Saturday, December 31, 2011

4 Days Post- Op

Well dang! I was just about to complete my post when the power flickered so all was lost. I shall try this once again.

I am still having pain but I guess that is to be expected. I was able to sleep better last night with only waking a few times so that is a good thing. I am hoping to be able to return to work on Tuesday but at this point I am not so sure. I know I can not make it for 10-12 hour days but maybe I can do 8. It's hard to believe I actually have this device in my head. Doctors can actually give sound to deaf people, is that not incredible to think about? After living this for 2 years, I can only say it is a miracle.

My thoughts are now on activation day! This will be the day that sound enters my world again. I can not begin to express how thrilled I am at that thought but there is also a bit of me that is worried, even scared. There are NO guarantees! I have to keep that thought in my head and not be too hopeful. This is so hard. We are told to keep our expectations low but our hopes high. Just how do you do that?

Hearing Journey is a support group I am part of. I would have never made it this far without them. Since the recall ended there have been many, many surgeries and activations take place. The results have been remarkable. I want so much to be part of that "successful" group but what if I am not? There is no way to know until activation. It is going to be a long month with this weighing heavily on my mind. 26 days to go...

Thursday, December 29, 2011

2 Days Post-Op

Getting better everyday. :)
The (un)pressure bandage came off today. As you can see in the photo I posted yesterday, it was not tight. I am not complaining at all because this is often an issue with many. I am now able to take Advil for the pain and that is helping lots. I am able to shower today and wash my hair but I am going to wait a bit. I am a little nervous about handling that ear. There seems to be little swelling and little jaw pain. Bonnie says the incision is red so she is keeping an eye on that and I am praying for no infection!

Here is a picture of the bandage close up. I was surprised to see the smileys! LOL

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Surgery Day

It is all over and what a day it was!

My first disappointment was when I arrived at the hospital at 5am. I was told that my surgery would be at 9:30 not 7:30. I was not nervous at all and if I could have gone at 7:30 I don't think I would have. But around 8:30 it was getting the best of me. I asked if I could have something to calm me down and was told yes but that didn't happen until they were wheeling me in for surgery. The next thing I remember is the anesthesiologist (however that is spelled) waved goodbye to me. Nap time! I was in for a rough start when I woke up. I have mentioned tinnitus before. I have seen many refer to "freight train" tinnitus before and I thought I knew what that was. Holy cow! There are no words to describe how bad this is. The nurse gave me something for that and also something for pain. I looked over and saw what she gave me and wanted to cry. The only time I know of taking this, I threw up all night. NOT GOOD! I tell the nurse and she gives me something for that. Nausea was bad but I managed not to throw up so I am thankful for that. I have had no dizziness, vertigo or balance issues at all.

Now we have the pain. This is an area that really upsets me. I NEVER get what I need because doctors do not listen to patients when it comes to pain meds. On my first visit with my surgeon, I had the conversation with him about the problems I have with pain meds. He asked what worked for me and I told him. He said he would write that so I was happy. So on my pre-op visit last week I brought in an old RX (over a year old) to show him because the mg. makes a difference. Mine were stronger than he was going to write so he told me just to take what I have. I questioned this because they were expired not to mention I only had 6 pills. He said it would be fine. Ok.... NOT!

I took one after leaving the hospital for the 2 hour ride home. It did nothing. Once we got home, my sister-in-law got on the phone. She was told to have me take 2 of what was not working. LOL I sometimes wish doctors had to deal with this end of things. I bet 99% would have a different attitude. I do understand their need to "control" pain meds but you would think my having an old RX with pills left would tell him I will not abuse them.I actually thought this doctor would listen to me but I guess he falls into that category with the rest.

I am better this morning. I ended up taking someone elses RX. Not something I wanted to do but I needed rest. I got some rest and the pain is better albeit 3am. LOL I am going to see if I can make it today without pain meds.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

48 hours from now I will be in surgery. Wow! This REALLY is going to happen! I am not nervous about the surgery, just as I thought. I am however becoming more and more anxious. Not about the surgery but instead about the outcome once it is activated. I am rested now, having a few days off. Not working gives me lots of time to think.. not always a good thing! LOL

There was a sign I saw on facebook a week or so ago that I also posted there. This is what it said..
Dear Past: Thank you for your lessons
Dear Future: I'm ready
Dear God: Thank you for another chance
This really hit home with me. I hope to take this chance and run with it.

I must have been good this year! Christmas was very nice and I was so surprised at all the acts of kindness. I bought myself a Kindle. I have never owned any of the electronic gadgets but this purchase is to help me with rehab. I absolutely love this little thing! Confusing at first but once I got it all straight, it is something I should have already had. Who knew? I do read a lot and this will sure be nice compared to having a book in tow. It will also read to me which is where rehab comes in. I can follow along with text to try to understand what I am hearing. I also got a gift card, basket of baked goodies, a candle and some PJ's.

