My Gallbladder Surgery - Part One

I was not nervous on the day of surgery.  Every other day leading up to surgery day was a different story.  I tried to think of every reason why I should not have my gallbladder removed.  To be honest, my hindsight is telling me that I probably should have just let it go.  

I've had three "attacks" since January.  The last one was in April and I went to the ER because I thought I was having a heart attack.  The ER doctor told me that he couldn't really contribute what I was feeling to the gallstones they discovered, but that it could very likely be the culprit.  I made an appointment to speak with a gastroenterologist just to hear his opinion of the ultrasound results.  In the meantime, I consulted Dr. Google.  I briefly considered trying to flush the stones "naturally", but my brain immediately went into panic mode and I knew for certain that a stone would become lodged in my common bile duct and I'd die of pancreatitus. 

So they scheduled my surgery for May 12th at noon.

I arrived a little early because that's just what I do.  Then we waited.  And waited...

Finally they called me back to get prepped.  Around 1:30PM.

The nurse, Dana, got my IV started with only one stick, but it was rough.  

She said, "Wow, that vein was a tough one."  

I responded, "Probably because I haven't had anything to eat or drink in more than 15 hours."  

She got a bag of fluids started.  We began to wait again.  Because as per the usual for life, things were running behind.  A previous surgery had taken a bit longer than expected.  So the person before me was behind too.  

Nurse changed from Dana to Rocky.  When they came into my room to let me know they were changing shifts, the first nurse realized I'd almost gotten the entire bag of fluid already.  Whoops.  So she let the new nurse know I'd be needing a new bag.  Rocky changed my bag and lowered the drip level.  Thank you Nurse Rocky.  That was the last time I saw her.  Somewhere in here I began to freak out and considered running for my life.

Anesthesiologist came in around 2:30ish, his name was Chris.  He asked me all the routine questions. He explained to me what he would be doing.  

He said, "What I'm going to do is, when we get ready to go to the OR, I'll put something in your IV to relax you.  Then when we get to the OR, I'll give you an oxygen mask.  It's going to smell funny, like rubber, but that is normal.  When you are asleep, I'll put a breathing tube in so that we'll make sure your airway is clear and you are breathing normally."

"Okay?", he said.

"Okay.", I said.

That is not what happened.  At 3PM, the nurse and Chris came into the room to take me back.  I gave my husband a kiss and hug and told him bye.  At the same time, the anesthesiologist was pushing that "something to relax" me into my IV.  

I said, "Oh that's warm.  Is that th.... yes, it is."

That's all I remember.

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