Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Sticking My Neck Out - (20 Minutes Before Going Into The Operating Room) - IMRAN™

I knew how serious the expected 7-hours long, 3-discs & 1-vertebra removing, plus 3-vertebrae fusion, surgery was. The grave danger I was facing was not lost on me. (As the Tom Cruise/Jack Nicholson dialog goes, in ‘A Few Good Men’…. “Grave danger?” “Is there another kind?”). 
The surgeon was very clear about the serious risks. These included lifelong swallowing and speaking problems, as well as voice changes. I told him I cannot sing, so there was no singing career at risk. I joked that if, as a side effect, I could suddenly start singing that would be fine with me. 
But, in all seriousness, there were more serious possible complications to worry about. Paralysis, stroke, and even table death. Based on my accident history, and other multi-generational family histories of fatal strokes, paralyses, and heart failure deaths from medical treatments, the last three were far more serious. 
They were more than "the usual warnings" doctors give. That is why I had so much to do before the surgery. Knowing full well there was no guarantee of coming out of it alive, I had to juggle the close of the financial year at work (successfully completing a massive project at work in the last week of June). 
I did that even as I privately knew that my whole org was being laid off, with no expectation of my keeping my job (and health insurance!). There was no point stressing over what I could not control. 
All I could control was my attitude and approach in the moment.So, on top of that pressure, I also had to work on putting my life affairs in order.  Will, trusts, healthcare directives, all that boring and tedious stuff so many people avoid assuming that they will have time later. My advice, just do it, while you can. 
Fortunately, I was able to do all that in time. I was able to file the papers with attorneys and the state, place the documents in a safe location, and tell my family details the details. 
Then I was off to the hospital to see what fate held in store for me. With the 20-minutes warning that I would be in the operating room soon, it was time to take one more (hopefully not final) smiling selfie. 
Grateful and blessed, disheveled but smiling, having been awake a full 48 hours. Click… and then it was off to the operating room… and a whole new “adventure.”

© 2023 IMRAN™

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