Monday, December 13, 2010

I'm Baaaack.....

It’s been 5 days since my surgery. So far it’s been kind of a mixed bag. I’m super happy to report that the surgery was a total success. I woke up in the recovery room and all the pain and numbness was gone. The doctor told me that the swelling from the surgery might delay any positive results for a week or two, but so far…nothing!

On the downside, recovery from the surgery has proven to be very painful. Maybe some of the worst pain I’ve ever had. The narcotic that works the best for me is Dilaudid. Of course it makes me VERY sick to my stomach. Anti-nausea medication seems to have little or no effect.  So Wednesday and Thursday were pretty much spent pushing the narcotics button and then throwing up.  In the long run, it was worth it.  I came home on Thursday afternoon and the Dilaudid has been replaced by Codeine. It’s not nearly as effective of a pain killer, but at least it doesn’t make me sick.  Dilaudid and Codeine are both very addictive.  I’ve been down that road before, so I plan on taking the first exit I see. I plan to be off all painkillers in a couple of days.
A couple of people commented that they thought I was emailing from my hospital room. I didn’t take my laptop or phone with me. I was in no condition to do anything. I never turned the TV on even once during my stay….

Oh yeah, I almost forgot about the holes in the side of my head. To make sure everything stayed steady while he was operating, the surgeon put my head in a metal ring. It was secured with screws through my scalp and into the bone of my skull.  Man, do I ever wish I had a photo of that for this post.
It’s now Sunday evening and although I'm not totally comfortable, I finally feel up to turning on my laptop.  I didn’t want to wait any longer, because I wanted everyone to know how very appreciative I am for all the supportive words, positive thoughts, good karma, and prayers sent my way.  This is another example of how real the connections are, that we of the blogging community make with each other.   I’ll be posting this on Monday morning after I edit for drug induced errors…
Once again, Thanks so much to all of my friends out there!



  1. Glad to hear you're doing well. Yeah, some of the pain meds can cause more than help.

  2. Wow, Pat, what an ordeal! This all better be worth it!
    The pain must be REALLY bad, because nausea and throwing up are about the worse things I can imagine.
    I pray for your rapid recovery and and your improved health.
    God bless you, my brother.

  3. Happy to see you back, and to hear that the surgery went well. Screws in your scalp and skull?! That was a painful sentence to read! Hope you feel 100% soon!

  4. Delighted to hear that the surgery was a success, Pat, and I hope your recovery continues well.

  5. Pat, it is so gooood to have you back! Thought of you several times over the weekend, and it is nice to start Monday morning with your return.

    Were the holes in your head already there or did they have to drill 'em? (just a joke, son).

    Hang in there!

  6. Good to have you back, in good health and blogging regularly soon...should have got the anaesthetist to click one on his/her phone.... :)

  7. Congrats on the success! Hope the pain leaves shortly. I always wince when I see people getting things screwed into their heads on TV - does not look nice! But glad it worked out well for you anyway! :)

  8. So glad to hear it went well Pat! (not glad about the sick part...but thankful for the end result:) AND....So VERY GLAD YOU DO NOT have a photo for this post;))

  9. I'm so glad to hear that everything went well and that you are home now. Nothing speeds up recovery like sleeping in your own bed, eating homemade meals and getting spoiled. You are getting spoiled right? - G

  10. That's great! I hope the pain goes away and never returns.

  11. Yeah, Patrick! Good to hear from you and to hear the surgery was a success! Those holes in your head can be very useful for keeping a hat on, hanging keys, etc. so you may want to insert small screws now before they heal up.

    Great to hear from you and thanks for offering to loan me $1000.00 a few days back.

  12. glad to see you up and typing around. Dilaudid is pretty much heroin. so, yeah, glad you are off that.

  13. Good to have you back Pat! Hope you're off those meds soon...
    Take care x

  14. WOW! glad to hear you're back and that the surgery went well. hoping the pain is gone soon!

  15. I've been out of blogland for awhile. I just read about your surgery! I am happy to hear that you are recovering!!! I will definitely be keeping you in my prayers and thoughts.

  16. I sure am glad to hear that the surgery was successful, now you will be ready to get back to normal (scary huh?)!

  17. Wish you the best Patrick.
    Be good as new again.
    have a great week.. and want you 100% active by next.

  18. Great news... sooo happy that you
    are recovering and feel up to
    blogging... slow and easy until
    you are 100% again.

