Friday, March 18, 2016

St. Partick's Day

I slept lousy again overnight and so woke up early on Thursday. That's normally okay, but since I couldn't eat or drink anything after midnight, this was torture.

The only pill I could take this morning was the generic Protonix with just a "sip" of water. Then I took the three Tylenol and three Advil that were part of the pain protocol. I skipped the epilepsy drug (the side effects scared me).

So, to distract myself, I cut up the veggies for my slow cooker corned beef and cabbage. I was using a recipe my daughter Amy had posted on Facebook. I had bought the smallest corned beef I could find (2.6 pounds). Since her recipe called for a 4-6 pound corned beef, I cut everything in half.

So, I put in one pound of quartered red potatoes, three medium carrots, thick-sliced on the bias, half of a large onion, chopped, and six large whole cloves of garlic. Then I added the corned beef. the pickling spices (included with the corned beef) and one tablespoon of brown sugar.

I topped that with one bottle of Guinness Stout and enough hot water to cover the meat. I set the house keys next to the slow cooker so I wouldn't forget to turn it on before I left.

Then I shaved, showered and got dressed. I picked out a likely book and sat in the living room, reading and waiting for my ride.

Vicky showed up just after 7:30 a.m. I turned the slow cooker on low, grabbed my book, cane and coat and headed out.

I explained to the hospital staff that I was early (I was supposed to get there by 9:30 a.m.), but my ride had to get to work.

So, I sat and read until they called me. I got ready by stripping down to just my socks and put everything I had on into a bag. Then they checked all my vitals. My blood sugar level was 220, which we all agreed wasn't too amazing, since I hadn't taken my morning meds. They decided to give me a shot of insulin and asked if I wanted it in my arm, buttocks or stomach. I picked stomach, having had to administer it here for weeks after my spinal fusion.

I got an I.V. and the nurse nailed it on the first try! Both of us were impressed (I have crappy veins).

I met with the anesthesiologist, who explained I wouldn't be totally anesthetized, which explained why I didn't need someone in the waiting room (Sorry, Carl). I would be in some kind of twilight sleep and my arm would be numbed.

The surgeon also talked to me and he used a marker to show the location of the mass and made some sort of squiggly mark on my arm.

Sidebar: If it doesn't wash off, I'm going to tell everybody it's a Chinese symbol for "Fierce Warrior!"

Then they wheeled me into the operating room. I got the sleep shot in my I.V. and then they numbed my right arm. They could have waited a bit for the I.V. to work, because that hurt like hell.

I don't really remember the operation at all, until they started to sew my muscle back together. Damn, that really hurt!!!

Note: They are dis-solvable  stitches. The actual incision was closed with surgeon's glue (Super Glue) to prevent infection.

They were able to get the whole mass out, thank God!

Sidebar: This was excellent news, as the surgeon kept saying if it was too attached to the muscle, he would just do a biopsy, close me back up and order more tests. I really didn't want to do this twice!!!

I was in recovery around 11:30 a.m. and they called Vicky, telling her she could pick me up around noon. They asked her to call when she got there. I eventually was told to get dressed. Then I sat in a wheel chair for a bit, until Vicky's call.

But, of course, I was two stories up and away so, by the time they got me down to the lobby, Vicky was inside and looking for me.

On the way home, I explained to her it was like when you go to the doctor's. You have a specific appointment time but then you wait in the waiting room, then they put you in an exam room and the doctor sees you when they are ready. Same here. They don't want somebody standing around in the lobby until your ride gets there. Their time is important, not yours.

She offered to take me to lunch, or stop and get anything I needed. But I told her all I wanted to do was to go home. So, that's where she took me.

Once inside, I ate two slices of toast then I took my normal meds and more Tylenol and Advil. Then I laid down for a while. I noticed my incision was starting to bruise, so I took a photo for you around 2:30 p.m.

I watched TV and dozed until around 4:00 p.m.The I got up and added some wedges of Savoy cabbage to the slow cooker. I set the timer for an hour and went back to bed.

Vicky called as she was leaving work to see if I needed anything. I thanked her but said I was all set. Nice kid! 

When the timer went off, I took out the contents of the slow cooker, sliced the corned beef (well, tried to slice it - it literally fell apart) and made a plate up for my dinner.

It was delicious! Happy Saint Patrick's Day to me!!!

Savoy Cabbage

Corned Beef

St. Patrick's Day Dinner

B___ called and I filled him in on today's events.

I watched the hockey game and then I tried to fall asleep. All I could manage was short naps all night long (moving my arm wrong would wake me up).

As I was filling this out on Friday morning, I noticed my bruise had expanded, so I took another photo for you!


  1. Thank you, Vicky. :)

    Looks like you’ll be back to work in no time, John.

  2. Keep me up to date on your progress......If you need anything, just call me....I will send Jim

    Do they know why it grew into your muscle?
    When do you go back to work?

  3. @ Jyl: No, I'm good.
    @ GPF: ctfu! Yeah, please send Jim. As far as the muscle thing, it just got so big, I guess. Going back to work on Monday. I probably could have gone back today but my boss ordered me not to.

  4. They work fast at St. Marys! Glad it went well. Dinner looks great. Can't recall the last time I had corn beef and cabbage.

  5. Thanks. You should revisit corned beef and cabbage. It's delicious and easy-peasy.