Best Flame Out Ever! (Or maybe not). November 10, 2009 6:29 AM   Subscribe

I go in for surgery in a couple of hours to have a tumor removed from my neck. I'm getting a parotidectomy (link not safe for breakfast).

I was going to spend some time thanking some people for pretty much being the people they are, for amusing me, or challenging me, pointing out interesting stuff, or giving me the information I needed, but honestly I don't have that kind of time and I don't want to leave someone out. So to the community as a whole I'll say thanks.

I fully expect to make it, but in the event I don't it's been worth the $5. I feel much better about the surgery after reading this askme answer.

This place has been great for me the last couple of weeks especially.

Thanks.
posted by cjorgensen to MetaFilter-Related at 6:29 AM (174 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

Best of luck old bean!
posted by turgid dahlia at 6:32 AM on November 10, 2009


I'm sending positivity your way. Stay strong and believe.
posted by Go Banana at 6:34 AM on November 10, 2009


You'll be in my thoughts, dude.
posted by gman at 6:35 AM on November 10, 2009




Good luck!
posted by gaspode at 6:46 AM on November 10, 2009


Sending good thoughts your way!
posted by typewriter at 6:47 AM on November 10, 2009


Be sure to update, or have someone update for you, when you can.
posted by netbros at 6:49 AM on November 10, 2009


I just wanted to say, good luck; we're all counting on you.
posted by backseatpilot at 6:53 AM on November 10, 2009 [10 favorites]


Take care, it's going to be okay. Best of luck.
posted by chococat at 6:54 AM on November 10, 2009


All available body parts are crossed. Good luck!
posted by crankylex at 7:00 AM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


All my best: and thank you for what you have given us, thus far.
posted by psylosyren at 7:05 AM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Best of luck! I'm sure you'll be back and posting in no time.
posted by boo_radley at 7:06 AM on November 10, 2009


We expect to see you doing a ton of posting during your recovery period. Good health
posted by Think_Long at 7:07 AM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck! Looking forward to seeing you back!
posted by headspace at 7:08 AM on November 10, 2009


Hope things go 100%! See you back here soon.
posted by milestogo at 7:11 AM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck! I look forward to your first post-surgery post.
posted by cerebus19 at 7:13 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck!
posted by geekyguy at 7:17 AM on November 10, 2009


Rock on, fella.
posted by Jofus at 7:20 AM on November 10, 2009


Here's to an optimal recovery!
posted by owtytrof at 7:20 AM on November 10, 2009


Based on your second link, if you don't make it, you can go to your grave knowing that you thoroughly goatsed the doctors that killed you.

Yes, it's black humor. It means good luck.
posted by stet at 7:21 AM on November 10, 2009


You'll be back, even if we have to storm the gates of heaven and drag you back.

Seriously, good luck and good recovery.
posted by Halloween Jack at 7:26 AM on November 10, 2009


Best to you. Come back soon.
posted by applemeat at 7:28 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck and stay well! Here's hoping you won't have to wear the cone for more than a couple days.
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:36 AM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Best of luck. We wouldn't let you do this if you weren't going to come out just fine.

(I know, but I always found that comforting when my parents said it.)
posted by palliser at 7:36 AM on November 10, 2009


Here's to a speedy recovery!
posted by briank at 7:39 AM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck to you.
posted by Sailormom at 7:40 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck.
posted by The Whelk at 7:42 AM on November 10, 2009


bucketfuls of good wishes cjorgensen! I've always appreciated your comments.
posted by anitanita at 7:43 AM on November 10, 2009


good luck. and when the doctor says to take it easy after coming out of the anesthetic, listen to them. Puking from nausea is not going to be a good idea.
posted by Ghidorah at 7:54 AM on November 10, 2009


I imagine you're more than a little anxious, so I thought I would say that I understand this and you have ever right to feel nervous. I would feel nervous also.

I'm grateful that you feel such a sense of community here that you would come to us right now in the same way you might go to friends or family in closer geographic proximity. This is an implied compliment we should all be very thankful to receive!

I imagine anticipation has called to mind countless questions about your own mortality and your understanding of the meaning of life and death, sickness and health, the concrete physical world and the potential metaphysical world. Obviously I'm no one to comment on your feelings about any of those important questions, but I want to validate their likely presence on your mind.

