Sunday, October 18, 2009

In which I enjoy my last thyroided day.

This post, on the other hand, is all about The Cancer.  Even though everyone who reads this blog either also reads my book blog OR is my mother, and knows all this already, I feel like I should tell you that I'm going in for surgery again tomorrow.  There won't be any rad in-hospital pics because I forgot my camera at my parents' house in a turkey-induced haze of frantic leaving.  So.

Between Thanksgiving and then bogarting all the leftovers and Joel talking me into going for a donut and then talking me into getting the 12-pack once we get there, I've taken a running head start on my post-op weight gain.  I feel like I'm storing up for my 2-day hospital hibernation.

So, they're keeping me for two days this time.  Partially because they're taking out my WHOLE thyroid, and partially because my nerves are finicky.  My voice, once gone, came back with a bang just under a week ago and I am the most Raych-sounding I have ever been.  I have been singing AC/DC and making SCREEEE noises when we take sharp turns in the car and generally relishing the thought that I won't be waking up with a tube in my throat.  If I come out of Surgery 2.0 with my voice intact, it will be like being buried in puppies.

I'm not overly worried.  I've lost my rabid enthusiasm of two weeks ago and I'm not totally stoked to go through recovery again, but I'm thrilled to be recovering for good this time.  All the healing I've done over the last month and some seems like so much wasted energy, but I guess it'll make things easier that I'm so damned healthy again.

I seriously feel great.  I forget for long stretches of time, and then I go to scratch my neck and I'm all, Oh yeah, I have cancer.  And then it's all I can think about.  I feel like this is what the early stages of pregnancy must be like, all Oh right, that Thing! I know that I'm lucky in this.

So!  I have sweats packed, and a few books that I don't need to be terribly lucid to read.  We're going out to Applebees for my last meal and I have a coupon somewhere for a free dessert.  The house is clean, the laundry is done, I have no assignments due for a week and a half.  Let the scalpeling begin!

Friday, October 16, 2009

The good ferry

Ok, this post has nothing to do with The Cancer and everything to do with me and Joel finally Getting Ours.

So, even though I know several people in real life who work for BC Ferries who are not idiots, I remain convinced that BC Ferries is entirely staffed by idiots.  I mean, there has to be a system that just isn't being used, right?  They aren't supposed to load us all on the ferry willy-nilly?

And very little of my beef is with the wait times.  We've only ever once in life (before last weekend) gotten to the ferry when it was sufficiently non-busy that there were no sailing waits.  We are always on the next ferry but one, or the next but two (once on the next but four) and that's fine.  We bring homework.

But when the car in front of you is the last one on the previous ferry, it is RUBBING SALT IN THE WOUND when you are not the first one on the next ferry (after the reservations, I mean.  And the bikes.  And the oversized vehicles).  This is not rocket science OR brain surgery.  Can you not leave a different-colored cone in front of the line where you left off, so that you remember and don't start loading two lines to our left so that we almost don't make it on this one either?

I also have beefs with the process of filling the ferry left-to-right (one car here, and then you go next to him here, and you can go here) instead of just filling a line and then filling the line next to it, but I feel like I'm not explaining this well and I will have a hard time articulating why this is simultaneously inefficient and unfair.

Moving on to the part where we win.  So, my mom offered to ferry us over for Thanksgiving weekend, and buy us a reservation so that we could stick around for the actual dinner part of Thanksgiving and still catch the 9 coming home.  All day Friday things were going pear-shaped at ye olde ferrie terminal because one of them was out of commision, and then apparently Saturday morning as well.  But by the time we got to the terminal at 1:45, there was nothing but crickets and we drove straight onto the 2.

Victoire!  But then also, on the way home with our reservation we got to board first (durrr) and though we should have been off in the last quarter (due to the left-to-right loading procedure), enmeshing us in serious ferry traffic, we were blocking the motorbikes and had to be loaded off first.  Zoot!

I feel triumphant.  I ALSO feel like we've used up all of our good transit karma for the year, and as such we will not be coming home again until Christmas.  I want to ride this come-uppance for a while.

Monday, October 05, 2009

I would shriek with delight, were I capable of shrieking.

Ok internet, remember how yesterday I asked you to pray for an early surgery date for me?  Well you can all start praying for me to become a millionairess, because apparently you are quite good at this.  Today my surgeon's secretary Dawn phones and is all, Let's do this thing (because that's how she rolls).  I'll be going back under the scalpel in exactly 2 weeks (that's the 19th of October, for those of you who are bad at math) which gives me 2 weeks to get myself organized, scholastically speaking, and 2 weeks to stock up on frozen pizzas and 2 weeks for my voice to make that final lunge into normal.

I am absurdly excited.  I have never been this thrilled about a medical procedure.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Selective mutism

Ok, right, so the reason I haven't yet blogged about this whole not-being-able-to-talk business is A.) because I have a lazy ass, and B.) because it has actually been the most difficult part of this whole shim-sham.  Interacting with other people is such a large part of who I perceive myself to be that being reduced to a whisper has not been compatible with me having an awesome time.

So.  I woke up from the surgery with my voice in shreds and that was crappy but we thought it was just a normal side-effect of all the KNIVES that had been so recently whirling around my throat.  But many days went by (10.  Exactly 10) without it getting any better at all, and I cannot convey to you the extent of the frustration.  I couldn't thank the bus driver and I couldn't order a coffee and I couldn't speak in class and I had to SHOUT to talk to the person next to me and it was exhausting.  Plus, there were many instances where I'd be talking to someone and they'd be nodding away and I'd KNOW they couldn't hear me, but were just being polite.

And then I went to a wedding and did a fair amount of shouting and drank a great deal of Fireball whisky and woke up the next morning substantially improved, in the old voice-department.  It was a Fireball miracle.

But then 10 MORE days went by with no significant improvement, so now I could be heard across the room but only if the room was small and quiet, and if the person across the room was expecting me to speak, PLUS we had a chit-chat with the doctor about what ye olde nerve-paralysis means.  Turns out that the same nerves that help you talk also help you breathe, and that if I go in for Surgery-the-Dos and t'other nerve goes down too, I will end up with a trachotomy, and that is just about at the bottom of my List Of Things To Do In Life, right above Lose Arm To Shark Attack.

Anyhoodle, now I am stressing out because not only is this seriously chapping my ass, but it is freaking me out about a surgery that I was not previously freaked out about.  But nerves do not heal quickly if they heal at all, so I'm marshalling everyone I know who prays about stuff and getting them to pray about this, because the rest I can handle but I cannot re-grow my own nerve.

So Wednesday I come home after a particularly vigorous episode of Top Model and I'm talking to Joel and all of a sudden my normal voice switches on like a light and I stop sounding like Gary Busey.  Thank God.  And I mean literally, and if we were still doing the whole animal-sacrifice thing I'd be rustling up unblemished cattle like they were going out of style.

And Thursday morning it's gone again but by Thursday evening it's back, and now it cuts in and out like a bad tv set and if I clear my throat really hard sometimes I can knock it back into shape.  I sound like I'm going through puberty and I never have any idea when I open my mouth what's going to come out, and this results in me being INAPPROPRIATELY LOUD sometimes but I don't even care because this is such a relief, this is such a load off my mind, and I've never been more grateful.

Now we all need to pray that someone else cancels their surgery so that I can sneak in there like a bandit.