The Surgical Story / by Reginald Crump

The Dr. enters.

Puts on his Latex gloves.

Grabs gauze and begins to squeeze Mount Rushmore until it erupts.

Puss goes everywhere!

All over the Dr., my mom, the office door and all of the equipment and bed.

He stands up to grab a towel and slips on the now slippery floor covered in puss and bangs his head against the sink counter and scale.

Well not really, I'm exaggerating, but isn't it fun to imagine that?

The relief from having him squeezing the puss out of what is now a horrific boil was so satisfying. In my mind I was like "ah, yes, thank you, that's all I needed. Have a good rest of the day, (smiley face)!"

Not so much.

As if reciting from the medical manual he repeated "normally I'd insert a needle and withdraw the fluid, but the skin is so badly infected I risk inserting infection deeper into the joint. I'm gonna send you next door to ER and get their opinion."

4th ER visit?


I guess.

This is getting way to dramatic, even for my taste.

He wraps it up, my mom wheels me out, grabs my father and we begin the journey out of the building and into ER next door.

We wait a little longer this time and finally my name is called.

I'm rolled into the back and the same Dr I'd seen the day before recognizes me, "I remember you! How's that knee doing?"

I remove the bandage and the look in her face was... "oh! Urgh!" "We"re gonna go ahead and admit you, can you make your way up onto the bed?"

Almost instantly I have IV's and bags are being filled.

"This is morphine to help with the pain and prepare for surgery tomorrow. We'll  go in and clean that up for you."

I guess I'm spending the night.

Everyone assures I'm going to be ok. My mom leaves because by now it's time for my fathers medication and lunch time is approaching. I'll be speaking on the phone with her later in the evening. Because of the distance to drive and the retiring sun, I didn't expect to see her anymore that day.

I get moved into a room. A very nice room, with a view of the parking lot (which I can't see because I'm hooked to IV's). It's also equipped with a lifesaving TV and remote.

More HGTV.

Cell phone plugged in and by my side I made several calls that night. It was all I could do until I could Fall asleep for a good nights rest.

Not so much.

This was my first time being hospitalized, so I did t know that getting your vitals checked happens all through the night. By different shifts of people. This is also when I finally began to understand 1 to 10 level of pain.

In the emergency room the day before I was asked what my level of pain was from 1 to 10 I said "I have a very high tolerance for pain, I was bullied as a child" and laughed it off.

Everyone I talked to on the phone wanted to know what time I was to have surgery. I'd been told first thing in the morning around 7 or 8am.

Next morning.

It's Christmas Eve.

It's now 8:45 and I'm not in surgery. I call Manchild, I call home to my parents, I call my sister. I start going through the list of closest friends, but not wanting to alarm anyone.

Time passes, it's approaching afternoon. I go through my series of phone calls in the same order. Everyone has the same question, "what time are you going into surgery?"

I realize that the questions are starting to wear on my nerves, which is probably sending my blood pressure up. I appreciate everyones concern and realize that they don't know that everyone is asking the same questions, wanting answers and I can only tell them so much. I try to focus on my breath in hopes to hide that I have zero nerves left.

"The last time I was told the time of surgery was she said it would be this afternoon."

More time passes.

I'm chilling.

Still no surgery.

3:30 approaches.

Before I could call anyone, I had two younger gentleman at the foot of my bed asking me my full name, date of birth and giving me the run down of what was about to happen and "sign this paper work."