You can read about days 1-5 here.
Post-Op Day 6:
- Weight: 132.0 (I’m not eating much at all, but I think the steroids are making me retain weight. I also think my body is hoarding the calories that I do consume).
- Pain level (scale of 1-10)/medicine: I woke up with pain around a level 3-4. I decided (for multiple reasons) to skip taking the hydrocodone yesterday afternoon, so I have only had Ibuprofen throughout the night and so far today. I felt like the pain medicine was likely what was keeping my mind racing at night, and it has also not been gentle on my empty stomach. It still causes intense itching, so I really feel like I can get by with just the OTC meds for today. Still taking steroid.
- What I ate/drank: More of the same! Water, chocolate milk, Italian ice, creamy chicken soup, Italian ice, Gatorade, chocolate milkshake from Chick-Fil-A. I tried a few bites of mashed potatoes that were thinned out with lots of milk, but that still didn’t work. I had a fair amount of pain at the roof of my mouth and back of my throat after that.
- Activity level: I finally went outside for the first time in almost a week. Aaron and I sat on the back porch for about 15-20 minutes. Even though it was quite warm outside, it felt good to be out of the bed. I tried to ride to Chick-Fil-A for a milkshake, but we made it a few houses down the street and had to turn around because I felt motion sick.
- Sleep: Still terrible. This has been one of the hardest parts that I just didn’t expect. I took a screenshot on my phone most times that I woke up last night. As you can see, I’m up at least once every hour.
- Other thoughts: I had a bit of a breakdown this morning and started to cry for the first time since surgery. I feel stuck in a weird limbo where I’m far enough past the surgery that I expected to be experience more healing by now, but nothing is really happening. The disgusting scabs are still in the back of my throat and I feel nauseous every time I think about them. I told Aaron today that I wish they would just fall off already because I’d much rather deal with the pain of a raw throat vs. the awfulness of the scabs. In happier news, a coworker had a lovely bouquet of flowers delivered to me and it really brightened my day.
Post-Op Day 7:
- Weight: 131.2
- Pain level (scale of 1-10)/medicine: I skipped my middle of the night dose of hydrocodone and woke up around 5 AM with pain around a level 3 when I swallow. I took hydrocodone at 5 AM and 1 PM and have had little to no pain today. However, I have been excessively nauseous today. I had to lay completely still for hours to prevent throwing up. Multiple doses of Zofran saved me today. Thank goodness that today is my last day on the steroid too. That has been my least favorite medicine! I’m going to stop the hydrocodone for as long as I can and just try alternating ibuprofen and Tylenol. Hopefully it will be easier on my body.
- What I ate/drank: Jello, milkshake, soup, tea, water. I tried a “Naked” green juice but it didn’t go down well. Only managed a few sips.
- Activity level: Aaron, Ally, and I went for a walk around the block early this morning. It felt SO GOOD to be outside and active. I felt good when we returned and was able to take a nice long shower. Things rapidly went downhill after that though and the rest of the day was spent fighting severe nausea (and praying….lots of praying). It was by far the worst day that I’ve had.
- Sleep: Sleep?! What is sleep?! Fell asleep around 2:30 AM. Woke up once during the 3 AM hour, again at 4:30 AM and was up for the day at 5:15 AM.
- Other thoughts: This process is really wearing on me physically and emotionally. I’m so ready to turn the corner and start feeling better. I know the benefits of the surgery will be worth it, but after a day like today, it’s hard to see that far ahead.
Post-Op Day 8:
- Weight: 130.2
- Pain level (scale of 1-10)/medicine: My last dose of hydrocodone was yesterday around 1 PM. (Voluntary decision). I woke up today feeling like an actual human being. I am so glad to have that horrible medicine out of my system. I took ibuprofen at 10 PM last night and made it through most of the day today with no medicine at all. My pain has been minimal – maybe a level 1 or 2 – except when I eat it’s closer to a 4. I started coughing pretty badly this afternoon so I took Tylenol at 4 PM to help control the discomfort associated with that.
- What I ate/drank: A small amount of Jello, chocolate milk, soup, gatorade, milkshake, water. I walk through our kitchen and dream of eating real food. Even plain white bread looks so appetizing! I may work up the courage to try mashed potatoes again in a day or two, but I’m not there yet.
- Activity level: Better today. Aaron is working an event, so I’ve been solo most of the day. I’ve been able to get my own food and drink, sit on the back patio for a bit, and shower. I want to do more, but I’m trying not to push myself beyond my limits. My energy level is still very low.
