Yesterday was my very last session of chemo. As is usual for this Granny and her sidekick, it didn’t pass without incident and I thought I’d do a blog post about it all. We arose early, showered, quick breakfast and then walked down to the bus stop at the bottom of the road because it was drizzling and our nearest stop does not have a shelter. So far, so good. The bus we were waiting for is supposed to arrive at 09.03am and then arrives at the hospital stop at roughly (depending on traffic) 09.45am, so plenty of time for our 10.00am appointment with the chemo chair.
“Sandra. Sandra! It’s all over!” Someone said. I opened my eyes. Several blue clad persons, including my lovely young student nurse were hovering in around my bed. There eyes were fixed on something behind me to the left. I was offered a drink of water from a straw clad beaker. My lips and mouth were dry. I drank it thankfully.
“We’re a little concerned about your blood pressure Sandra, its very low. We’ll have to raise it before we can take you back to the ward.” Hmm. My blood pressure is always low I told them. It never reaches 120/80. As I was to eventually find our later, the epidural also lowers your blood pressure. At one point as I lay there, it dropped to 65/ I was encouraged to drink more water. Eventually my blood pressure was high enough for my return to the ward. As my bed complete with me in it entered the ward door, I remembered to wave to my fellow companions. From that point it was an endless round of being constantly monitored, especially my blood pressure which again took a dip.
M still hadn’t gone down to theatre. I kept drifting into and out of consciousness. On my left hand were two cannulas with two more on my right. One of them on my right hand was really painful. I had a catheter attached to my bladder. From the waist down I was completely numb. I could feel nothing at all. B’s magic concoction of epidural pain killers certainly worked! Eventually, M left for her operation. She was hoping that Mr N could do a keyhole which would mean she would be home in a few days. I kept drifting off to sleep. I had told everyone not to visit today as I would be ‘three sheets to the wind’ I asked the others what time I had returned. Roughly about dinner time. I had been down a while then!
Various persons came to examine me, ward staff kept a constant vigil of checks blood pressure, temperature, breathing, oxygen levels, checks on my bladder function, etc and this continued into the night. Eventually M returned, some four hours or so later. Apparently following her op, her breathing had not been too good. She has Asthma, and in a similar law to my blood pressure, they would not return her to the ward until her breathing was stable. She and were kept a very close eye on all through the night, and were constantly monitored.
“In the morning, we will remove your catheter so that you can get out of bed and sit in the chair. You can also have a bath or shower as well. We want you to begin to move around as it helps to ease the wind pain.”
Blimey! I couldn’t wait. I wasn’t very comfortable in bed, there is only so much gazing up at the air conditioning outlet above your head that a body can take, and as nice as the recent bed bath by two of the nurses had been, the thoughts of being able to soak in a gorgeous mass of bubbles in that huge bath was really something to look forward to. Roll on tomorrow!