There's a part of me that always wants to offer petty assurances, but we both know I'm not able to assure you of anything. So take comfort in the assurances from your doctor and from those you've talked to who have traveled where you are traveling now.

And look forward with great anticipation to returning and serving as a compassionate guide for others when they are called upon to that this trip.
posted by jefficator at 7:55 AM on November 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


All the best, man.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:56 AM on November 10, 2009


Ditto Ghidorah. I don't care how thirsty you are, DO NOT drink anything they tell you not to right after the anesthetic. Otherwise you can join my supersecret "throwing up in the pharmacy drive through of Walgreens" club. We'll come up with a secret handshake and everything! Good luck!
posted by bitter-girl.com at 7:56 AM on November 10, 2009


I just wanted to say, good luck; we're all counting on you.
posted by DreamerFi at 8:01 AM on November 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


even if we have to storm the gates of heaven and drag you back.

I've taken the liberty of setting up some SAM launchers around your location (Surface to Angel Missiles) so no worries, you'll be fine.

Seriously, be fine. And let us know when you are recovered; I'm always looking for any excuse to engage in celebratory drunkenness.
posted by quin at 8:05 AM on November 10, 2009


Aw, best of luck! See you soon. :)
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:13 AM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck!
You will be fine. Strength!
posted by Drasher at 8:16 AM on November 10, 2009


See you soon, man.
posted by Skot at 8:24 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck! You're totally going to be fine, of this I am confident. Don't keep us hanging, though!
posted by Admiral Haddock at 8:28 AM on November 10, 2009


You sound scared; I'm sorry for that and glad you posted this. Many hugs and good wishes pointing your way.
posted by Stewriffic at 8:33 AM on November 10, 2009


Thanks for the support everyone. Waiting to get the IV and find out how long I have to wait. Look at what shirt I wore: http://twitpic.com/ozyxx
posted by cjorgensen at 8:35 AM on November 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


Good luck, Sir. We will all be waiting here for your triumphant return.
posted by PROD_TPSL at 8:35 AM on November 10, 2009


Good Luck cj!
posted by jpdoane at 8:46 AM on November 10, 2009


Everything's gonna be all right. Hold tight brother.
posted by Divine_Wino at 8:47 AM on November 10, 2009


MeTumor
posted by ageispolis at 8:47 AM on November 10, 2009


Good health! Sending happy thoughts your way.
posted by Space Kitty at 8:48 AM on November 10, 2009


We're looking forward to more entertaining you on the recovery! Heal well!
posted by iamkimiam at 8:50 AM on November 10, 2009


Once you get the I.V. things kinda blur and you don't have to worry about how long you're waiti-weeble scup groooo
posted by boo_radley at 8:51 AM on November 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Best of luck! I had surgery a few weeks ago, and can relate that the uncertainty of the whole thing is often more scary than the actual procedure.

Make sure to let us know what conversation topic the nurses distracted you with as you were going under, and whether you get any good pain pills!
posted by mikeh at 8:51 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck! Sending good vibes your way.
posted by OolooKitty at 8:52 AM on November 10, 2009


I just wanted to say good luck; we're all counting on you.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 9:10 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck!
posted by Quietgal at 9:11 AM on November 10, 2009


My husband had that very surgery done, over 30 years ago. We were told of the risks; the worst case scenarios. He was fine afterwards, except for a "numbness" around the incision that lasted for maybe 10 years. It is my fondest hope that you, too, will have such excellent results! Good luck!
posted by Lynsey at 9:14 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck!
For what it's worth, I had a thyroidectomy 3 weeks ago. I was terrified going into it, but significantly less than necessary thanks to AskMe (especially that specific wonderful answer by TedW that you linked).
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 9:16 AM on November 10, 2009


Break a leg!

Better yet, I hope the doctors break your leg in an easily repairable way, then the hospital makes you the happy recipient of a six-figure settlement and you can live like a king. KING!
posted by Kattullus at 9:29 AM on November 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


9 figures, man. We'll be in the Rebounding Teens era soon (2010-2019) and he'll need to cruise in style.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:36 AM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck!
posted by Dumsnill at 9:36 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck. See you soon!
posted by palmcorder_yajna at 9:41 AM on November 10, 2009


We'll hold your place here [aside: hey, stop shoving, willya], and you just enjoy the drugs until you're ready to rejoin the fray.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:55 AM on November 10, 2009


We'll be waiting on the other side.
posted by special-k at 9:59 AM on November 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Best of luck, man. Enjoy the meds!
Also, just think about all the soup you'll get to eat.
Mmmmmmmmm, soup!
posted by heyho at 9:59 AM on November 10, 2009


cjorgensen writes "Waiting to get the IV and find out how long I have to wait"

You know you're a hard core Metafilter member when you're posting from the hospital awaiting an IV for surgery.