    Relax and feel the get better

    Happy Hols !!

  19. Welcome back.
    Glad to hear things went well.
    Onward and upward.

  20. You'll feel better every day. Congrats on making it through. Who doesn't dread surgery? I hate the knock out gas coming at me. I always think I'm gonna die.

    Holes in your head to clamp you still. That must have freaked you. If you do get a photo, post it.

  21. salarsen - Thanks so much! I liked the feeling, but you are so right!

    Joe - So far, so good! I'm thinking it was worth it. Thanks for the thoughts my friend.

    Sarah - Thanks Sarah! I just touched the spots on my head, they are still there! Why do we do that? To make sure we are still in pain?

    Ellen - Thanks Ellen! No drugs today, so we'll see!

    Brenda - thanks Brenda! The holes are new, but I have to admit the breeze blowing through my skull is kind of nice.

    MD - Thanks! I am too...

    Rek - Someone needs to invent a new phone "app" for that! I'm on it!

    DOMS - Better every day! Once you get past the skin, there is't much pain involved in the skull. At least that's what somebody told me! Thanks...

    Dawn - I have to admit that I'm on the opposite end of this one. I so badly wish I had a photo to post!

    Georgina - You are so right! My own bed seems so nice. It does have disadvantages though. At about 4 AM, I woke up with a 16 pound cat sitting on chest, staring into my face. Thanks!

    James - I'm with you! I'm pretty darn happy so far. Thanks James!

    Bossy Betty - Thanks Betty! You are so right! For now, I have some garland and a couple of ornaments hanging on them. Things are still just a bit fuzzy, so about that money...

    Budd - Thanks so much! It sure felt nice while I had it. I probably wore out the button.

    Nat - Thanks Nat! Good to be back. The meds were like my friends, but time to bid them farewell (after today! yeah, that's it...)

    diane - Thanks! It's good to be back. I'm thinking by the end of this week I should feel good enough to sit around and do nothing!

    The Insomniac - Thanks so much for stopping by! It's good to see your comment here. Thanks! I'll be over to your place in while looking fo new posts!

    Brian - LOL...You hit that right on the head. Normal for me, probably is scary for some...

    Costas - Thanks Costas! I've had so many injuries over the years that "good as new" probably won't ever happen, but better than last week will be awesome! Thanks my friend...

    faye - Thanks so much faye! I've been feeling those vibes for a week and I'm sure they helped me out!

    Narine - Huzzah! Thanks so much!
    One day at a day...

  22. Yay, I'm so happy it went well and with some success as well. Perfect! Do you think I could borrow some of that pain killer? I have a stinking headache today. I'll trade you for a Diet Pepsi and a yogurt? :) Hope you're fully recovered soon.

  23. California Girl - Thanks! It's hard to imagine me anywhere without a camera, but I didn't have any pockets!

    TVA - Thanks so much! I'll take that trade! I'm happy I don't get headaches and sorry that you do...

  24. Glad to hear you're on the mend and no longer tossing your cookies!!

  25. A healthy Pat is happy news to us all. Continuing to say prayers for your continued - and full - recovery.

    The blogosphere needs your voice. As do we.

  26. I always need my editor (my wife) to look over everything due to possible drug induced errors! Happy/unhappy to admit they get less with my body tolerating the medication that is suppose to keep me out of excruciating pain. I am so happy that things seem to be a success thus far, Happy Christmas! Be well my friend, be well.

  27. It's great to see you back, Pat. I'm glad the surgery was a success, but sorry for all the subsequent pain. I hope it's subsided. I missed you. xo

  28. I saw your comment on my blog and my first thought was 'Pat's back!!' So I rushed over here. Good to hear that everything went good. Though that pain killer sounds nasty.

    I wish you had a picture of the screws in the head. That must be weird knowing you were bolted down.

  29. Alex - Thanks Alex! I pretty darn happy about it also. I must say, it was worth it...

    Carmi - Thanks so much for nice words! I very much appreciate the positive thoughts!

    Jhon - So far, so good! I'm sorry you have to live with the pain full-time. That sucks! Happy holidays to you and your family as well! Thanks again!

