November 4, 2015

Slice of Life | Another Surgery

Today was another surgery day.

The removal of the plaque was done at another hospital, Toronto Western,
but still with Dr. Krema.

Photo Source: UHN

Thanks to Maria, our spunky friend at the lodge, this time when we had to take a taxi we knew to ask for a pass at the lodge so that we didn't have to pay for it. Another blessing.

When we first arrived at the hospital, we weren't sure where to go so we used the phone at the information desk. We were sent to the second floor. While the front desk nurse was friendly, the place was small and hopping with nurses getting patients ready for surgery. To an outsider, it seemed a little chaotic. A man was going to go home if he wasn't first. Forms for one patient had been sent to the wrong floor so someone was running to go get them. For the first time since coming here, I felt unsettled about surgery. When the front desk nurse was finally able to help us, he asked who Jim's surgeon was and then he kindly informed us that we would need to go to fourth floor. To be honest, I was relieved.

After Jim was registered, we went into a large room with green recliners where patients waited to begin prep (eye drops and weighing) for surgery. The nurse sounded just like Aunt Jan and she had a great sense of humor. Another couple whose wife had the same surgeon were sitting beside us. We enjoyed hearing about his travels as a truck driver and how they are (young) grandparents now.

We then went to the pre-op where Jim met up with Dr. Krema again. Jim's follow up will be done in three months in Halifax, but he would like to see him in six months to a year. He then met with another anaesthesiologist and resident. They were warm and friendly and made a different plan with Jim that would include no narcotics this time. Jim continues to be in good hands.

Jim walked in to surgery area with them this time and I made my way to the waiting room.

While Jim was in surgery, I met a beautiful lady who was there with her husband. Months ago he was working with a nail gun and the nail ricocheted and hit him in the eye. They were able to save his eye in emergency surgery and today's surgery was to help with the pooling. She shared how their families are from Europe and showed me photos of her five children and two grandchildren.  I am so thankful I get to experience these moments. We also talked about our new Prime Minister as we watched Ottawa prepare for him to be sworn in on TV. Just before the big moment, the buzzer rang to let me know Jim was out of surgery, we squeezed each other's hands and I was on my way.

Without narcotics, Jim felt much better then last time which was a good thing in day surgery as they send you home as soon as you talk, eat a cracker and walk to the washroom. He had a kind and helpful nurse in those few moments in pre-op! Wink!

We were able to take a shuttle from Toronto Western to another one close to Princess Margaret. It was interesting to drive through Chinatown on the way. We made our way to Princess Margaret and then we grabbed our familiar white shuttle back to the lodge, our Toronto home. Jim was a little loopy at first, but he rested when we got back and is doing well. It's hard to believe the body can go through surgery and then keep going so soon afterwards.

Today's surgery was to remove the plaque and reattach the muscle. Eye care continues the same and Jim is to wear his patch for 24 hours and then when he is outside of home, but at home he is to have the patch off as much as possible to regain the strength in the muscle. Jim's eye looks different on the outside this time. He looks like he was hit!

During the evening, we were able to spend more time with the people here. I'm going to miss them.

Thank You, God, for bringing Jim through another surgery.

Thank You so much for this lodge. I love the people here.

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