Good luck man.
posted by Mitheral at 10:04 AM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Don't walk into the light.
posted by GuyZero at 10:08 AM on November 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Good luck, cjorgensen! Mend well.

/eating stack of lucky pancakes in support of cjorgensen
posted by YoBananaBoy at 10:11 AM on November 10, 2009


All the best. Be well.
posted by mightshould at 10:15 AM on November 10, 2009


Us Christophers need to stick together. Hope your shit goes even better than expected. You're in my prayers.
posted by item at 10:24 AM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck man.
posted by eyeballkid at 10:26 AM on November 10, 2009


Dude, I had a parotidectomy two years ago! I saw your Ask question, but if you have any additional questions - I have a tiny bit of numbness, a wicked scar, and a case of the Frey's Syndrome - please memail me.

Feel free to steal my idea for Christmas cards, too - a "before" and "after" shot of the tumor/tumor-hole, and an inscription inside that says "There's a piece of me missing without you this Christmas."
posted by harperpitt at 10:30 AM on November 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


Hope it goes well, and they let you bronze the part they take out. I was always annoyed that they wouldn't let me bronze my appendix after it nearly killed me.
posted by scrump at 10:33 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck & best wishes for a quick recovery!!!
posted by min at 10:35 AM on November 10, 2009


Thought I was way too late to give him a 'good luck/hang in there' message, but he's still twittering from the operating room... In-freaking-credible!
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:36 AM on November 10, 2009


And would it be inappropriate to say whatever drugs the hospital's giving him are resulting in some of his funniest tweets ever?
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:38 AM on November 10, 2009


Hope everything goes well for you. Please, don't head for the realm with the professional white background.
posted by FishBike at 10:38 AM on November 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


Is it too soon to make a "Parotidectomy? How'd you get a parrot stuck in there?" joke?
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 10:42 AM on November 10, 2009


I particularity like this one:

# So would it be wrong of me to take a masturbation break? I mean seriously, it's been hours!
14 minutes ago from API
posted by gman at 10:42 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck! No need to bring back pictures!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:44 AM on November 10, 2009


are you allowed to twitter in the OR?
posted by empath at 10:59 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck, and try not to get banned when posting under the influence of prescription-strength painkillers during the recovery.
posted by burnmp3s at 11:08 AM on November 10, 2009


Can't think of "Pain in the Neck" pun. So. See you in the world of the future (surgery is time travel).
posted by tkchrist at 11:11 AM on November 10, 2009


Be well and come back soon. :)
posted by futureisunwritten at 11:14 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck to the #1 member of the Randazza Society!!

> And would it be inappropriate to say whatever drugs the hospital's giving him are resulting in some of his funniest tweets ever?

I laughed at this one in an "ohhhh noooooo" kind of way:

# Well fuck, did I sign off on this letter wrong or what? http://tinyurl.com/ajuq43
about 2 hours ago from API
posted by cobwebberies at 11:24 AM on November 10, 2009


Good luck!
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:28 AM on November 10, 2009


and try not to get banned when posting under the influence of prescription-strength painkillers during the recovery

Would this invoke the BanScalpel? Excised!
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 11:29 AM on November 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


Hang in there Iowa.
posted by Lutoslawski at 11:31 AM on November 10, 2009


Bonne chance!
posted by hermitosis at 11:31 AM on November 10, 2009


Best wishes for a speedy recovery!
posted by jasper411 at 11:35 AM on November 10, 2009


Way to stick your neck out!

I got nuthin'
posted by Sys Rq at 11:37 AM on November 10, 2009


I had surgery a few weeks ago, and can relate that the uncertainty of the whole thing is often more scary than the actual procedure.

Agreed. Good luck to you!
posted by inigo2 at 11:48 AM on November 10, 2009


Godspeed CJ.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 11:56 AM on November 10, 2009


Viel Glück!
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 12:08 PM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck! Sending good vibes and all that hippie crap your way.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 12:42 PM on November 10, 2009


(You should totally bring the tumor to the next meetup you attend.)
posted by backseatpilot at 12:46 PM on November 10, 2009


If it helps to reassure you at all, one of my friends had this exact same surgery 15 years ago; she recovered quickly and has been totally healthy ever since.

