These past two whole weeks had proven to be the most hectic weeks of my life ever.
Starting with an ultrasound on the Monday of Holy Week, followed with an appointment to a surgeon on Wednesday when I saw the result and then the setting up of schedule for the operation on the following Saturday. The whole week of waiting for the day of operation was excruciating with worrying for the cost and, of course, the operation itself, whether the whole procedure will occur without a hitch and all the negative things that could happen on that day were runing through my mind.
Finally, the day, April 22, 2017, came with all the brightness and heat of a hot summer day.
We left the house, which was almost an hour drive from the hospital, three hours earlier and waited for another hour on a bench across the hospital’s pharmacy before I went to the admitting section and submitted the documents necessary to get the approval for surgery from the billing section. It only took fifteen minutes to fill up forms, secure the approval and present the same together with the surgeon’s orders at the operating room. Time check: 11:15am. The operation was supposed to be scheduled at 12 noon.
Another two hours of relentless waiting at the hallway inside the operating room, with my daughter being interviewed and prepared for the operation after signing the consent for the procedure, made the day more dramatic, with me feeling like I was the one at the edge of the precipice instead of just being the guardian and a very worried mother.
At around 1:10 pm, my daughter finally entered the operating room on her own two feet. Was I sounding like a very proud mother? She had just entered when the walls felt like it vibrated with the angry berating of the anesthesiologist for seeing her parient made to walk to her bed at the operating room. It was only then we knew that she should have been wheeled or laid down on a gurney to the room. I felt too bad for the friendly and good-natured young man who interviewed my daughter and led her to the operating room. Thank goodness, all was well because she didn’t fall over or feel dizzy when she went in.
Almost an hour later, she was transferred to the recovery room and I was happy enough to see her peacefully sleeping.
We were advised to have our lunch since it will take another hour before she wakes up from sedation. We never had the appetite to eat more than a serving each of french fries bought from a nearby food chain store and a regular-size cup of softdrink my husband and I shared between the two of us. I just couldn’t wait to see when my daughter is going to open her eyes from sedation. Stories of people not waking up from sedation kept playing on my mind making me fidget and fret. It was like waging a battle of faith against fear for my daughter. I kept on praying she would wake up when she was supposed ro wake up.
When she finally did wake up almost an hour after she was transferred to the recovery room, I was one happy mama when I saw her open her eyes. Time check: 3:08pm. She was doing much better.
The attending nurse at the recovery room told me she would call me to come over when it was time for my daughter to change back into street clothes after she had rested for another hour or two. In the meantime, I was told to process her clearance.
Two hours later, the male nurse gathered her change of clothing. She was alert enough to change into her clothes with my help and the female nurse. After she had changed, the nurse made her sit on a plastic chair and I was ushered out again to wait outside until the nurse felt it safe to call for a wheelchair. A few minutes later the nurse had to take back the tube for the oxygen she had already given to me (somewhat like a souvenir of the operation) and put it back on because she had gone pale while sitting on the chair. When I looked into her, she was back on the hospital bed with the oxygen and the monitors back again with her blood pressure at 97/74.
Oh my God! That was like standing me up on a plank with nothing but rough waters below. That moment, I rather chose to be on that bed than standing a few feet from it, frozen with worry at how white her lips were. I thought that was the worst of it. A few minutes later, we were told to prepare some crackers and my husband thoughtfully bought water with it and I was instructed to let her nibble on it. She first asked for water. She took three or four sips at the most and took a small bite of cracker when she began to gag. Can you imagine how a mother would feel at the sight of her newly-operated daughter heaving at such few intake of water and cracker? I was told again to wait outside.
Finally, after almost two hours of waiting outside of the recovery room, the nurse informed me my daughter is finally sitting again on a chair and nibbling on a piece of cracker. An attendant was called to wheel her from the recovery room which happened to be at the second floor down to the ground floor.
The more than five hours stay at the operating room was finally over. Relief washed over me as we drove our way home, with her comfortably ensconced on piles of throw pillows my husband brought along for the drive, dozing off all the way home.
Narrating the entire event this way, made me see how I must have overreacted over the whole deal, how the entire event made me feel like I aged by the.minute while waiting for her to rouse up enough for us to go home. In those five to six hours, I fluctuate from one minute a deep believer to a wavering mother in another. I began to think about what had I done in the past that may have placed me in this situation. Indeed when.one is faced with situations where one or one’s family are in danger, we began to think we might be being punished for a wrong done or like Job, our faith is being tested.
No matter what though, one thing I realized is that God loves me for despite my doubts and incessant worrying, He had shown me in so.many ways and in lots of time that He is always there for.me, that when I call for Him in my dire need, He does not forsake me. I may feel at times, my faith is being tested, but I know, time and time again, that God will be by my side.