    Robyn - The subsequent pain, I assume is my payment for the cure... Thanks Roybn!

    Tim - Thanks so much! You are a great and talented human. I really wish I had a photo also. Maybe I'll get one of the incision! Thanks again Tim!

  30. Welcome back and congrats on surviving the ordeal! I'm so happy that the surgery was successful, although I'm a bit surprised that they didn't just put you on some good ole morphine. Hope you'll be feeling lots better, soon! Hang in there!

  31. Pat, I'm so glad that you are on the road to recovery! Sorry that you even had to have the procedure, but thankful that things have turned out well. As long as you're not seeing pink elephants or spiders crawling, I guess the temporary haze will be ok. Seriously, hope you are fully recovered soon and side-effect, drug-hazzed, and pain free! Love you guys & hope you all have a very Blessed & Wonderful Christmas!!

  32. I'm happy you're okay and well enough to type, anyway! I do wish you had a photo of your head with those screws!

    Keep on recovering, Pat!

  33. Marguerite - Thanks so much! Between morphine and this stuff, I'd say this stuff was more effective. I felt like I was in a coma, only with my eyes open. Thanks!

    Andrea - Hey there! Thanks! I'm well on my way to recovery! I just took my first unassisted shower and even shaved! I hope your holiday season is also great!

    Talli - I'll have to ask my Dr. if they actuall screwed in, or were nore like nails with tension on them. Thanks Talli...

  34. Glad to see that things are looking up for you Pat. When I was in the hospital they gave me a morphine drip with a button. It didn't really do much to help ease the pain though.

  35. Nice to see you on blog again Patrick.
    Take care:)
    Greetings, and a christmashug from Norway:)

  36. Warren - Thanks so much! I've had morphine a few times also. I like it a lot, but compared to dilaudid, it doesn't seem that strong... I think I was wearing my button out. Mine was set for every 10 minutes with a double every hour. It helped a lot, but totally zoned me out!

    Berit - Thanks so much! I'm happy to be back! Happy holidays!

  37. So glad everything went well for you Pat and you can be back posting again. Happy Holidays!

  38. Pat, so glad you're back in the saddle so to speak. I would have given anything to see a "holes in the head" picture. Not being sadistic... just, well, you only get so many chances to get cool pics like that in this liftime. Keep on gettin' better man, we've missed you.

  39. Pat,
    I am so glad everything is behind you and you are recuperating..don't be too concerned about the pain killers getting you hooked when you are in need them now and don't cut them off too must be able to heal without pain.
    You have a ton of blogger friends out there wishing you the best, me included! Hopefully by Christmas you will have less pain and 2011 will be better for you..take care!!

  40. Yippe! I LOVED pushing that button in '05! But I too weaned myself quickly!

    It's sounds like Medical MJ would have helped the nausea. Seriously!!

    And the ring, and holes in your head:

    Dude you were ABDUCTED!!!! Any pain in OTHER parts you are not telling us about! Aliens are freaks for that kinda stuff!

    Glad you are better my friend. Not hearing from you is an eerie silence!

    Welcome Home my Friend!


  41. Pat, I am so proud everything went according to plan and taking the first exit away from the pain meds is something I am also proud to see you planning.

    Welcome Back My Friend you have been missed.

  42. I'm so glad you're on this side of the surgery and are doing so well. Praying the pain will lessen quickly. Hang in there

  43. oy!!! I'm not sure I want a photo of that. Glad your well and back and bloggin!!!! Hope your drug induced dreams are lucid and fun.

  44. Heh Pat, I am glad to hear you are doing better and I am looking forward to more of your photography and writing.

  45. My heart is lifted knowing you are okay and on the road to a pain-free existence..I continue to send you healing energy and i sure did miss you..thank you for taking the time to read my posts:-)

  46. Oh my gosh! So sorry to hear about your troubles. I've just about quit blogging so haven't been here in a while. I'll try to get back more often. Hope you have a speedy recovery.

  47. Checking in and glad to hear that you are recovering!

    All my best,


  48. Hi Pat, YAY AND HALLELUJAH, what a relief that your brain is obviously in excellent shape and you're going to continue to write the great posts! (If your mind had been damaged after surgery and you wrote goofy posts, we were all going to be really polite about it, but now we don't have to be!)