Good luck and please keep us posted!
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:51 PM on November 10, 2009


Good luck!
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 12:57 PM on November 10, 2009


Best wishes.
posted by juv3nal at 1:00 PM on November 10, 2009


Best wishes!
posted by Your Time Machine Sucks at 1:08 PM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck.
posted by starman at 1:13 PM on November 10, 2009


Good luck.
posted by dg at 1:33 PM on November 10, 2009


Yay, it's probably over now, and you will be so happy to have this damn thing behind you. That'll be the best part - that it's finally over.
Hopefully, you are happily and groggily well on your way to recovery at this very minute.
posted by madamjujujive at 1:39 PM on November 10, 2009


Good luck and godspeed.
posted by reenum at 1:39 PM on November 10, 2009


What everyone else said.
posted by rjs at 1:58 PM on November 10, 2009


Sending good thoughts.
posted by amyms at 2:15 PM on November 10, 2009


Best of luck to you.
posted by Smart Dalek at 2:21 PM on November 10, 2009


You are insane to let those maniacs at your neck with knives.

On preview: Best wishes, mend quickly.
posted by longsleeves at 2:24 PM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Like Ozzy, I will see you on the other side!
posted by ignignokt at 2:26 PM on November 10, 2009


Good luck! I hope your recovery goes smoothly.
posted by bewilderbeast at 2:32 PM on November 10, 2009


I just wanted to say, good luck; we're all counting on you.
posted by deborah at 2:43 PM on November 10, 2009


Good luck. Here's to a quick recovery!
posted by defenestration at 2:48 PM on November 10, 2009


You are insane to let those maniacs at your neck with knives.

Yeah, I didn't have time to remind him to Sharpie a big arrow on his neck pointing to his head with the instruction Do Not Remove, but I'm sure everything's fine anyhow.
posted by FelliniBlank at 2:50 PM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Stop wishing him luck! We were at 1/100,000 and looking good. You bastards have gone and watered it down to 1/1000...
posted by twine42 at 2:50 PM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Good luck! I hope you're resting comfortably and enjoying the drugs!
posted by rtha at 3:16 PM on November 10, 2009


Aaaaaaaand he's out! Woot!
posted by hangashore at 3:28 PM on November 10, 2009


We knew you would pull through.

. for your late parotid gland though.
posted by Daddy-O at 4:28 PM on November 10, 2009


It's..... A L I V E..... blink twice if you can read this.
posted by HeyAllie at 4:30 PM on November 10, 2009


Recover quickly and come back to us!
posted by Pope Guilty at 4:32 PM on November 10, 2009


I concur: WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOT!
posted by Kattullus at 4:35 PM on November 10, 2009


blink twice if you can read this.

Done.
posted by inigo2 at 4:40 PM on November 10, 2009


I lived. I also have to pee really realy badly. This is a live update. I'll write more later.

Hooray!!!!

oh man it is so hard to pee after waking up from general....best of luck.
posted by Lutoslawski at 4:46 PM on November 10, 2009


Glad to hear you're out of surgery, cjorgensen. Let the mending begin!

Also, as a fellow veteran of several head and neck surgeries, let me recommend gluing bolts to the scars, a la Frankenstein's monster, for the horrified delight of any family or neighborhood children. (Too bad you didn't have your surgery a week before Halloween! Try to time it better next time, willya?)

Get lots of rest and feel better soon.
posted by scody at 4:49 PM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Have you read down this far yet? Hope you're up and around again soon!
posted by jamaro at 4:50 PM on November 10, 2009


Glad you made it through ok!

The post-op peeing sucks. I had more people touch my junk in 2 hours than in the last two years! But I just couldn't go, so the evil nurse gave me a foley catheter. "You're going to feel a little pressure". Fucking liar. After a few minutes of her inept jabbing and my crying, "please, please get it out of my penis!", she gave up and left me to my tears. An hour later, the shift change, and Nurse #2 threatened me the the catheter again. At that point, I forced myself to squeeze out just enough fire-pee to satisfy the dark mistress of the ICU's terrible thirst.

