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Hospital Day

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Claudine went into the hospital today for something called a rectosele repair. You might have figured out what part of the body is involved in a rectosele repair because of the term recto in that word. Yes, I'm writing about my wife's ass. Apparently (and I thank God again that men can't get pregnant) when a woman gives birth things can happen in that region. Things that aren't pleasant. Things like muscles getting torn by the strain of pushing. Things like rectal muscles. Look, do I have to draw you a map here? I'm no medical lecturer, damnit! The real problem was that this muscle tear wasn't noticed after the first baby. And that babies numbers two and three didn't help any. Man, childbirth is a nasty, beautiful, disgusting, wonderful thing. Women are really pretty cool to even think about having a little (!?) baby grow inside them that needs to be pushed out causing carnage and destruction on the way.

I exaggerate. Childbirth doesn't have to be like that. When we (ha! we)had Jake, Claudine didn't know anywhere near as much about the childbirth process as she does now. She knows that when circumstances dictate and the baby needs to come out quickly that certain damage can happen to the mother. But ideally the whole thing should be a controlled process that requires little to no repair to the mother after the baby is delivered. But that didn't happen when she delivered Jake. So it's off to the hospital for us.

And now it's 8:50 and here I sit in the waiting room. Her surgery was scheduled for 8:15 to 9:45 and shockingly it went off on time. We had to get in to the hospital at 6:15 in the morning for admissions though. It was kind of like going to the airport. You get up early, get all your stuff ready, show up and wait. You check in and you wait some more. I didn't get frisked though. Kind of disappointed about that.

It must be strange for Claudine to be a patient here. There is a whole balance of power thing between patient and the rest of the hospital staff. The patient is vulnerable and apprehensive - and half-naked with that Fitz-Nun hospital gown. Now Claudine is on the other side of the power equation. She's the one that is half-naked and vulnerable. To make it worse, everyone here knows her here. All the OR nurses, all the anesthesialogists and all the intern doctors. Every knows that she's in here to have the muscles in her ass repaired. From the beginning, she was totally upfront with everyone because she knew that there was no way that she would be able to keep it a secret anyway. She's handled it very well considering that doctors that she has helped train will be digging into her crotch while she's up on an operating table with her legs raised and spread like the letter V. Reading that sentence makes it look like her operation is being handled by amateurs. Not true. The intern doctors that she helped train are only assisting with the operation. Claudine didn't screw around when picking out a doctor. She got the head of the OB/GYN department to do her operation. She's not trusting her ass to anyone else. But I think that allowing the interns to assist is a nice thing to do. She knows that the more cases that these intern doctors see, the better doctors they will become. Even if it means operating on her own ass.

9:30 AM: Dr. G. just came out to the waiting room and told me that everything went well with the operation. She said that everything looked good, she found "everything she was looking for" (which in this context is a phrase that kind grosses me out for some reason), and she repaired it all. Now they roll her up to the recovery room where she'll sit for about an hour or so. And after that Dr. G. says they're gonna throw me out because the muscles will be spasming so much (gross!) that the best way to deal with it is to just sleep. That's fine with me. I just want her to get back to normal as quickly as possible. And I want her to have as little pain as possible from this thing. Causing her pain is MY job, damnit!

11:00 AM: One of Claudine's parters came down to the waiting room to escort me up to the recovery room. Someimtes it's nice to have connections. I got into the recovery room and Claudine looked happy and chipper. Not at all miserable and groggy like I was when I had my nose and throat operation. Of course, she couldn't feel the lower half of her body. She was just starting to get feeling back in her feet and being able to move her legs. I needed to go down to the car and get her bag for overnight. I asked her if this would be a good time even though she wouldn't be going up to her room for awhile. The reason that she wasn't going up to her room is that she specifically asked the hospital's patient representative if they could make sure that Claudine wasn't placed into a room with one of her patients. She didn't care about sharing a room - she just didn't want to be suffering and waddling in front of one of her patients. The patient rep went Claudine one better. She assigned her to the one private room on the floor. The only problem was that the person in that room wasn't being discharged until the afternoon. Anyway, Claudine said it was a good time to go down to get her bag. Well in the fifteen minutes that it took me to go down to my car and back, Claudine had changed from happy, beautiful and chipper to pale, suffering and nauseaous. She was all curled up on her bed and we finally got the nurse to come over and start the serious pain medication. Mmmmm, morphine.....

Once she got the morphine, Claudine kind of shut down. She was basically asleep without actually, you know, being asleep. I left. I know that sounds heartless, but it was our plan. I went back home so that Claudine's mom (who was watching Annie and Bobby) could go and visit her daughter.

4:00 PM Claudine called. She sounded much better if not weak. She said she was just getting moved up to her room now. I told her to keep hitting the morphine and I would see her in the morning. I hope that she gets some rest. I know the pain she is feeling is much more than she thought she would feel. She was trying to be brave but it totally blindsided her. Hopefully this will be the worst night and things will only get better from here.