I had a follow-up appointment with my surgeon yesterday. I was standing at the receptionist desk, filling out paperwork when he came out between clients. He put his arm around me and said, “You look much better than the last time you were in my office, hunched over my toilet. You actually look amazing!” He gave me a squeeze and told me he’d be with me in a few minutes.
I sat down in the waiting room and proceeded to doze off. I’d gone through a long meeting that morning at Shane’s school, making more behavioral plans for him with his team, so by afternoon, I was just wiped out. I think I dozed for about 20 minutes when I heard the doctor say, “Come on, Sleepy.” It was my turn to see him.
He is a very nice man! He explained that he’s been doing surgeries since 1985 and this is the first time he’s seen what I had – that extra duct where it shouldn’t have been. He felt my belly and asked how I was doing. I asked when I could return to work and he said whenever I felt up to it as medically, I’m fine to go back.
He told me there was no more reason for him to need to see me (which made him sad because I was one of his favorite patients – the old flatterer!), but that I needed to make an appointment with the GI who put the stent in to have it removed. I told him that I was really afraid of having it taken out and he admitted that he was too but that it had to be done. For some reason, knowing he’s nervous about me having this procedure done was comforting to me. He isn’t dismissing that I’m an anomaly and that there is the very real possibility that this routine procedure will go wrong just like my routine gallbladder surgery went wrong. He wasn’t dismissive and that helped immensely. I guess I’ll have to keep him posted after I have the stent removed.
As I was leaving, I got the medical release from the receptionist so I can return to work. I’ll be going back next week. I’m a bit nervous. I’m worried about my energy level. I have an office job but it takes a lot out of me. It is strenuous mental work plus the running back and forth to the printer and all the offices I have to visit during the day. I will be moving slower than normal and worry that I won’t be able to keep up with what I need to do. I also worry that it will take forever to catch up on the amount of work that will have piled up in the three weeks I’ve been off. How long will it take me to catch up?
I need to get in the head space now that it takes as long as it takes. I need to tell myself that I didn’t just miss one or two days, I missed three weeks. It is ok to take my time getting caught up. My customers will understand. I know this. I have great customers. Even the couple that are more demanding than anyone else will be understanding. I just have to pace myself and I will get caught up eventually.
All in all, it was a good follow-up appointment. I’m healing and getting stronger each day. I’ll be back to myself soon, although it isn’t as soon as I’d like. In a few weeks, this will all have been a bad memory and I’ll be me again. I’m praying that the stent removal is just a small blip on my radar and that nothing weird happens. But, this time, I’m ready just in case it does. I won’t be surprised. My body is just odd and for the most part, I’ve accepted that. I’m just going to hope it cooperates this next time and I’m just down for a weekend.
Hope springs eternal.