Thursday, June 26, 2008


I was wrong.

It wouldn't be the first disappointment. Or even the fifth. Getting one's hopes up has become an exercise that enhances neither my enjoyment of the process nor the outcome. My hopes had been so very high.

I am fortunate, in that I have a circle of very patient friends (and mom) whose TMI limits reach another universe, who cook for me (and join me in low residue solidarity), who bring me endless cushions to sit on and prop me up with, pick up the stuff that is too heavy, bend onver in my stead, keep being a positive backup even when I go black cloudy, bitch along side me when misery needs company, humor my rules and regulations, still make me laugh even though it hurts. I hope they don't grow sick of sick me.

poppies © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

After going to the see the Butcher yesterday, I have taken some time to collect my thoughts on all the things presented me now. I went to see him earlier than expected, because, without being overly graphic, I was experiencing a symptom that would indicate something inside, at the site of the surgery, had given way.

crown © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

I had struggled to find a perfect balance of ins and outs to meet the body's fluctuating needs. The never ending attempts to regulate my body's system by way of drugs, fluid intake, and diet make every swallow a calculated prayer. Will this offset this enough, or too much? I need to hold back, but how much do I need to hold back? One extreme or the other. Everything is an adjustment to an adjustment. Running theme really.

bloomers © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

After he examined me and we talked, he said he thinks we have a flap breakdown. While that, to my ears, sounds like I am disintegrating, it is more like a tiny tear, through which, only air can pass. He said he does not yet think all is lost - it should ideally still be able to scar down and heal itself, ideally. He put me back on a topical drug to increase blood flow to help the healing and said he was going to consult with a Dr. M, another colorectal specialist, about my case and ask her if she thinks I should have some ultrasound diagnostic studies, to see if we can locate the tear since she does most of the specialized ultrasound work in Philly. He told me I am his project. There was a colorectal conference a couple weeks ago and he said they were all swapping notes on their approaches to fixing their own patients with this particular problem. No definitive answer. No news to me there. Though apparently there has been some work done using sheets of porcine intestine as a bio-medium. Anyway I have been having some other unspeakable problems to which The Butcher responded that we might have to have a much more radical surgery to correct, should I not bounce back.

I am putting that out of my mind completely as of now, and will not consider it one more time until I absolutely must.

wardrobe whirlwind
wardrobe whirlwind © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

In the meantime, stay on the low residue diet. Continue to rest and only do what you feel comfortable with and I will see you again in five days. I am filling in my partner on your status, as she is on call this weekend, so in case anything happens, she will be ready for you. I'll call you tomorrow once I talk to Dr. M about your case and see what she thinks.

Dr. M seems to think there is a good chance it will scar up on its own and be done. Give it a couple weeks and just let it do its thing. If it does not... do not put another drain in, work with the new smaller hole... but you must wait at least a month so the tissue has time to soften. And then nab it.

This labyrinthine explanation leaves the path of my recovery as vague as it ever was. After now 17 months, give it some more time. Tried and true. So I am sallying forth... meeting each day in bed with wild horizontal zest. Obsessively checking my inbox for the notes from friends, hopes of sales from etsy to tide me over while I am incomeless, IMing at all hours to fill the quiet void occasionally filled by visits from friends, Michael, and my nursekitty Maggs... reading, looking at photos, watching movies, working on projects, losing my mind a little bit at a time. I did spend half an hour the other day walking around the bedroom taking photos, which accompany this entry... the rules of the exercise: {a} do not leave the bedroom {b} do not bend over {c} do not make a mess you cannot clean up yourself. I've been stuffing my face with every starchy carb catastrophe I have always wished to indulge but couldn't bring myself. Who is having mountains of french toast for brunch, bagel chips for a snack and pasta for dinner on top of liters of sugary fruit juice beverages and sodas? In one day! This girl is. Who is watching their body go weak and doughy in the meantime?

kitty in kittybed
kitty in kittybed © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Tonight I drove for the first time in over a week, on my way to the first art fag night in some time. Shanners, Michael, Shua and I feasted on sassy low residue scampi prepared by Michael. It was great to be out of the house finally, but the general morale of the group was low due to our combined personal turmoils... and despite the deeply cushy couch, sitting upright for 3 hours was more than I could bear.

stolen from the north of england
stolen from the north of england © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Two codeines later, for some reason I am still awake, albeit with one eye open. The next time I write I'll attempt to have something more uplifting than this cranky I've been in bed for 9ish days, I'm stiff and bored drivel. Maybe with a few less drugs in the system I'll be like a different woman.

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Anonymous heather johnson said...

Hiya honey!

Ugh, little did I know that my visit with Cole was the beginning of a VERY daunting experience for you. I'm so sorry to hear that you are battling so fiercely to no avail. I had no idea.... was just feeling cranky myself about being stuck at home and looked up your blog again hoping for some motivation through your photos.... not so much! :) Call me for some upbeat drama on a daily basis! I miss you.... our worlds are so very different, but I am repeatedly drawn back to you, my dear beautful, witty, deleicate flower of a friend!
xoxoxox, Heather J.... ya know, roomie :)

9:25 PM, June 29, 2008  
Blogger romanlily said...

I've been quietly rooting for you from down here in Georgia. It's painful to read about this latest bit of sub-optimal news (though the potential of having some pigskin sewed into your guts is kind of nifty). I hope you'll keep taking photos and keep talking about what's happening. I'm sending thoughts for healing your way.

8:37 AM, June 30, 2008  
Blogger helveticaneue said...

hello lovely ladies. thank you both for stopping by to read my rants and sending the hole-be-gone thoughts. If there is one thing I will do it is continue to blog and make whatever I can as time and mobility permit... though the results may be touched by the whorl of drugs. I will keep my fingers crossed that Butch has something good to tell me today, and some antibiotics for the bad news I have to tell him in the meantime.

9:57 AM, June 30, 2008  
Blogger d. vrai said...

The doctor has told you about the honorary rectal doctorate you'll receive after all this is over, yes? It amazes me (yet pleases me in a way) that when doctors tread into new territory they take their patients with them. Making an interested patient almost as up on current treatments as the doctor.

You're in my thoughts and chants to any chubby smooth-bellied deity within an arm's reach.

12:30 PM, July 01, 2008  
Blogger helveticaneue said...

thanks d! I admit that since this malady has struck I have been ever so much more interested in medicine at large. Infectious really....


I should really be asleep... like hours ago. off to the hospital in a few hours!

1:31 AM, July 02, 2008  
Anonymous cj said...

Heya, just wanted to de-lurk and let you know that I'm still thinking of you. Actually, I'm thinking of your ass. Now more than ever. :)

All the best vibes your way, sweety.

9:45 PM, July 02, 2008  

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