A decision on replacing the left side of my ass
Today is the day. It’s 4:30 AM, and my wife Claudia and I are waiting for the driver to show to give us a ride to the hospital for registration and then the operation. Okay, I admit to being a little nervous. But it is about more than the surgery.
First, my wife has to be there for check-in and to make any decisions during and after surgery should the need arise. She also needs a ride home and back the next day for my discharge. She would like to handle this alone, but her MS prevents it. That’s why my anxiety is more than it might normally be. However, there is an upside to this because the need to focus on getting my wife to the hospital takes some of my attention away from “going under the knife.”
Tick, tick, tick – it’s 4:45 AM, and the driver is no-where to be seen. Tick, tick, tick – 5:00 AM comes and goes and still no driver. I call the health care service and am told, “She is on her way.”
The next two minutes were filled with a one-way confrontation during which I explained that “on her way” is well beyond the time she was supposed to have arrived as agreed. Now it is too late to get me registered at the hospital to be first in line, and just possibly I would lose my chance to have surgery that day. It quickly became clear that the person on the other end of the phone saw herself as the victim in the exchange. Here she is, up before the crack of dawn with no extra compensation for having to deal with clients who don’t appreciate that her efforts to coordinate transportation have been above and beyond the call of duty.
Before the last grain of sanity passes from my head, I ask for the number of the driver.
“Hello, is this Mary?”
“Yes, this is Mary. You must be Mr. Holland. I’m glad you called. I have already talked with the office to let them know that I’m on my way. I should be there in about 20 minutes,” she said in a in a light-hearted voice that belied any awareness of actually being late.
“Mary, can you get from where you are to the hospital? If you can, let’s meet there, rather than having you come to my house. It just might be that this whole thing can be salvaged.”
Mary responded cheerfully, “It’s a plan!”
I ended the call, rushed to get Claudia in the car and headed to the hospital. Just before entering he highway, Claudia said to me quietly, “You handled that well.”
I only wish there had been nothing for me to handle. I already thought everything had been well planned so I could have the least amount of anxiety on the morning of my surgery.
The rest of the morning was uneventful, save for actually having the left side of my ass removed.
Day Seven would come soon enough!
Be sure to catch my previous daily blog posts about this journey!