Laura would have been fascinated by the sight of all of that just like Jarrah.

Second of all, WHAT? The stitches came undone?! WHAT?

Third, six shots? WHAT? Yikes.

You poor little dear.

When the doctor (not the hot one) removed my toenail for the THIRD time (in June), he started describing to me what he was about to do, and I asked him to stop that this instant. Then he asked me if I wanted to look. I may or may not have shouted when I said, "NO! ARE YOU KIDDING ME?"

Joan said...

Hope you mend well. Jarrah may make a fine nurse one day, or brain surgeon, or forensic pathologist. Or perhaps she will just love reading true crime.

The Wades said...

Couldn't see it, huh? I'm drawing my own conclusions to its location. Sounds painful. Good job getting it checked! I know where your mind goes.

Jarrah is hilarious. Glad she was intrigued.

Happy to see so many posts here. I'm gonna have fun.

Anonymous said...

Hope you're feeling much better soon! (That Jarrah, maybe with no squeamishness about blood and the "insides" of people, she'll make a little doctor one day...) xx Lix

Mary said...

Hoping you are feeling better!

Big hugs!