  49. Oh Good Lord Pat! What a major ordeal. I'm so glad everything turned out and hope you are out of pain very soon. I can see why you put this off for a while but when pain starts to interfere with your life, you have no alternative. You are very brave and I send my prayers for a speedy recovery. Soon you will be pain free and on the road for a visit Randsburg and Red Rock Canyon!

  50. Glad it went well and you are back home. Sorry about the pain. Hopefully you'll be feeling like yourself again soon.

  51. Now that you're well enough to be back at the keyboard, and as wry as ever, I can admit to giggling at the vision of you with screws in your head... a la Frankenstein, but on the temples... a photo would have been quite cool. Sort of. Hope the crappy part is behind you. I can relate to wanting to get off the drugs asap... (it's a long story, but not related to any addiction)... bon courage!

  52. Ginny - Thanks so much! I hope your sugery went as well as mine did!

    Chuck - Thanks my friend! I agree! I'd love to have a photo of that to post. I'm supposed to be very careful about lifting things for while, so while overcompensating yesterday, I tweaked my lower back! LOL...

    Joan - I am also very glad! I just can't wait until I can get back to doing what I want. Thanks so much for the nice words! Happy Holidays to you and your family also...

    John - Medical MJ...I can see the hospital provided bong sitting on at my bedside. My room would be the one with the blacklight posters. Parts of my feel like I've been abducted! Thanks buddy!

    Jimmy - Thanks Jimmy! So far, so good! I did love those meds, but sometimes we have to say goodbye to our friends.

    Elaine M - I'm on this side and it looks sunny so far! Thanks for the nice words...

  53. Glad to see you back and on the road to recovery!
    Hey, looking forward to seeing more of your photo's soon!
    Take care.
    Big hugs!

  54. Glad you made it through the surgery (surgeries?? Not sure which it is since all were done @the same time with the same end goal) ok!
    Hopefully you will soon be fully recovered, though personally, from reading your past posts, you started "recovery" long ago. Something tells me this surgery was nothing compared to things you'd already been through in your life.

  55. YAYYYY! I'm so glad everything went super fine...(except for the pain and the nausea--nothing worked at all for the nausea?? that must be awful..)

    This is going to sound freakish, but I'd love to see a live spinal surgery..! I've seen blood vessels surgery, hip, knee, and heart valves, but those seem like nothing compared to what you had! I can't believe they dug holes in your head! I would've loved to see a picture too lol :P I'm getting too weird, so I'm going to shut up now ;)

    I'm just glad you're fine. :)

  56. Holy smokes. Glad you're ok - and I hope the recovery process goes as well as it can.

    (And yes, pictures of the new, more aerodynamic skull would be lovely.)

  57. Jesse - Thanks! It's good to be back. I'm not all the way yet, but soon! The drugs were good, but I'm putting them in the back of the medicine closet for now...

    Morongobill - Hey there! thanks so much. I'll be posting regularly again, I'm happy to say...

    Lynne - Thanks so much my friend! I felt everyone's energy and it helps! you are welcome, your place was one of the first ones I checked!

    dot - thanks dot! Well, I'm happy you took the time to stop by then! Hope you find the time to blog again!

    Pearl - Thanks Pearl! I appreciate it...

    Margaret - You are funny! I think there is always going to be some goofy in them! Thanks so much!

    Stickup Artist - I've been through worse and I've been through better. I tried every treatment plan available until they were all proven ineffective. I really didn't want anyone messing with my spine! Can't wait for Randsburg and Red Rock Canyon! Thanks so much for the nice words...

    KarenG - Thanks Karen! I'm just about back. Went to your new blog today. It looks good!

    Francisca - Oh yeah, maybe an electrode or two attached to them also! thanks for the kind words.

    Karin - Thanks! It's great to be back...

    Alice - thanks Alice! It's really nice to see you out and about! You take care also...

    Misfit Mommy - You are so right! My life has involved a great deal of "recovery." Most of it sitting in a chair, instead of laying in a bed. It's been a long strange trip, but hey, it made for some good stories! Thanks so much for tagging along!

    Sarah - Nothing really seemed to work and throwing up really didn't bother me that much. Next time I'll see I can get you a front row seat. Hey, weird is good...

