I was not leaving the hospital without a shower. I discovered I really didn't give a rat's ass how hairy my legs were, but the hair and body needed to be washed. I was sure I looked (and smelled) like a DK.
The nursing staff wasn't terribly interested in getting me clean. I asked several times for help taking a shower, and finally, around noon, the nurse stuck these clear, plastic sheets over the four drains to protect them from water. That was the end of that. It became up to my husband to give me the shower, if I were going to have one.
While I dissed my husband on Facebook as being a lousy, whiny nurse in comparison to Kristin and Cindy, he actually was very good in the long run. The shower was just the beginning. Not that he gets any gold stars for technique. I sat on a shower chair and he sprayed me with the hand-held shower like I was a dog outside in a washtub. I had shampoo running down my face and into my eyes, and a good portion of it remained in my hair when it was over, but I was cleaner than I was when I went in.
I put on real clothes, where I discovered the drains were EXACTLY where the waistband of my yoga pants would go. Hadn't allowed for the drains, not having had a CLUE what they were going to be all about when I packed what to wear home. Mid-afternoon, I finally got my walking papers and was ready to get the hell out of there.
I stayed at my parents' house in Branson for a few days after leaving the hospital, slowly gaining the ability to walk upright. The tummy tuck portion of the surgery left my stomach tight as a drum; so tight, in fact, that I couldn't completely straighten up. It was almost as if I had atrophied into one side of a parenthesis. The drains made sleeping miserable. I devised a method of sleeping where I put my drains and tubing (in the fashionable little black bags) next to me on the bed and covered them with pillows so I had a place for my arms to lay. I was propped up with many pillows as well. Every trip to the bathroom or to go sit outside on the deck required that I unload all my pillows onto the floor, hang my little bags around my neck and carefully swing my legs over the edge of the bed without catching anything on the drain tubes. Then I had to do it all in reverse when I got back to bed.
|Sitting on the deck, soaking up sunshine.|
The days spent at the lake were a delightful transition from hospital to home. I got a lot of rest and got to watch mindless tv shows like "Dance Moms" without anyone whining about wanting to watch something else. But just as I was ready to leave the hospital, I was also ready to leave Branson and try to get back to some kind of routine at home. I imagined my family there, happy to see me, joyfully taking on the household duties of doing laundry, scooping the cat box, cooking, doing dishes. What a lovely fantasy....