So I am getting around to writing up my journey so far, I just have not had the inclination to do any writing about my Cancer, and so this will bring things up to date as of my surgery and I promise to get some other post wrote over the next couple of weeks, just in time for some Christmas reading.
I had the surgery on October 5th, a date forever etched in my mind, according to my surgeon it went well and the prostate came out clean and did not see evidence of travel, we will not know if that is correct until we get the pathology report around the same time my catheter comes out.
The pathology report gives a much more detailed exam of the prostate as they now have the whole thing and not just the 10 samples they took from my biopsy.
So here we are a look back starting on the morning of October 5th, 2021 it started off early, got up, went for a walk as I knew it would be a while before I would get to have some good walks. I was not allowed any solids after midnight, so I had some water and around 8:15am Jenn took me to the hospital.
This is the bit that got me, to be going through what we are going through and only be allowed to be dropped off to go for surgery really upset me. Jenn was pretty upset and I tried to be strong, but I was pretty upset inside.
As this is my blog and I can write what I want I am saying to all these anti-vax, anti-science fools, you are the reason I was alone during one of the scariest times of my life. Your ignorance is affecting people with cancer, heart issues, young children and more. You are selfish, pathetic and don’t deserve to have the nice things that we as a community get. This Tweet struck a chord with me.
This small-minded, small minority group is causing so much pain in their attempt to promote their agenda, which I still cannot figure out. They say freedom, but I am free and they are free to choose, they are just choosing not to listen to educated people, to people who have spent their career trying to solve medical puzzles and coming up with answers, the same type of people that discovered a polio vaccine, yellow fever, measles and the list goes on. How many times have some of these people gone to the hospital or their doctor with an alignment and been prescribed a medicine that they just took, they did not go looking on Facebook for conspiracies, they just trusted the Doctors and scientists. They seem to been wrapped up in this world that the government is out for them, sure if this was Afghanistan for sure I would not trust them, or Russia or Argentina, but for heavens sake some countries are beyond that.
Anyhow, I will step down from my soapbox and get on with my surgery day.
Once Jenn dropped me off I went through main admitting and was told to go up to the second floor and check-in there. Here I was weighed, blood pressure checked and changed into my wonderful hospital gear, my valuables were then locked up, then it was a waiting game.
My surgery was scheduled for 10:35 am, so around 10:15 am a nurse came and got me, allowed me to use the bathroom, locked up my phone and took me to the Operating Room, well a bed outside the OR, they gave me a heated blanket and I waited, a nurse came out and asked why I was there, double-checking so they did not remove my leg in error. The anesthesiologist assistant came out and inserted a cannula and within 5 minutes I was walking into the operating room to be asked to lay on the table, bare-bottomed, I then was covered in some very get warm blankets, so cozy!!
It was a small operating room, smaller than when I had my bypass surgery a few years ago, there were a few nurses doing prep work. Again I was asked who I was etc. my urologist came in and said hi and then that was it, next thing I knew I was waking up in recovery, such a fascinating experience as close to 3 hours had passed by.
I don’t remember much of recovery, my only real memory was leaving to go to the ward and stopping on the way to remove my belongings from the lock-up.
Once in the ward, which was a day surgery ward now being used for overnights, I was asked if I was feeling pain, I totally understand the pain thing now, all about the scale and you should never really let it get above 7/8 as it becomes harder to bring it down. This was one of my learning experiences from past hospital stays.
One of the nurses got my headphones, iPad and phone out. I then asked if I could have visitors as due to covid the admitting nurse did not know as it changed daily, fortunately, I was allowed one visitor, so I texted Jenn to let her know the good news, she promptly jumped in the car and came down to see me. YAY.
The rest of the day was spent visiting with Jenn, watching movies, listening to podcasts and of course, getting my vitals checked regularly by the amazing nursing staff. Oh and of course dinner, a liquid diet right now.
One thing I had learned from being in a hospital before was the need to reduce the noise, particularly of a night. I had purchased a good set of noise-cancelling headphones a couple of years ago before going to the UK. These save you, they really do. Hospitals wards are not quiet places, people are in pain, nurses are taking vitals, people are coming and going, so to reduce all that clatter putting on a set of noise-cancelling headphones can really help with recovery.
So at midnight when Gordon, my nurse for the night, came to take my vitals he asked if he could get anything for me, I needed some pain meds but also asked for some sleeping tablets. Shortly thereafter he came with meds which I took, then put on my headphones playing some soothing oceans waves. This combination worked well as the next thing I am being tapped by Gordon at 5 am as he had come to take my vitals, between the sleeping meds and the headphones as I was in my own space, same again at 7 am when they came to take some blood for tests, tap tap tap, Mr. Bowen!!
Sometime around 9 am my urologist came around to see how I was, at this point I was feeling good, he told me things went well and he thought they had got caught the cancer before it has spread outside the prostate. He also said if I felt good after lunch I could go home, after one night that would be awesome.
Around noon a nurse came and went over how to look after my new friend, well one of them, yes when you get your prostate out they have to cut your urethra and join it back to together, to allow for recovery you have to have a catheter in, I was told it would be in for 3 weeks, yikes I thought as I had been reading a week to ten days, so 3 weeks was a downer.
Thanks for documenting your journey. It is brave and will help someone who is going through a similar experience understand what to expect. I hope you are doing well in your recovery. Cheers from Australia, Amanda