    Scott - Thanks for stopping by Scott. I appreciate it!

    Brad - thanks! So far, so good! I just now noticed that the spots on my head aren't sore anymore. I wish I had a photo of that thing!

  58. Wow, what a crazy ride!! I'm so glad everything went well, though I hate that the meds aren't working like they should. My sister-in-law took a lot of Dilaudid when she was pregnant, since it kept throwing out her back, and she got addicted pretty quick. She also had to take a lot of the Phenergan to stave off the nausea, so I guess that's just the way that painkiller works on people. I'm still keeping your recovery in my thoughts and prayers, and I hope everything turns out fabulously! =)

  59. Janet - It sure has been, lot's of that going around these days. The dilaudid worked great so I'm not complaining too much about being sick! Thanks for the thoughts and prayers! I'm pretty confident about the results. thanks so much for the nice words...

  60. I am so glad you are back!!! Sorry this comment is know where I've been, though. Never a dull moment!

  61. Wow. Just wow. So glad to hear that it went well. So sorry to hear that you had to go through it. And so glad to be reading you again. Good luck with recovery.

  62. Glad to hear the surgery was successful and you are on the mend.

  63. Marlene - Thanks Marlene. I'm glad to hear that your daughter is safe and okay!

    Glenn - thanks so much! A little better each day! I appreciate the nice words.

    Random thinker - I'm also glad! Thanks so much...

  64. I'm sorry to have missed this post, but I'm so very glad that you're bouncing back quickly.

    Now, you're brand new :-) and in time to enjoy Christmas!

  65. Oh man I didn't even know. Now I read your earlier post, and I'm glad to hear that the pain went away. I hope you recover from the surgery soon. The method they use to make sure your head stays stead is barbaric.

  66. Whoa, they still make Dilaudid? That's in the 'as old as morphine' catagory.

    They all make me sick, hopefully you will reach the day soon when all of a sudden it doesn't seem so bad, seems to occur suddenly, then it's all down hill from there.

    Love and Hugs to you.

  67. I, too, have been away with end of semester things, death in the family, getting ready for my intro at a new gallery tired. Happy to hear everything going well after the surgery. Tennis anyone?

  68. Oilfield Trash - Thanks so much! Also thanks for being here, I appreciate it...The first post I read at your place is pure CLASSIC!

    Icy BC - No problem! Thanks so much! I'm happy as can be!

    Minoccio - Thanks for the nice words! I well on the way to recovery!

    Entre Nous - They do indeed make it and it is awesome (in a pain killing way, of course). I quit taking everything, it was starting to feel too good! Thanks so much Joni...

    pitchertaker - Things are going pretty darn good! Thanks! I jus left your blog...

  69. So glad to hear you are home and recovering well. And a photo of your screwed head would have been awesome! Wink, wink...

  70. SQ - thanks so much! It's good to be back...

    Ree - Thanks! I really wish I had a photo...I'd have posted it for sure.

  71. Pat, wow! phew! and I'm happy to know you are back at it and doing well. Guess you can tell I haven't been blogging too much. ;)

    If I don't see you before Christmas ;)... many blessings to you! It has been wonderful to have made contact even in such a short period this year.

  72. Diana - Thanks Di! I haven't been here too much lately either. LOL!
    Thanks so much! Happy holidays to you and your family!

  73. Glad to hear you're doing well! Good move from Dilaudid to codeine; both are opiates, but Dilaudid is about 100 times as powerful as codeine.

  74. The surgery was a success. You can turn your head and not feel pain? No effect on walking or sitting?

    Great, life changing news.

  75. Johnny Yen - Thanks so much! Yeah, I think the move to codeine was good, the diladid REALLY works well though. I've put the codeine away also.

    Jerry - Yep! I'm happy to say that I am good. The pain is gone and everything is good! I was referred to this guy because has some innovative techniques and good results with them. My insurance approved him and rest is history (I hope!!!) thanks Jerry!

  76. Patrick, You are amazing. If I had my head in a "halo", I wouldn't even think of moving my eyes, never mind my head! So glad you can put that behind you and move on pain free. The wonders of medical science...sometimes it really works.

  77. Rosemary - thanks so much! I am as happy as can be about it! Thanks so much!


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