As you can see, I am rambling! Jumping from one thing to another, I probably shouldn't be posting. I decided to go ahead so years from now I can look back and see where I was. Anxious, anxious! I think that best describes what I am feeling. Tomorrow I will see that everything is done before surgery. Cleaning, laundry etc. I had the arm from my glasses removed so I can see after surgery. I have my neck pillow, dry/erase board and comfy clothes all together. I have stocked up on soups, yogurts etc. I can't think of anything else I need to do but I am sure there is something!

We are not getting a room in Tampa so Tuesday morning I will be leaving the house at 3am, at the hospital by 5:15 and surgery at 7:30. I am glad it will be an early day. By lunchtime we should be heading for home. :-)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Pre-Op Is Done

My day started at 3:30am this morning. Tampa is 2 hours from here with NO traffic and you just never know about I-4. Morning appointments I leave 3 hours early and usually make it with a few minutes to spare. I hate being late. I also don't like to throw on clothes and out the door...

I left here at 5am for a 8am appointment. Being that early I didn't hit much traffic (*note to self*) so arrived in time to have breakfast first. Glad I did! I don't know if any of you have been to Tampa General or not but it is like a city in itself. There is even a Starbucks there. When I am done with the doctor, nurses and paperwork, I am off to the hospital to get pre-admitted. These ladies I dealt with at the hospital were amazing! Not one of them cared that I could not understand a word they said, they just waved it off and said "we will make it work". And we did! My only real fear in all of this is waking up from surgery with everyone wearing masks and me not knowing what anyone is saying. I was assured this will not happen. I can't wait to see how this works out. I do have a dry/erase board I will be taking with me just in case.

Finished up there and everything completed now. I stopped on the way home and I have all the meds. I need. I also stopped and got the arm removed from my glasses so I will be able to see after surgery. I think everything is covered now and six days to go.

Surgery will be at 7:30 Tuesday morning and I have to be there at 5:15. I am still debating on getting a room or leaving from home at 3am....

Friday, December 16, 2011

11 Days Until Surgery!!.... almost 10 now :-)

I only have 3 more days to work! I will be so glad when those days are done because work has been really stressful. I got an email today from the surgery coordinator saying my pre-op has been rescheduled. I will go Wednesday at 8am and since it is in Tampa, I will have to take that day off work and leave home at 5am. LOL Wednesday will be the perfect day to do this though. I can make it through two days then get a break and only have one more day to do. I will make it! The good thing too is we are off work the week of my surgery so I may not miss any work if I do well with surgery. I just have to wait and see. I am so looking forward to having this done that I don't think I will get nervous at all about surgery. My surgeon is one of the best in the country so I know I am in good hands there.

My nerves will come into play when it is time for activation. That is the moment of truth. Will I hit the jackpot as so many have that I know? Or will it be a ways down the road before I can make sense of what I am hearing? There is no way to predict the outcome. Everyone is different. I am willing to work however hard I have to to make this work for me but will that be enough? We shall find out the end of January.

I got the sweetest gift in the mail last week. A total surprise. There is a lady that is local (Orlando) that I have been talking to online. She is a month ahead of me in getting a CI and she will be activated next week. We have talked a bit and she offered to send me a few things I would need for surgery since she is seeing the same surgeon I am. This consisted of pre surgery body wash, RX ointment for the wound and nausea pills in case I need them. That in itself was very sweet of her. Low and behold when the package arrived there was more. She also included a beautiful Christmas card, a dry/erase board to take to the hospital and the most comfy PJ's you have ever worn! This package brought tears to my eyes. Once I am activated, we are going to have to meet for lunch sometime to see if we can hear each other. This will be great fun!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Quick Update

I got another email from my audie yesterday. She said they have not been trained yet to program the Neptune so she is not able to order it. But... she will order the BTE for me and when the Neptune is available, I will be able to upgrade! It may happen by the time I am activated which is Jan. 26th but she can not say for sure. Doesn't matter to me when, at least I know I can have it! I am still excited!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


Neptune... this is the name of the sound processor I will be getting. I am very excited about it for many reasons. This processor is not a BTE (behind the ear) processor. It is what is called a BWP (body worn processor). I really think this will be the best option for me because I was never comfortable with my old hearing aids. I wore them of course so I could hear but it was not comfortable. It is not a vanity thing at all. I would strap bullhorns on my head if it meant I could hear! LOL

Technology has come a long way. This processor is the size of a tube of lipstick! There will be lots of options as to where I can wear it. This is powered by one AAA battery. You can use disposable or rechargeable batteries. This is a great option! There will be no worry of "do I have the charger with me?" I will always be able to hear. Another great feature this baby has is it is water PROOF! I can go swimming and still be able to hear! This is the only processor that offers that.

This processor was just approved by the FDA last week. Maybe this is the reason my journey has taken so long. I do believe things happen for a reason so maybe this is it. I wasn't sure if I would be able to get this one but my audie says I can. I am happy! 21 days to go.....