Wednesday, September 24, 2014

GRS in Montreal: Arrival and Surgery Prep


About 5:30 yesterday evening Chantal, who runs the bed and breakfast where we've been staying, called me down to dinner for what would be my last meal before surgery.  I had just gotten out of the shower after having done the first of two required enemas at 4 pm.  I was also instructed to shave the entire surgery area (groin), which wasn't a problem for me because I keep myself shaved all over all the time.  We were told to be ready at 6:45 for the cab ride that would take us to the hospital.
   
My last meal before surgery, and it was a good one.  I also had a piece of apple pie for dessert and a bowl of raisin bran.  I'm told the bran cereal is supposed to help us out after surgery by allowing us to go to the bathroom easier.
At 6:45, my roommate Samantha, Mama, Mitchell and I got in the cab for the (approximately 10 minute) ride.  My first impressions of the hospital (CENTRE'  Metropolitain De Chirurgie) were that it is clean, quiet and small.  It's even located on a relatively quiet street in a mostly residential area of the city.  We re on the northern side of Montreal, across the river from suburban Laval.
  

Arriving at the hospital
Samantha and I are sharing a room here and she will be having surgery later this morning (GRS, same as me).  She is a young lady from Edmonton and we haven't met the third girl who is having her surgery right now.  My other new friend from Edmonton, Marci, is an a room across the haul with a girl from Omaha and they both had their surgeries yesterday. 

Marci is the one who dubbed Mama 'The Ambassador of Awesome" and we all checked in on her last night when Mama was here.  She sent for me later and I went over for a visit before I had to fill out my paperwork, get vitals and weight tested and get checked to make sure that I'd shaved properly.  I passed all the tests although I must say my blood pressure was running high.  That is to be expected I guess, as I do have blood pressure that runs a little high as well as white coat syndrome.  The nurse mentioned that maybe they would give me something for it but I haven't heard more about it.

The higher blood pressure reading is the only sign so far that I might be nervous or feeling stress about the upcoming procedure.  Marci was in quite a bit of pain last night, as is to be expected, and when I paid a short visit to her this morning she was still really hurting.  I guess that pain will also be my fate when I wake up later this afternoon.

I had a visitor last night, Evonee, who I'd met online through my Vanity Club sister Stephanie.  I'd talked to her some online in the last few months and we Skyped once before coming up.  Evonne lives in Montreal, had her surgery with Dr. Brassard about 3 years ago and has since served as a big sister, helping many of the girls get through this difficult process.  I'm lucky to have her on my side and look forward to seeing more of her over the coming week.  I also hope she just comes for visits and doesn't have to help me through any problems, like she does for many others.

My roommate and surgery mate Samantha, me and Evonne, during visiting hours last night.
After visiting hours were over everyone left.  Mitchell and Mama are coming back today before I go into the operating room, but we spent some time saying goodbye and goodnight.  Then I had to do another enema and take the first of two antiseptic showers. 

After 10 we were allowed to take a sleeping pill.  In typical fashion, as I tend to put off sleep, I waited until midnight to take my pill.  Samantha had taken hers closer to 10 and I talked to her over an hour before she began to feel sleepy.  She is very cool and sort of a trip so i really enjoy talking to her.  When I finally took my pill I started working on this blog and dozed off, waking up sometime later to a screen full of zzzzzzzzzzzzz's, as I might have pressed against the keyboard as I napped.  To me the sleeping pill was very strong and worked quickly, although I am not groggy this morning after about 5 hours sleep.

The enemas are really a piece of cake although some complain about them.  Some also complain about the shaving or don't do it well enough and have to be do it over.  That's pretty much all I've had to do so far except rest and sit by in idle anticipation.  I did have to put my hospital gown on after this morning's second and final pre surgery shower using, and  antiseptic soap.

WELL, as I was typing that last sentence, at 9:15 AM, my roommate Sam has been called to go back for surgery.  When they are done with her it will be my turn!  NOW I am getting a little bit nervous, but I still feel everything will be fine and over very soon.  Please stay tuned....

     
My loving family and I back at the bed and breakfast..