Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Why and Wherefore I'm Alive

Surgery day finally came around and I was blown away by all the kindness and support. I had tons of texts, several friends changed their facebook pictures to one with me in them, several more of their status were asking for prayers, positive vibes. One friend stated that whatever people’s hobbies were (ie praying to this or that deity, sacrificing animals, sending out positive vibes etc) to please do so on my behalf. No one had stayed with me the night before so I went out first thing in the morning and walked about two miles through the hospital lobby to kill some time and get some exercise.

They came in and checked things throughout the morning and finally told me that it had been moved up to noon. I made my own facebook status about that when I found out and again was blown away by how many people commented with some way of wishing me well in just a short time. One friend commented that many people caring said something about me though I responded with the truth, that it said something about them. Still, the reason I was fighting all this was to stay with my wife and my daughter. I even kicked my mother out for the last little while just to stay with my wife and call Kiana as the last few things I did before the surgery, updating my own status to a quote from song that I had listened to often over the last several weeks regarding my wife “She may be the reason I survive, the why and wherefore I’m alive for where she goes I’ve got to be, the reason for my life is She.”

Our last conversation before the surgery was differed a lot from the one before the biopsy. I told her to please make sure she made the dreambook page if something went wrong. She stated she would and she would try to fulfill many of the other dreams with Kiana. Unlike the last time, there wasn’t a single tear down her cheek. We talked about her updating my status as a way of communicating with people but I was hoping, daring to dream that I could do it myself so we made a deal that at 10
o’clock she would do it but if I came to before then I would. She didn’t want to be over specific or try to be clever and stated she with one of the following:
1) Surgery went well/had minor complication/had major complications. Will update in a day or two
2) Iram passed away please contact Todd Geldon if you want to be updated regarding funeral details.

I had sat with Todd and my wife separately about what to do if I passed away. I had been researched that the death rate of this surgery was about 5%. While some friends had mentioned that this seemed low, I couldn’t think of any other days where I had a 1 in 20 chance of dying through truth be told it was my understanding that Dr. Friedman’s batting average was much much lower. In regards to the funeral, the simple fact was that I wasn’t interested, in face had joked (but with some seriousness) that they should just cremate me and flush me down the toilet. They’d both blown me off about that and said that funerals were for other people but had agreed to keep it lighthearted and to do it somewhere like a house or a restaurant with no body because the body without my spirit, mind and heart wouldn’t be me so that was something I wanted avoided. My wife and I also had an odd and uncomfortable conversation that morning where she stated that if I passed away that she didn’t ever want to get married again, she wanted to just be single and in due time maybe be with someone but that she didn’t want anything as intense as what we had. She didn’t want to go to a life that was as pushy or ambitious as I took it. This was disappointing to me and I told her that she was amazing and incredible and to not become ordinary, that she and the world would be both getting robbed.

They came in asked me to donate the excess tissue they would remove for research (excess being what they took out beyond what was necessary for tests). I joked with several people that day and since about how they should be jealous that I got asked to donate my brain to science despite that it was clearly for the wrong reasons. Shortly after that, they came to get me. I hug and kissed my mother and held my wife’s hands for a while and hugged and kissed her. She was the reason I was getting this surgery, I’d taken her opinion over all else’s because I trusted her more than anyone and because if anything went wrong, the liability fell heaviest on her. She, the meaning of my life, was the last non medical person I saw and the first one I hoped to see coming out.

I went into the prep room where the nurses and doctors again laughed at my attitude and a few cracked I made about how they should make sure that they inserted super powers and smart alecky remarks in reaction to this or that question. They told me that they were going to put me to sleep and started to inject the anesthesiology; I consciously chose to think about Kiana and her mom and went unconscious very much at peace.

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