Oh, and if they're giving you narcotics, don't forget to take the stool softener they'll surely give you a prescription for. Seriously, don't miss a single dose. Don't, for even one moment say to yourself, "nah, I don't need it". Your ass will thank you.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 5:34 PM on November 10, 2009


best wishes......
posted by HuronBob at 5:37 PM on November 10, 2009


Yay!
posted by lunasol at 5:53 PM on November 10, 2009


oh man it is so hard to pee after waking up from general....best of luck.

Indeed. I was having a horrible time with this after my appendectomy. In the end, all it took was the nurse yelling down the hall to the other nurse, "get the catheter!".
posted by gman at 6:11 PM on November 10, 2009


After I got my appendix out, the nurse came in to check on me, told me how to signal for more pain medication if I needed it, and said everything was fine, but if I had to pee in the first four hours they would have to insert a catheter.

"Whoa," I thought, as I glanced past my morphine drip to check out the clock. "I guess I can make that if I hold it." I drifted in and out of consciousness for a while, but I really had to go by about the 3.5 hour mark.

The next time the nurse came in she asked me if I had gone yet. Confused, I said no, I was waiting it out. "Well, it's been almost four hours—if you don't go soon we're going to have to put a catheter in."

I had to use the motorized bed to sit up but once I was on my feet I'll be damned if I didn't run the ten feet to the bathroom, dragging my IV behind me. I'm still not sure why that first nurse lied to me.
posted by Partial Law at 6:14 PM on November 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


Hooray!
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 6:42 PM on November 10, 2009


More good wishes from Tucson--
posted by shetterly at 6:47 PM on November 10, 2009


'Glad to hear it went okay! I hope your recovery is quick, smooth, and easy!
posted by wiskunde at 7:04 PM on November 10, 2009


I just wanted to say, good luck; we're all counting on you.
posted by middleclasstool at 7:21 PM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


I wish you all the best. Take care of yourself and come back soon.
posted by HotPatatta at 7:29 PM on November 10, 2009


Thanks for all the support! I'm posting without having read all the comments yet (yeah, bad form, but I'm sure this one time no one will hold it against me). I think reading them all will have to wait until tomorrow.

I just want to say I was glad the thread survived and I am glad I did as well.

My next askme question is going to be about wearing iPhone earbuds when I look like this. (Link safe for all).

And this is the best metafilter shirt photo ever!

When I went to the Des Moines Meetup I had the appointment for the biopsy the next day. The subjects of epic flameouts came up, and I said, "I have the best one ever planned." I'm sure if jessamyn overhead this she was probably afraid I was actually actively planning such a thing.

I had convinced myself I did indeed have cancer, and due to some anxiety issues revolving around this whole thing, was having occasion breathing problems (I guess they were panic attacks, but I didn't exactly feel panicked, and I'd never had them before). I'd decided if it had been cancer I was going to come up with a way to posthumously post my final post. You have to admit, this would be pretty hard to top as far as flameouts are concerned. I guess this will have to wait another 60 years or so.

I will read your well wishes, and all the one on twitter as well, but I am home, tired, and in a manageable amount of pain.

And glad to see shetterly is back!

And weird, but you can't favorite a comment from the post preview.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:33 PM on November 10, 2009 [17 favorites]


Yay!
posted by schyler523 at 7:48 PM on November 10, 2009


So glad to hear the surgery went well! Here's to a speedy recovery!
posted by lilac girl at 7:59 PM on November 10, 2009


Good luck to you!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:21 PM on November 10, 2009


Dude, I had to come back, if only to leave you a comment. You've got my birth date, and I would gank your profile's "about" in an instant if I thought I could get away with it.

The only gratuitous advice I've got is to really baby yourself now. If people want to do favors for you, no matter how big or small, accept them. If they don't, ask them. I know way too many people who push themselves too hard when they should just be recovering at the pace nature and their medical advisors prefer.
posted by shetterly at 8:26 PM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


and in a manageable amount of pain.

