“Sarah?” the lady in scrubs opened the door, and I knew my time had come. 2:45
I hadn’t been nervous about my wisdom tooth surgery until I entered the operating room.
I sat in the chair, feeling my heart beat a little quicker, and noticed the various machines to my left.
The nurse strapped down my arms, stuck three heart monitor sensors on my chest, checked my blood pressure, put an oxygen sensor on a finger, and attached an oxygen tube that nestled up against my nose. It smelled like plastic and tickled.
She asked me if I wanted to keep my teeth when it was over, and placed a special bag for them under a blue sheet of paper a few feet away. That must have been where the surgical tools were kept. How thoughtful of them to not let the patients see them!
The doctor and a few other attendants came in. He sat down beside me, placed a stress ball in my hand, and told me to squeeze. Next thing I knew, he wrenched a tourquinet tight, cleaned the skin on my elbow, and I looked away as he stuck the IV needle in. Three seconds of sharp pain. I watched as something clear was pumped in my arm. “What’s in that?” I asked. “Some medicines,” he replied. “How long until I fall asleep?” “You should be feeling woozy now,” the nurse replied. “I need you to take some deep breaths, okay?” another nurse told me.
I leaned back as she tilted my head back and propped my mouth open with a plastic black piece. I started giggling as my vision started to swim. “I see you grinning. You’re feeling it now, aren’t you?” she asked. “Yup,” I replied. Then I blacked out.
I dreamed about something.
I vaguely remember being moved to a cot in another room, and a nurse placing the ice pack headband on me. I held on to her as she led me to the car, my legs very unsteady. I could think clearly by the time we were driving home. 3:30. I couldn’t speak coherently, but I sure could think straight. Mom kept telling me I shouldn’t try to talk, but there was so much I wanted to know. Had everything gone well? What did the nurse tell her about the recovery process? Being loopy is kind of fun. The gauze in my mouth and useless tongue make speaking pretty useless. So I just reached for her hand and made an I-love-you sign. We held hands the whole way back. I didn’t feel any pain, as I was so high on medications and very loopy. This occured to me.
I won’t remember most of what I’m saying right now, huh?
Probably not, honey.
And I don’t.
Once we got home, I laid on the couch and slept for three hours. When I woke up, the fun was gone. Pain. I couldn’t feel my tongue or any of my lower jaw, and some muscles in my left leg were killing me from the anesthesia. I used a lot of sign language that night.
It has been twenty hours since the surgery; I have slept a lot and taken more pills than I would like to in a month; all eating goes very slowly; last night I was miserable, dizzy, and nauseous.