As surgeries go, this most recent thoracotomy has been by far the least difficult of my six resections. Which is an entirely relative statement. Given my extreme aversion to opiates, my only pain control is a combination of Tylenol and ibuprofen. I twice refused opiates as a takehome medication, to the amazement of my NIH medical team, but I’m utterly serious about staying off opiates wherever possible.
And yes, it hurts like crazy.
Of particular annoyance is the fact that I’m mostly a right side sleeper. The resection of my left lung in the fall of 2009 left me with a permanent, painful knot on that side of my body. I’ve not been able to sleep comfortably on my left side since then. I’ve never been a back sleeper, except when very ill or heavily medicated. My right side is now impossible to sleep on due to the healing surgical wounds.
The astute reader will note this leaves me with a paucity of comfortable, or indeed, even uncomfortable-but-viable, sleeping positions.
Not sleeping is not so good for the healing process of surgical recovery, nor of health in general. Of such small challenges is life made.
Today we have to deal with a minor mechanical problem in the rental car, and possibly go shop at Target. I need to catch up on a week’s worth of mail and email, mostly of the paying-the-bills variety. Mom flew into town yesterday and is visiting friends, but Lisa Costello and I are having dinner with her and Dad tonight.
Life goes on. Just painful and exhausting.