- Sleep: I was still up most every hour last night, but my sleep was better than it has been. I was able to take a nap for about an hour this afternoon.
- Other thoughts: Even though today has been a better day, I am still SO ready to be back to normal. I feel like I’m constantly being gagged by little pieces in the back of my throat (I guess that’s the scabs?) I’m usually very active so t’s been very hard for me to be still for over a week. I’m also ready to be able to talk again!
Post-Op Day 9:
- Weight: 130.2
- Pain level (scale of 1-10)/medicine: I’ve had discomfort today, but not severe pain. The most discomfort occurs after I drink anything. I wasn’t feeling great before bed last night, so I took Tylenol and Zofran before going to sleep. This morning, I took Ibuprofen around 9:30 AM and Tylenol in the afternoon. Pain level around 1-2.
- What I ate/drank: I ATE REAL FOOD TODAY! When I woke up this morning, I drank chocolate milk. I tried some juice but I just didn’t care for it. As the day went on, I felt so low in energy that I decided that I needed to try to eat. I tried applesauce and was able to get it down without issue. Then I got brave an made mashed potatoes (really runny) and was able to eat those too! I feel so encouraged to even eat something as simple as mashed potatoes. I got super brave for dinner and was able to eat macaroni and cheese! Washed it all down with a milkshake.
- Activity level: Better today. I started out not feeling too great, but as the day went on I have felt better. Today is the first day that I’ve spent mainly on the couch and not in the bed. I was able to go outside for a bit, take a shower, make my own food/drinks, etc…I watched church online and watched a baseball game sitting up. I haven’t been able to sit up for this long since the surgery. I even folded a load of towels! Perhaps I’m getting back to my old self…
- Sleep: Decent. I went to sleep sometime around 12:30 AM and woke up around 6 AM. Sometimes I wake up for a minute and take sips of water, but I’ve not had any issues with my throat drying out at night even when I sleep a few hours at a time. I didn’t feel good when I woke up, so I just stayed in the bed after I drank some chocolate milk and finally fell back asleep around 7:30 AM and slept until around 9:30 AM. That’s the first time I’ve slept that late! I also fell asleep for a short nap during the afternoon.
- Other thoughts: My throat definitely feels more sore today than it has previously. I still can’t bring myself to look at it, but Aaron tells me that the protective scabs are about 40% gone, so I am starting to feel the “rawness” of my throat. I’m hoping that I don’t have any more truly “bad” days ahead of me, but I can anticipate an increase in my pain level when these scabs are finally gone. When I scheduled the surgery, it was hard to comprehend needing a full two week recovery period, but I believe it is absolutely going to take the full two weeks or longer. I can’t imagine having to go back to work yet, so I’m thankful I’m going to be able to have the next full week off as well.
Post-Op Day 10:
- Weight: 129.8
- Pain level (scale of 1-10)/medicine: Minimal pain. Level 1-2. Having a sore throat has been par for the course for me for the last couple of years at least, so the discomfort is fairly normal and not terribly bothersome. What is more bothersome is the feeling of “stuff” in my throat. I haven’t been gagging, but it’s just a nuisance. I took Tylenol at 8 AM and Ibuprofen at 2 PM.
- What I ate/drank: Chocolate milk, pudding, tea, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes. I’m literally thrilled that I am able to eat a little bit of food!
- Activity level: So much better today! I’ve been up all morning doing a few things around the house. I loaded the dishwasher, folded some laundry, and tidied up. Those are really big “victories” for me considering I could barely sit up last week. Our dog injured her leg a few days ago, so I’ve been able to help her move around and get in and out of the house several times when needed. There is no way I could have done that last week!
- Sleep: Getting better, but last night was strange. I started coughing pretty badly yesterday, so I had trouble falling asleep due to the cough. I went to sleep around midnight, but around 3 AM I woke up completely drenched in sweat. That has never happened! I was coughing again and had a bad taste in my mouth. I went in the bathroom and spit out a mouthful of blood. I knew that was to be expected in the healing process, but it was still a bit scary. Aaron got some ice water for me to gargle, and the bleeding stopped fairly quickly. I was up for about an hour after that, but then slept until 6 AM.
- Other thoughts: My ears feel strange lately, almost like they’ve got cotton in them. It’s painful to talk, so I’ve been quite silent for the most part. I just gesture or either text Aaron when I need to say something.
My final update (days 11-14) is here!