Shock and Awe

I don’t really know what to say to you above this event.  I’m literally speechless that you guys are spending your time and energy into creating a fundraiser for me.  I’ve never expected to see something like this being done for me.  It’s hard to wrap my head around why you guys are doing this for me.  I’ll try to accept it in the future but for now, it’s just amazing.  I hope that I’ll be able to show you how grateful and thankful I am for this, not sure how I’ll do that, but I’ll make it a mission to do so. 

I know I didn’t get around to writing an update after Friday’s appt. filled day, in addition to the 2 appointments I knew I had going into the day, they added one additional one with the Anesthesiologist at the end of the day.

My first appointment was to meet the Doctor that will be doing the surgery, Dr. Bayles at Virginia Mason.  Spoke with his PA Nicole for a bit before seeing him.  She was awesome, going over what to expect from the surgery and what some of the risks are.  I was made aware of the risks previously but it’s good to get them from another person as well.  The main risks that I’m facing due to the size of the mass is paralysis and/or permanent damage to my vocal chords and damage to a nerve that allows me to lift my arm over my head.  I also face additional risks due to my weight.  Here’s the good news, Dr. Bayles is an expert when it comes to the airway and this type of surgery.  Many people have told me that inside Virginia Mason he’s the one they go to if they’re having any problems with a surgery.  Wow, so I’m going to be in good hands.  I found out that both Dr. Bayles and Dr. Short will be doing the surgery.

My next appointment was over at Group Health on Capitol Hill for an Ultrasound.  This was the most exhausting of the three appointments.  They said to plan on an hour and a half, and it took every bit of that.  I had to have my head as far to the right as possible for 45 minutes or so, and that just happens to be the side of my neck with the mass so that got uncomfortable really quick.  After examining the scans they decided that they needed to do a biopsy on a lymph node on the left side of my neck, so off we go to another room.  Where to my surprise was a funny, attractive nurse.  😉  They have me sign a form, tell me about what’s going to happen, have me lay down, numb the neck and do what they need to do.  Afterwards, I asked the nurse if she had a funny Band-Aid.  She laughed and said, “No, we just have those plan, boring ones.” “When I used to work at a family practice I would always give the older people funny band-aids, they didn’t like it at first but they always came around to appreciate it!”  We had a good laugh about it and to my surprise the ultrasound tech showed up with a SpongeBob sticker!  YES!  I was sent on my way, luckily I had just enough time to get something to eat since I hadn’t eaten all day.  I was near Broadway, so where does one go when they’re on Broadway?  To the place where the cool hang out, the swass like to play, and the rich flaunt clout.  Dick’s of course!  I downed a Dick’s Deluxe and a chocolate shake and headed off back to Virginia Mason to meet the Anesthesiologist.

I had to stop at the lab to get another blood draw before my appointment so I took care of that quick and easy.  Made my way to the Pre-Op office about 40 minutes early, fully expecting to have to wait 40 minutes until my time.  A couple was waiting as well, watching a movie on their phone, WITH NO HEADPHONES!  What in the world, I don’t know how long I can deal with this.  Luckily, they were called in shortly after I got there.  I got called in about 5 minutes later.  Woohoo, the nurse asked me the usual questions, any medications? No.  Any allergies?  No.  Any previous surgeries?  No.  Diabetes?  No, but my brother had passed away from it.  Any family history issues with anesthesia?  Not that I’m aware of.  She had a laugh, “you’re the easiest patient I’ve had today!”  I told her, “sorry I’m boring!  hahaha”.  Shortly after the Dr. came in and talked to me about the anesthesia and what it does, asks the same questions as before… he then mentions that he’s concerned with my airway and how much of it is being encroached on by the mass as it could cause issues when they have to insert a breathing tube down my throat before surgery.  They’re going to plan on doing an Fiber Optic Intubation while I’m in the operating room to be able to see if they’ll have any issues.  If it turns out that they won’t be able to insert a tube, they’ll need to give me a trachea so I can breathe during the surgery.  Great, another thing to be worried about.  He also told me he really needs to see the results from the Ultrasound that I had an hour previous, and the CT Scan I had when I had visited the Urgent Care last month.
I was out of there around 4pm, and couldn’t wait to get home.

I haven’t seen or heard the results from the Lymph Node biopsy, but they mentioned it should be sometime this week even with the holiday.


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