Tag Archives: sickness

Going Under the Knife (Part 2)

…so, last Friday was the day.

Picked SC up from school and then he (along with my dad) dropped me at the hospital. I gave him a big hug and good night kiss (SC, not my dad), and assured him I would be home before he woke up in the morning.

Oh, how wrong could I have been?

I assumed, my surgery would be around 6pm, wake up about 8pm, recover from the anaesthetic and be up and out of the hospital by 11pm at the latest.

What I didn’t bargain on was the doctor before running late or indeed the effect of the general anaesthetic combined with morphine on me!

Thankfully, whilst I waited in my warm room, I had the television for company – otherwise I would have gone stir crazy. Nothing to do, no one to talk to, just 4 walls.

I met the anaesthetist, who told me what they would do, I kind of glossed over him mentioning the use of morphine, as I was more concerned with telling him to make sure I woke up! And then I met my gynaecological consultant who confirmed what she would be doing.

I was amazed at the number of times I was asked when I last ate, if I had any loose teeth, fillings, metal plates, etc. I know it’s just ensuring everything is dotted and crossed as it should be.

Anyway, I eventually walked down to theatre (not the kind I’m used to entering, even though I was sporting a rather, highly amusing pair of surgical knickers – they were fairly frilly) at 8:25pm.

I lay on the trolley and they inserted a drip in my arm. Now I’ve had general anaesthetic 3 times in the past (tonsils, wisdom teeth and chest surgery), and each time I have felt the cold knock-out drug make it’s way up my left arm and have never got beyond 6 when counting back from 10. This time was the first, and I swear to God the last, time I have had a mask put over my face. It was oxygen and then the knock-out drops got mixed up in there and the last thing I remember was the anaesthetist saying “take a deep breath. Good night!”

Now, I can’t bear anything being put over my face or around my neck (I reckon I must have met a grisly end in a previous life), so being knocked out with a mask freaked me somewhat.

Still, next thing I knew, I was coming round in my room, with a nurse and the consultant at the bedside. I was drifting in and out of consciousness as the consultant was trying to tell me what she’d done – pretty much everything that had been on the list – 2 cameras shoved in at various points, destined to meet in the middle, removal of an ovarian cyst (which was nice and clear, so nothing to worry about), and removal of many polyps, then finally the endometrium removal. Joyous! I vaguely remember her trying to show me the photos as well.

At this point I was more concerned about getting back to SC, but the nurse phoned my mum who said at 11pm at night I might as well stay in the hospital.

I had some very jazzy leg pumps on – they are designed to keep blood pumping around your legs to stop you developing DVT – and they are hilarious. You feel tight squeezes up one leg, and then it releases, before it repeats the squeezing on the other leg. If you can’t get to sleep, the rhythmic quality of it would definitely help.

I was in and out of consciousness for ages, and the blood pressure was being monitored at regular intervals. At one point it must have dipped really low, as the nurse said I needed oxygen. I was alert enough to say not to put it over my face, so the oxygen mask was left to rest on my chest, until the blood pressure reached it normal fairly low level.

It was about 1am when the sickness started. I felt it, pressed the buzzer for the nurse who got to the door and I just said “sick!” and she dived for a ‘friend bowl’ which I pretty much kept hold of all night after that, and most of the next morning.

By about 3am I drifted right off to sleep and woke up, totally alert, about 6am.

Then the Kylie episode started!

I had to go to the bathroom, so the nurse helped me sit up. Oh boy! Was I spinning around? The room didn’t stop – then of course I started being ill again.

It pretty much took me 5 hours to sit upright, never mind getting up and walking.

And because they wouldn’t let me go home until I had managed to eat, and keep down, at least a slice of toast, I had to have an anti-sickness injection.

I eventually left around 2pm and spent the rest of weekend doing very little.

Still, it’s done. Hopefully, I won’t have to have anything else done and my hormones will get back to some kind of normality. I shall await the outcome at my follow-up appointment next week.

Maybe I should go and sit on a mountain-top for 6 months?

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The Theatre, The Theatre…

…there’s nothing like the theatre!theatre masks

I love it!

Watching it, doing it, breathing it, sleeping it.

It’s what I do.

I’ve been involved with performing arts for as long as I can remember (and probably a good few years before that too).

My mum took me to ballet classes when I was 2½. Not because she wanted me to be the next Margot Fonteyn, but more that I had far too much energy and she thought it might burn some of it off.

But I loved it.

By the time I was 4, I was doing drama too.

My childhood was spent, literally, doing dancing competitions and dance and drama exams.

I did it because I loved it, not because I was pushed to do it like so many of my friends were. My mum always said if I didn’t like it, I didn’t have to do it. My dancing friends’ mum’s made them do it, mostly because they wanted to see their daughters succeed where they had failed.

I knew I would never be a dancer – too tall for ballet, and entirely the wrong shape – but that didn’t matter, I didn’t want to go to dancing school I was far too academic and liked studying. I just loved to dance, still do in fact. I still try to do some ballet exercise, but these days I tend to do ballroom and latin 😉

Drama, on the other hand, was a completely different kettle of fish.

Oh I loved it, and more than anything I wanted to act for a living. I did go to drama school and got a scholarship, but it was not to be – I still dream that one day Adrian Noble will spy me in a local production and ask me to be in his next production at the National. I know this will never happen, but it’s nice to dream 😉

When I was 15, I branched out and joined the local operatic society. I got to sing, dance and act, all at once in a musical (which were, and still are my most favourite of films to watch). In my twenties I joined the local acting company too.

What a thrill. I could do what I loved, do shows I’d otherwise only ever dream of doing and still go out and earn a living. And more importantly, it was fun.

The one thing that has recently come to light was a conversation I had with a couple of people about am-dram. They were of the firm belief that the only people who did am-dram were those that wanted to show-off, people who want people to look at them.

In my opinion, this is not true of everyone. Oh, I will admit there are some people who do it because they want to show-off and want attention – and in my experience these are the type of people that you see on X-Factor who think they are great, but aren’t (you know the type).

First and foremost am-dram is a hobby. Yes, it takes up a lot of time and energy, but at the end of the day it is just a hobby like golf!

And the first rule of any hobby is enjoyment.

I am not saying that the people who just do it to show-off don’t enjoy it, but that should always be the crux of doing it.

I am not one of those who does it to show-off. I do it because I love it and it’s part of who I am. Even when I haven’t been in shows, I have always been able to find something to do with performing arts.

I am happy skulking around at the back of stage in the chorus, or in a lead role. And I don’t go for leads for the glory. I go for the challenge. the challenge of getting the part and then creating a believable character, getting under their skin, and living in their world for 2 hours – or however long the play is.

And Doctor Theatre is a marvellous tonic, because for those 2 hours, I can stop having to think about my life, and live in a world of imagination and make-believe.

And if I was one of those showy-offy people I wouldn’t get quite so nervous as I do – to the point of sickness. I understand nerves are normal, and I have mechanisms for coping, i.e., doing the same thing every night before a performance, from getting to the theatre at the same time, listening to the same songs in the car, doing the same things in the same order, etc.

But I do not like people staring at me. I hate it! It makes me want to curl up and hide away.

And that’s what a lot of people don’t get, or understand. They say “how come you can go on stage wearing this and doing that, but you don’t want to stand and make a speech?”

The answer is quite simple! If I was making a speech it would be me, when I’m on stage, it’s not me!”

But when it stops being enjoyable, I stop!

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