Saturday, February 9, 2008

Pre-op prep and freak out

It's amazing how time flies when you're about to have your jaw broken and wired shut. This this past month has been a roller coaster of emotions.

The first seven days, I was so excited I was practically vibrating with energy. It was finally happening, finally, after all that waiting! I skipped around the office with a maniacal grin. My co-worker said that I should be the poster gal for jaw surgery. She's right. Maybe if that happens, I'll be able to make up for the shortfall in cash when I'm on disability recovering from the surgery. Poster gal has got to be a paying gig, right? Especially if I show a little cleavage.

I was a flurry of Internet shopping. First were the Zip-n-Squeeze bags that are popular on the jaw surgery forums in which I have been lurking. They are washable pouches with tubing at the top. You put liquid or puree into the pouch and squeeze it through the tube to eat when your jaw's wired. A friend of mine refers to these as my "feed bags."

Next was the Magic Bullet. It's that blender made famous by the late-night infomercials that will pulverize just about anything in ten seconds. I have to admit that the infomercials completely sucked me in and have tempted me for years. But I couldn't justify spending that much on a blender. Until now. Come to mama.

Then, I browsed the book store for a cookbook full of soup recipes. The plan was to make a few in advance and freeze them in portion-sized containers so I won't have to worry about cooking when I'm convalescing at home after the surgery.

The physical things purchased, I moved on to shopping for health care practitioners. I went to my naturopath and had her order a schwack of homeopathic remedies for things such as healing, bruising, swelling, scar tissue, nerve damage, and anything else I could think of. I also made some appointments with her for acupuncture following the surgery.

I found myself an MLD massage therapist who can help with the lymphatic drainage before and after the surgery, which reduces bruising and swelling. I made several pre-op physiotherapy appointments. And last, but not least, I called in a favour to my friend, the Reiki master. Two weeks ago, she taught me the first level of Reiki, so that I can work on healing myself after the surgery.

But then, at about the one week mark, once all the shopping was done, I started getting apprehensive. Not so much about the surgery itself, but about the long recovery. About having my jaw wired shut and my face swollen and bruised and not being able to eat or talk. Feeling claustrophobic. Finding a variety of foods to eat that can be sucked through a straw. Freaking out about missing work and going on disability. Worrying about being in a hospital in a city two hours away from my family and most of my friends. Wondering who will drive me home once I am discharged from the hospital.

Just thinking about it made my jaw muscles tense up and gave me the painful migraines that the surgery itself is supposed to relieve.

How I feel varies from day to day, and I'm sure will continue to bounce around from emotion to emotion for the next three [yikes!!] days.

So, yes, here I am. In the middle of all of that, making soup like a madwoman.

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