Concussions, and other fun things

There are few things in life which I value quite as much as the ability to think clearly. Food, family, and somewhere to live are all up there, of course, but aside from the basic necessities of living, what do you actually have if you can’t think?

I don’t mean thinking as in contemplating the deeper mysteries of life and all that (although I am the sort who enjoys that too, now and then), just… thinking. Being able to sit and know where you are, know how you’re feeling. Anticipate the finer things, such as how you’re going to get up, go into the kitchen, and put that kettle on for a cuppa. And then being able to get up, and not stop and think “Um, I’m in the kitchen. What was I about to do?”

A handy mug of tea

This, Jemma. It’s called tea, and it rules your life.

Last Friday, I had a pretty bad seizure and, although I don’t really remember doing so, hit my head kinda hard. I know this, because there’s a nice, handy bruise on the back of my head to remind me every time I lie down the wrong way. Now, this is a good opportunity for me to get sidetracked and point out that this wouldn’t have happened had the people around actually known what to do when someone has a seizure, and believe me, I will, another time. But today, the focus is the aftermath. The why, as it were.

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Well that was fun…

Home again now, and recovering from the operation I had on Saturday to remove my frankly rather inept gall bladder. I’m feeling pretty good, considering, but have been told I mustn’t lift O or M for about a fortnight, which will most likely prove problematic at some point.

This was the first time I’ve had abdominal surgery – I’ve had the one general anaesthetic before when they whipped two of my widsom teeth out – and I must say, I’m surprised by how well I seem to be doing. On Saturday I felt pretty woozy for about four or five hours after coming round, but since then I’ve mostly just been rather sore and a little sorry for myself. The strangest thing has been how I’ve been subconsciously comparing it to previous stays in hospital, and surprising myself when things that happened then haven’t happened this time.

The biggest example has been comparing this to childbirth. Honestly, I’ve been walking around hunched over a fair amount, because I have several holes in my abdomen, and that reminds me somewhat of hobbling around having just given birth. But there are no other similarities really, so I’ve caught myself being surprised on say, sitting down, to find that it doesn’t hurt. Or I’ve been taken aback slightly by just how much my shoulders ache (as obviously they didn’t after giving birth), and how weak this has made my arms. But, adding up the pluses and minuses, I think I’ve come out trumps. Sure, I’m down an organ, but I’m bouncing back well.

I did have a seizure on Saturday, while I was still groggy from the anaesthetic, but as I didn’t thrash around at all – the only reason I could tell it apart from general wooziness was the fact my eyelids were fluttering – no one else noticed at the time. I actually rang my buzzer and had to tell the nurse that I’d just had a seizure, I was okay, but it should probably go in her notes on me so as to keep them accurate. I seem to have struck gold with nurses the last week or so though, because a relative of hers had epilepsy, and she was quite relaxed about the whole thing. She just asked how long it had gone on for, and then what she should do if I had another one. I was also quite relieved when she accepted that I’ve been having them almost daily recently and that this shouldn’t delay my going home any further than the epilepsy already had – I automatically had to stay overnight for what would otherwise have been day surgery.

Anyway, I’m still a little weary, so I’ll wind down for now. I can’t say I slept fantastically last night or the night before, (who knew that surgery could do that to you, eh?) and tiring myself further is just inviting bad news. Hopefully in a week or so I’ll be back to normal. Or as normal as I ever am, at any rate.