Here's hoping they've set you up with some percodan. Nothing wrong with being a junkie for a few days ... when you've got your reasons.
posted by philip-random at 8:31 PM on November 10, 2009


Hey, I had surgery today too! (On my arm, to (hopefully) relieve pressure on the median nerve after my tendon reattachment in May. Hope we both recover nicely!
posted by nicwolff at 8:34 PM on November 10, 2009


YAY! Thanks for the update. So glad you're feeling better, cjorgensen, and that the surgery went well. You, too, nicwoolf!
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:37 PM on November 10, 2009


cj, there's a word for how you look with the bandage wrapped around your noggin like that... egghead...

have you checked to make sure they didn't remove your ears?

then again, with a longer wrap, you could have rabbit ears... or jackass ears.

recover well and relax...
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:56 PM on November 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Glad you'll be ok.
posted by brujita at 9:00 PM on November 10, 2009


Good luck with your recovery!
posted by gomichild at 9:04 PM on November 10, 2009


Glad you and nicwolff are both doing well post-surgery!
posted by runningwithscissors at 9:13 PM on November 10, 2009


nicwolff: "Hey, I had surgery today too! (On my arm, to (hopefully) relieve pressure on the median nerve after my tendon reattachment in May. Hope we both recover nicely"

Nice pictures in your link. Were you awake when the before and after was taken?
posted by JohnnyGunn at 9:35 PM on November 10, 2009


nickyskye, too; battled cancer a few years back.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:51 PM on November 10, 2009


You'll never forget Macho Grande.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 2:51 AM on November 11, 2009


I lived in Iowa for 6 years, they took a knife to me once...well, enough said but basically they (and all Iowans) fixed me for free and helped me to be useful again. Hi Doctors Pick and Mortens and happy to see you post-op cjorgensen.
posted by vapidave at 3:50 AM on November 11, 2009


You have the perfect amount of time to sit with a ragged copy of A Christmas Carol, learn the lines of Marley's ghost, and put on one hell of a show. Get plently of sleep, get spoiled, and get your heal on.
posted by psylosyren at 6:45 AM on November 11, 2009


Metafilter: thoroughly goatsed the doctors that killed you
posted by Saucy Intruder at 6:49 AM on November 11, 2009


Big ups!
posted by cavalier at 7:18 AM on November 11, 2009


Still alive!
posted by Halloween Jack at 7:48 AM on November 11, 2009


Glad you're okay. Matt should make MeFi hospital gowns.
posted by theora55 at 8:02 AM on November 11, 2009


This has been very exciting. Congratulations on your successful surgery, and I hope you enjoy the time you get to mend. Failing that, I hope you get better quickly and can get back to what you enjoy.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:04 AM on November 11, 2009


Is it weird to hope that you eventually make up lots of freaky stories about where the scars came from and eventually post them in your profile?

:) Glad you're okay!!!
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 8:08 AM on November 11, 2009


stet, I enjoy dark humor. I had to keep a lot of it to myself or risk updating the girlfriend.

backseatpilot, I didn't even get to see it. I meant to ask to, but forgot. After the surgery I supposedly got to talk to the doctor twice, so I may have asked, but I don't even remember having talked to him.

mikeh writes "...and whether you get any good pain pills!" What they've given me are not adequate. Vicodine gives me cramps, so they prescribed Tylenol 3 with Codeine, which doesn't seem to take the pain down far enough or work for long enough. It only seems to last about 2.5 hours. Considering I'm not supposed to take it more often than every 4 hours, and it takes 30 minutes to take affect, I am not having a good morning. We tried calling in a asking for something else, but they said to put ice on it. If you saw the photo of me this really isn't possible. My ear and face are hurting a lot.

shetterly writes, "You've got my birth date, and I would gank your profile's "about" in an instant if I thought I could get away with it." Heh! You're welcome to it. Probably needs punched up a tiny bit. I'm sure I've had to do less of these than you over the years, but after a bit they get hard to write funny, interesting, informative, or clever. You can either take the Glen Cook route and have the same bio for 30 years, or the Harlan Ellison route where none are ever the same and are usually worth reading first.

empath writes, "are you allowed to twitter in the OR?"

I set those up using www.socialoomph.com. I was hoping they would be a distraction for my girlfriend. I tried saying this in a couple updates to not confuse people, but no one can be expected to read them all. Heh. I knew people would send her nice messages if I was doing this, and she might be distracted by them.

Cat Pie Hurts, and the others mentioning the urination issues. I had the opposite. It make sense in retrospect, but one of my first thought when waking up was that I had to go really badly. I am pretty sure I wouldn't have been dry if the surgery had gone on another hour. My first request was to use a bathroom. I was told, "We don't have one back here, but you can have a urinal." My brain did not parse that since a urinal is a bathroom in my mind, but instead they brought me a pitcher looking thing. That wasn't going to happen. There were other patients in the recovery room only separated by a curtain. I can go in a movie theater next to a peeker and still be able to go. Knowing there was an old lady on the other side of a curtian...just wasn't going to happen.

