*** Disclaimer these hospital blogs are going to be information heavy and will have some interesting graphic moments but I will always have a warning before these just in case you yourself will be having these procedures and you don't want to know in depth about them or that graphic explanation just isn't your thing - its my thing and I read a lot about it and felt so informed before I went through this but I know its not everyone's cup of tea ***
No matter how much you prepare yourself for being taken into hospital for any kind of procedure never mind a major one will prepare you for all of the emotions you are going to feel. The first day for me was one of the hardest, there's something weird about sitting in a ward on a bed surrounded by people who have been for surgery that week and you are sitting there "not sick yet" My first experience of walking into that ward knowing I was going to become an inpatient for at least a week was kind of bitter sweet, 1 because I have waited so long for this to happen, But the surroundings were familiar to me because my mum had been treated there a lot when I was younger so I knew my way around the hospital, but entering that ward as the impatient was daunting.
Like I said I had waited a long time for this operation, waiting even longer after it being canceled on the day of admission two months before, so I've had a lot of time to go over this in my head, what the place was going to look like, what kind of people would be there, hoping for good nurses etc and also really hoping for a private room - I'm not an anti-social person but I am a proud one and wasn't looking forward to any signs of losing any kind of dignity (which you can imagine in the next week happened multiple times ) In hindsight I' m glad I was in a ward and in particular the ward I was put in.
So in I go through the big brown and glass doors, (at this point there was still a little part of me expecting yo be told not today Lee-anne and sent home again but no I get to reception give my name and I'm told room 8 will be my home. First impression of room 8 shocked me slightly as I was going in for a brain operation I was expecting lots of other people in my room to be going through a similar thing with bandages on their shaved heads but I was wrong apart from one lovely woman who was in the bed next to me before being discharged two days later everyone else was in for spinal issues and surgeries. When i walked in it was obvious everyone had been there for at least a few days as everyone was laughing and joking and on first name terms this made me smile yet instantly uneasy as i was the newbie! I sat with one of my Best friends for a bit and we just took in what was going on around us. I already knew from that point on that I had been admitted into an interesting ward.
about 20 minutes later a new person was admitted into the bed across from me and I instantly had the sigh of relief of not being the only newbie now and gave a little nod of welcome/help me (And help me she did but I'll get to that later) so next up was paperwork time, This is where they ask you every question under the sun about yourself ... some that you struggle to answer as it becomes like a quick fire round. I passed the test got my name band on and my lovely bright red in your face I HAVE ALLERGIES band and that was it - OFFICIAL RESIDENT OF ROOM 8.
This was also the day where I met my anesthetist for my procedure the following day , I was having my ICP Bolt (Inter-cranial pressure monitor) fitted the next day. The lovely Dr who introduced himself as the man who will put me to sleep the next day looked at me strangely as I replied can you not please" his reply " Can I not put you to sleep? you would like a local?" Here is the beginnings of my interesting personality starting to shine through. I am a singer I teach full time and use my voice a lot, having tubes down my throat isn't so cool, and I had already decided if it was possible to have it done under local I would because it saves all the hassle and the after general sickness - that I now only know too well!. The lovely doctor said ok ill ask your surgeon but if he says no then I will see you tomorrow and remember you can always tap out at any point that will always be an option to which I nodded and smiled but in my head said No Chance I'm tapping out!
By this point I had made a pal on the ward, Joyce my fellow newbie. She very quickly became my hype guy, my confidant and fellow eye roller/face puller for the duration of our stay - when she heard I had asked for a local I became increasingly worried as her face mirrored the anesthetists and they all were looking at me like I had two heads..... there was nothing really left to that night except to have some Coffee and toast and get some rest! *Spoiler alert* sleeping on a ward is near impossible but sleeping on a ward with a dose of pre-op nerves there's no chance.