As I'm laying on a hospital bed wearing a pretty blue bonnet and being warmed by a blankey the male nurse, also in matching blue bonnet, asks how I injured my knee. He's wheeling me through the corridor to the surgery suite and passes by the DaVinci room saying I can have that room next time. Hopefully, I say, there will be no next time. "So, how'd you injured it?" he asks again. Persistent little nurse, isn't he? I tell him I'm not sure, but I am positive the surf machine at the Luau didn't help. He asks, "Wow sounds fun, how long ago was that?" And, sensing I'm about to be ridiculed for being almost 40 and drinking while attempting to surf, I say, quietly, "last summer." He laughs and pushes me through the door, banging the sides as we go in. I slide onto the table and the anethesiologist asks, "How'd you hurt your knee?" I look at the male nurse in his silly blue bonnet and say, "On a surf machine, when I was 21." He smiles.
The next thing I know I'm awake, shivering as a different nurse (a female this time, without a blue bonnet) says, "You're awake! Would you like something to drink?" I ask for the apple juice and it arrives in a cute plastic cup full of ice and juice. Did I mention I was shivering???? Apple Juice over ice did NOT help. By the time they decide I can dress (in my SHORTS since I did not know heating a hospital would be an issue) my teeth are chattering and my shoulders are shivering. (Later the nurse tells me the room is cold because it slows the growth of bacteria. I tell her if she'd told me that in the first place I wouldn't have spent the last few minutes bitching...)
We do a quick exit discussion with Marti (driver, co-worker, confidant) and end up being "shooosed" numerous times by the other nurse who is trying to talk to the elderly lady with the eye patch. Apparently we are having too much fun. Isn't that what exiting the hospital should be about...I mean, if I were that old lady I'd be glad to be leaving. She hasn't much time left.
I am wheeled to the waiting car (Thanks again, Marti) and the nurse says I'm good to go! I, ever the smart arse, say, "Wow, with this knee fixed surely Mr. Right will come along" just as the chubby but adorably stupid male nurse who I saw constantly dropping stuff and annoying the other nurses, drops something in front of us. The nurse helping me whispers, "He's single but you could do better." Then she says, "you're funny, if I knew anyone single you'd be the first on my list." Aww, I made a friend. She helps me into the car and off we go, driving as Marti does, warp speed with me sitting there, shivering, and this time more out of fear. :)
At home, the dogs are excited, so much so that Baits runs into the field and away. We spend a few moments yelling at him and he actually comes home on his own. Wow. Miracle. That's good because Marti was thinking about calling the neighbor with the gun, I can tell. Trout accidently bumps me only once, then notices I have a bandage on my knee, sniffs, then suddenly turns into super dog. She mellows and starts following me closer than before.
Later Trout ends up laying by the couch as I sit with the bag of ice on my knee (hmm didn't I have a bag of ice here last week, a little higher? Damn). I think about when I can stand again, when I can shower, when I can walk, and when I can jog. I look down at my knee, bandaged up and already healing...and I fondly see my doctor's initials there. I think of how many times and how many different nurses, doctors, and probably janitorial staff walked past and asked me the same questions over and over.
"What's your name and birthdate?" I actually mention I am wearing the bracelet that tells me that information so maybe they should try something a little more difficult.
"Had anything to drink or eat?" No. The old lady next to me DID have something so I comment that some people don't follow directions very well.
"Have any piercings or other jewlery you haven't removed?" No.I am curious now...
"Any loose fillings or broken dentures in your mouth?" Um, no I tell the fifth person and I'd like it to stay that way.
And then, my memories shift and I'm back to the doctor's initials. Hot Doc's initials. Hot doc who I will see only once again, post op appointment next week. When I'll be just some patient he used to have, just another pretty knee. And I think back to him writing on my leg. And I think back to all the chances I had to impress. And yet, me being ever the arse, instead I said,
"Wow, I'm glad you're not operating on my head or you would have written that on my forehead." He looks at it and looks at me and I say, "ESY." And he smiles and says, yeah, just missing the "A".
Thanks Marti for the help and Hot Doc for the memories. And, thank you male nurse for the superman bandaid I found today on my stitches. You guys are the bestest.