On the... *drum roll*
...23rd August! There, suspense over, now you can stop reading :p
The surgery is going to be a proctectomy (removal of the rectum) and I'll be given a permanent ileostomy. Had my colon yeeted out as far back as 2013 and had a stoma for 2 years. Then I got it reversed in 2015. The reversal turned out to be a massive mistake and so here I am, seeking a third and - I hope to god - final surgery. I've been waiting a year
for this. I wasn't on a waiting list for a whole year but I failed a pre-op health assessment and that delayed things massively: I had to wait forever for an echocardiogram and clearance by a cardiologist. The actual waiting list for surgery was shorter but still took nearly 4 months.
In fact I'm in a bit of a dilemma now. I have to have two Covid tests beforehand - one 3 days before the operation, the other on the morning of the op itself. Needless to say, I was absolutely terrified when two weeks ago my mum came down with a cold and I followed suit a few days later. Both our tests have been negative for Covid, thank god. But I'm still not fully over my cold - I still have a slight sore throat and occasional coughing fit. I've been dithering over whether to tell the surgeon's office or not. So far I haven't. If this operation is cancelled, god knows when I'll next be able to get it done. However, the cough is nothing
like as bad as when I had Covid for real last Christmas. In fact I haven't coughed all day today. I've still got a week left to recover, so I'm basically hiding my head in the sand and hoping it will be okay.
Anyway. I'm so sorry for not writing sooner. It's been a long, weird summer. A few of you may remember I was talking a lot about
my dad and his dementia. Well, he died suddenly two months ago. Completely unexpected collapse, I've never seen anyone - outside of a heart attack - go so quickly. We had decided to go to the local pub for dinner; right up until the point we left the house my dad seemed fine. He was listening to our conversation, he showed interest, he even laughed at something I said. There was no indication that he was seriously ill. Also, a GP had checked him over a few weeks beforehand: his blood tests showed nothing worse than mild anaemia. We walked to the pub - a 10-minute walk that my dad had done many times before - and on the way he started complaining about
the walk. My dad complaining about
exercise was not some new and unheard of thing, but I do remember being a bit surprised by just how bad it was. But it was a hot day and I assumed he would feel better after some food and drink.
He did not feel better. In fact he barely touched his meal. He started rambling non-stop, nothing really making any sense. He kept on talking about
wanting to bring something up - he clearly felt sick and we were terrified he was gonna be sick over the table. I tried to help him up, but it was like lifting a dead weight and he fell back in his chair. My mum got tearful and upset and said she would never go out for a meal with my dad again - she was stressing me out as much, if not more so, than my dad. Eventually I agreed to walk home and bring the car to the pub as there was clearly no way on earth my dad could walk home. In all honesty, I felt furious with him. I knew he couldn't help it but it just felt like yet another thing was being taken away from us - I had looked forward to our meals out and it seemed like we weren't even going to be do that anymore. My mum was already close to the point of being unable to leave my dad home alone at all, even for an hour or two.
Anyway I grabbed the car and when I came back my dad was even worse. The people in the pub were so kind. They called an ambulance for us. A woman sat with my dad and tried to comfort him. The ambulance came and I could tell the ambulance woman thought it was bad, but she spent ages with my dad in the ambulance doing what she could for him before driving to the hospital. Me and my mum followed in the car. It took ages to see our dad and then when we did, he was wearing an oxygen mask and it was hard to hear him. But he was still conscious at that point and trying to speak. My mum thought that dad couldn't recognise her but I definitely heard him say her name. And that was the last time we saw him conscious. The next day we went to hospital - very stupidly we went to the wrong hospital because nobody thought to tell us ward 2a was in another hospital! Anyway due to that, and various other reasons, we didn't make it to the other hospital until about
10pm. My brother turned up. My dad was unconscious and dying, but he seemed at peace. We said our goodbyes - if he could hear anything, or make sense of anything, I'll never know. But he died about
45 minutes after we left. Almost as soon as we had got into the house the phone rang. At a quarter to one in the morning it couldn't possibly be anything else, and it wasn't.
The cause of my dad's death was mysterious and for a while there was doubt about
whether there was going to be an inquest or not. In the end there wasn't. His cause of death was put down to ischaemic heart disease, although he didn't actually die of a heart attack - his blood pressure and heart rate just crashed through the floor and never recovered, even with drugs. Because of that, the funeral was delayed but we had it about
a month ago. It was touching. He was 87 years old. And, to be honest, I am glad he did not make it to the final stages of dementia: I would not wish that on my worst enemy.
I'd almost forgotten, but he also died a week before my parents' 60th wedding anniversary. I know he wouldn't have remembered how long he was married for, but it was still such a shame he couldn't make it just one more week.
I spent a lot of time with my brother and mum. He stayed at my mum's house for a few weeks, but he's gone back home now. It's just my mum living in the house alone, although some nights I stay with her. She's not on her own - she's got plenty of family who keep in touch and sometimes visit.
Living costs are spiralling out of control in the UK, but for this winter at least we'll cope. My dad left my mum with a complete mess to sort out, but he did do one very useful thing in what must have been a rare moment of lucidity: he put their energy tariff on a fixed rate until August 2023. Guys, I cannot tell you how envious I am of that right now: I'm currently paying more for my 1-bedroom flat than my mum is for a 4-bedroom house! (I've decided to pay off what I owe - fortunately not a vast sum - then cancel my direct debit and tell my energy supplier I will only pay them for exactly what I use. Then try to go a whole winter without central heating and pray and hope that the prices drop in 2023/4. It's that or pay up to £5k a year for energy, which is insane.)
So yeah, that's almost it. On Thursday I'm seeing the stoma nurse to get measured up for a stoma. As the old stoma scar is still there, that'll be easy lol. Then hopefully next week I'll be going in for surgery.
I hope everyone here is doing well. I apologise for another massive wall of text. I either seem utterly unable to write anything at all or write War and Peace-length posts.
Post Edited (NiceCupOfTea) : 8/16/2022 7:53:05 PM (GMT-7)