I am a Bad Patient

And I know I am a bad patient because my husband told me so. And the reason he knows is because he is the one who gets yelled at by the doctor after every procedure I have ever had done. It is so convenient that I am always still under the effects of anesthesia when this happens.

So the latest experience was when I had to have cataracts removed from both eyes and special toric lenses inserted so I no longer need glasses. I wasn’t thrilled with this – in fact, I was rather pissed because I feel like I am way too young to have cataracts. (By the looks of the waiting room, I am correct in this assumption). My doctor told me he is seeing more and more younger people needing cataract surgery due to working in front of a computer all day. That may be so, but I am not on Medicare; therefore, I should not need this stupid surgery. The fact that my husband would no longer ride with me when I drove at night was not related.

When I started the pre-appointments, I immediately told the doctor that I had a super big issue with anyone messing with my eyes.  I mean, I can mess with my eyes but no one else can. To which he responded, “Yes, you and 70% of everyone.  Don’t worry, you will be sedated and won’t even remember.”  (Words he would come to regret).

After a million tests and signed papers and money, my surgery day finally came.  Anxious was not the word for it. My anxiety was at an all time high. It is a bit like cattle herding.  Go here, get the pretty blue bonnet and booties.  Go here and get eye drops.  Go here get labeled.  Get more eye drops. Go sit in the big chair and get more eye drops and an IV.  By the time I was On Deck I was totally freaking out.  When Jim, the anesthesiologist, came to speak to me I clearly conveyed my concerns to him. I was again reassured that “it’s nothing and will be over in 10 minutes- 15 minutes tops.”

Then I get rolled into the room.  Just imagine my sense of being as I am transitioned under the laser and a nurse saying, “I just need to make these four marks directly on your eye with this marker.  Don’t worry, you won’t feel it.”

Well, worry I did.  And I said so.  And then they did something else and I remember clearly stating, “I CAN FEEL THAT!” and I don’t remember anything much after that but according to my husband, the doctor said I would not shut up.  He said the doctor was so pissed at me that he didn’t even introduce himself but just started right in about how  horrible I was.  That I complained of pain when there clearly was not any and that they had to give me THE HIGHEST dosage of sedation medication just to finish the procedure. He completed this conversation by saying that maybe we should consider going to the hospital and being totally sedated for the other eye.

My husband was not happy with me on the way home.  So I took these really  cool selfies of my left eye being hugely dilated and messaged them to everyone telling them I took drugs and they only half worked.

A week later I am scheduled for the right eye.  This time going in I was smarter and took a Valium.  And had another one in my pocket just in case. So I was pretty happy and relaxed this time. Plus I knew what to expect.  I was the very first patient (obviously scheduled that way to get me the hell in and out).  As the marker came and the laser positioned, I heard the doctor remark about how much better I was.  Then I heard Jim reply, “She took a Valium.” This time my husband said my doctor was very happy with me.

I was supposed to wear sunglasses on the way home and my husband forgot my purse was in the trunk.  Taking advantage of an opportunity to be irritating and not get in trouble, I proceeded to put the car throw over my head and then make various bomb noises and blow up myself underneath all the way home.  Well, except for the time my husband got out to buy alcohol.

So I had successful surgery on both eyes with very positive results. I still find myself going into the bathroom at night to remove my contacts and then realizing I don’t need them anymore. I am just not ready to throw them out yet. After almost 45 years it is a very hard habit to break. I am thinking about taking all my contact lens stuff and glasses and having a little impromptu memorial ceremony by the garbage can.  I can pretend to blow them up.


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