Hospital Funzies... said no person ever

It's really something when a potentially enormous life event gets swallowed up in the chronic chaos of the daily. Mainly because life is so full of the life-or-death stuff it becomes the norm. I'm currently sat in Poole hospital, hanging out in the pre-op ward. Not for shits and giggles you understand- I hate hospitals with a passion and would rather walk across hot coals than choose to be here. I even pass all B-hospital-duties over to S, as far as possible. That's not to say I haven't spent my fair share of time here. I have, which is probably why I hate the place so much. While I completely understand the life-saving benefits of a free NHS, and wholly appreciate the settings which provide that care, for me there's too much association with past stuff. Too much time spent visiting parents as a kid, and too much time here myself in various capacities. So yeah, not my forte. 

I'm here because they need to get a growth out and there's a small chance it might be cancerous. Not enough of a chance to be legitimately worried about, but a risk none the less. Due to the micro-chance of malignancy it's all happened fairly quickly; I only had the consultant appointment 2 weeks ago. I am somewhat annoyed at the absolutely appalling timing, what with it being final semester of my final year and all. For the sake of uni work I've had to plan for worst-case scenario, which meant getting my head down and cracking on to get a dissertation draft submitted before my op. The dissertation is the one piece of work in my whole uni career to date that can get feedback prior to marking. And only ONCE. No pressure. Basically, hand in your dissertation as close to complete as possible so as to make the most of your once. Anyway. I managed. Quality wise, I'm not so sure, but at least I got it in right?

I also have the irritation of being completely out of action for a few days, regardless of the cancer/no-cancer outcome. Without a decent practical support network and a B, this shit is not a luxury we can afford. I was actually meant to have an elective op after coming off my bike and obliterating my ACL, but the recovery was four weeks. As much as that would be great, four weeks?! No chance. We're down to a skeleton carer team and no overnight respite right now. This ebbs and flows depending on a few things, but generally people working in the care sector a-don't get paid enough and b-can't keep up the intensity that is working with kids like B over a long period. We're acutely aware of this as employers, and try our utmost to make sure we don't give people too many hours, and that those hours are not too condensed. It's like juggling knives while walking a tightrope- utter piece of cake. 

I'm needle phobic. Like properly needle phobic. It sucks balls. I pride myself on being able to handle most things without a big fuss or bitchy whining- my pain threshold is pretty high, and my stubbornness isn't easily beaten down. But that teeny tiny bit of scratchy metal has me over a barrel. There is a context to this though, every time I had to go in as a kid- every time- a blood test would take at least three attempts. Bad veins apparently- slip all over the place the little fuckers. Every time I needed bloods I told them to use a butterfly (the tiny needles for people with shit veins), and every time I seemed to land up with the arrogant arse of a nurse who assured me their skill did not necessitate a butterfly. Multiple attempts coupled with a weird blood clotting issue meant beautiful rainbow shade bruises and consolidation of my initial needle phobia. Catch 22. 

Today, same thing. I needed a cannula put in to administer various exciting pre-op drugs to guard against excessive bleeding on the operating table due to the haemophilia stuff. I know what you're thinking- and I concur. I'm just plain greedy when it comes to anomalous and rare life experiences. Sorry about that. I should really consider others when snaffling up all the exciting stuff.

Anyway, I gave the guy the shit veins spiel, and he predictably cracked on with gay abandon. Attempt one: busted vein right hand. Attempt two: busted vein left hand. At which point the adrenaline had kicked in and I politely informed him if he didn't nail it on attempt number three it would end up with the unfortunate punching of his nice face, or me vomming all over the floor. I don't usually mince my words, but throw some adrenaline in there and yeah. I could be considered rude. Poor guy obviously performs better under pressure- attempt three was a winner. I whispered a loud 'thank fuck' as he told me not to move, speak or breathe while he finished getting that bad boy in. Yes, yes, I know... so many innuendos. Moving swiftly on....He told me he'd just said the exact same thing in his head, but was maintaining professionalism by keeping it there. 

So here I am, hooked up to a drug infusion tube, and feeling a bit like I imagine B to feel every mealtime when we hook him up to his feed pump. What a bloody pain in the arse. 45 minutes a time, 3 times a day. It's restrictive and sucky, and for a kid with limited understanding probably damn irritating. 

But hey, bright side living yes? Always shiny bits to suck the marrow out of? I went to the loo in the most fetching of outfits- the hospital gown. That coupled with the stripy socks and all stars and I am right up there for designer of the year. I sashayed my way down the corridor catwalk style, only to realise the world and his dog were privvy to an excellent view of my Granny-knickered arse since the tabs had come undone on the gown. Not one for introversion, this wouldn't usually have bothered me, but I'm not sure the very nice slightly handsome surgeon following in my wake cared for such a view. And then. Then I peed on aforementioned undone tab. And it all went wrong. 

See you on the other side. 


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