I also didn't expect as much pain as there was from being intubated.

scody, I thought I was going to have to have it on the left side as well, since I had a similar discomfort there (no lump though). This came from my teeth not aligning correctly. The doc said this was TMJ, and it seems to fit the symptoms I am having there. I was thinking of the whole Frankenstien thing as well. I also thought just running around with the drain port in my head would work.

All in all I think it has gone well, I got pretty upset in the recovery room, but this was mostly due to being emotional post surgery. I asked the nurse if I had arrested on the table or anything. She asked, "Arrested?" I said, "Yeah, did I have a cardiac arrest or anything serious happen?" She says, "Are you serious?" I pretty much broke down a bit at this point. I don't know what I said then, but she told me everything had gone fine and there had been no major complications. I was pretty overwhelmed by this.

I guess in the nurse's experience my question probably sounded dumb, since if I'd had something like that I probably would have woken up in the ICU, but at the time it was important I get the answer and she was making it difficult. I know there wasn't malice there, but I'm still a bit irritated when I think back on it. It's hard to explain, but I couldn't even talk about that exchange for hours after.

I also asked for a mirror, but was told they didn't have any in the recovery room. Then when I got back to my room I was again denied. My girlfriend didn't have one on her. No nurses had one. And for some reason no one was letting me go to the bathroom (where I knew there was one). I am pretty sure they just didn't want me walking, but I started to feel like people were keeping a mirror away from me. My dad took a glass covered painting of the wall and I got to see I wasn't all deformed and bruised. Only much later, after I'd actually gotten to a real mirror did it dawn on me I could have used the iPhone to have my picture taken.

It was so bizarre how much getting access to a mirror meant to me. I know it was mostly attributable to my emotional state and to the earlier interaction with the nurse.

I fired up my twitter account and had hundreds of get well messages, and I started to read this thread while in the second recovery room (the one where family is allowed). Both meant a lot to me.

Thanks.
posted by cjorgensen at 8:37 AM on November 11, 2009 [4 favorites]


My first request was to use a bathroom. I was told, "We don't have one back here, but you can have a urinal." My brain did not parse that since a urinal is a bathroom in my mind, but instead they brought me a pitcher looking thing. That wasn't going to happen.

I had something similar happen to me when I was in the ICU after botched jaw surgery (long story). They had already taken the catheter out (which was not a very fun experience), and I was still too weak to stand up, so they gave me a weird milk-jug-like plastic container to pee in. The nurse and my family members that were visiting me left the room, and I with some difficulty attempted to pee into the little plastic jug.

It was around that point that I looked up and noticed that there was a big camera pointed straight at me, and I remembered that earlier in the day when they had wheeled me out to take x-rays I saw that the nurses station right outside my room had a bunch of monitors showing all of the ICU rooms, and that those monitors were clearly visible to anyone who happened to be standing in the hallway.

So that's the story of how I ended up peeing into a plastic bottle live on closed-circuit television.
posted by burnmp3s at 9:40 AM on November 11, 2009 [3 favorites]


And this is the best metafilter shirt photo ever!

That picture made me think of this image.

Glad you're okay!
posted by ericb at 9:50 AM on November 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


Really glad to hear you are okay! I hope the recovery goes well!
posted by spec80 at 9:56 AM on November 11, 2009


I think you're handling this so well you should give yourself a pat on the back, provided it doesn't dislodge the bandages swathed around your head. Really, surgery is scary stuff, and *of course* you were emotional waking up. The nurse should have been more understanding.

About the mirror thing--I can so see that happening. I'd start thinking I was in some Twilight Zone episode, too, if suddenly nobody could find a mirror. I'd be spinning conspiracy theories in my head.

And thank goodness you didn't know the horror of the Foley catheter. If I could get my hands on the inventor of that torture device--well, I think using his own invention would be punishment enough.

After I had one surgery, I remember literally counting down in my head the final minutes until I was allowed another dose of painkiller. I'm not an addictive personality and had no trouble quitting the meds once the pain was more manageable, but the first few hours (and for some weird reason, the third day) after surgery are the worst! I remember my spouse being very assiduous about making sure I took the pain pills precisely on time and not a moment earlier.

Later on, everyone we talked to said, "If you're in pain, take them when you need them! Screw waiting another hour!"

So, that's my two cents. Of course, IANAD.

Get well soon, 'kay?
posted by misha at 10:53 AM on November 11, 2009


Of course you were in a touchy emotional state after surgery -- people were probing around inside your body, in places where even you don't go (if that makes sense) -- it's very invasive and can leave you feeling extremely vulnerable and weepy. At least, that's the way I rationalized my post-surgery crying jags. (That, and the drugs, and the stress...)
posted by chowflap at 1:25 PM on November 11, 2009


Oh, and feel better soon! Fuck the "every four hours" thing, if you really can't stand it. In a couple of days you won't need it as much, so you won't be "abusing" it (or your liver) for long. (Note: I am not a doctor, take any advice with a grain of salt.)
Good luck! Speedy recovery!
posted by chowflap at 1:28 PM on November 11, 2009


ericb, that photo makes me laugh every time I see it. Someone on here, rouskin, roshkin, rushken (something like that) uses it for an avatar and whenever he posts in a thread i click into his profile just to see it. Now I have a big one!

I called the doctor's office. They suggested icing the affected area. I wanted to fax them the photo and ask how I can manage to do that. The pain meds aren't cutting deep enough or lasting long enough. I'm getting about 1.5 acceptable hours out of 4.

This all said, I was expecting to be laid up for days bedridden, but I am mobile, antsy, and being well taken care of.
posted by cjorgensen at 2:10 PM on November 11, 2009 [2 favorites]


Send some kids down to the local opium den to pick you up the real stuff. Don't let the government dictate how you get your healthcare!!
posted by GuyZero at 2:32 PM on November 11, 2009 [4 favorites]


being well taken care of.

Excellent. I am glad you are okay.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 3:17 PM on November 11, 2009


Don't go thinking this excuses you from your posting duties! I want to see fifteen posts on the blue by Monday!
posted by Pope Guilty at 3:50 PM on November 11, 2009


I just wanted to say, good luck; we're all counting on you.
posted by MrMoonPie at 6:19 PM on November 11, 2009 [2 favorites]


Congratulations on your successful surgery! I hope your pain disappears rapidly.

Best wishes for a speedy and complete recovery.
posted by angiep at 8:28 PM on November 11, 2009


yay successful surgery!

heal up good.
posted by rmd1023 at 9:33 PM on November 11, 2009


I had that surgery about 15 years ago, so between you and Adam Yauch, I feel like I'm in pretty good company.
posted by Optamystic at 5:05 AM on November 12, 2009


Three years ago this month for me was when George (my parotid tumor, named by my then six-year-old daughter....no, I don't know why) came out. I wish you a speedy recovery! Lots of milkshakes (the cold does WONDERS for the pain)! Better pain meds! No visible scar!
posted by cooker girl at 10:27 AM on November 12, 2009


Well, one famous George springs to mind as a possible namesake for a cancerous tumor.
posted by Kattullus at 10:35 AM on November 12, 2009 [2 favorites]


cjorgensen: "This all said, I was expecting to be laid up for days bedridden, but I am mobile, antsy, and being well taken care of."

Glad to hear it darlin! Don't be afraid to ask for better pain meds if yours aren't doing the job. Big virtual hugs!
posted by dejah420 at 6:28 AM on November 13, 2009


Speedy recovery to you!
posted by bitteroldman at 10:00 AM on November 13, 2009


> Just got back from the doctor's and had my JP drain removed. I now have a pressure bandage back on my head. The pain is under control now, so I am not as acutely aware of the time! I was clock watching for the last hour of each pain pill cycle. Now I can take them or leave them.

I'm so glad to hear you're already feeling better! Yay! That's very good news.
posted by heyho at 12:33 PM on November 13, 2009


ericb, that photo makes me laugh every time I see it. Someone on here, rouskin, roshkin, rushken (something like that) uses it for an avatar...

rokusan!

And thanks for all the well wishes everyone. I asked for my iPhone in the recovery room and checked in here and my twitter feed. It was a nice distraction and made me feel good.

And some of the memail advice was helpful as well. Thanks for that as well.
posted by cjorgensen at 1:17 PM on November 13, 2009


Am thrilled to hear everthing went so smoothly & you're recovering well. Love the pics!
posted by goshling at 5:23 PM on November 14, 2009


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