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Sensible: Another Word for Old

I hates it, I hates it I do.

Grumble, grump, stampfoot, and All That Jazz...

The background: I have a bum gallbladder. Same-day, laparoscopic surgery to have it removed is scheduled for Monday, June 1st. elaine_brennan has been keeping me company through all of the medical appointments and tests of the last 11 days. It's been reassuring to have her readily at hand should the need for a quick trip to the emergency room arise. Fortunately, a low-fat diet seems to be doing the trick in terms of avoiding additional attacks.

After surgery, I'll be convalescing at debgeisler and benveniste's.

It's good, so good, to have friends.

I'm not thrilled about the gallbladder problems, but that's not what I'm grumbling about. Not directly, anyway.

The surgeon gave his okay for my trip to ConQuesT this weekend. There are no guarantees I'd be able to stay out of the ER, he reminded me, but if I felt like going, sure, go.

I left his office feeling like I was living the charmed life. Everything is on track for the surgery, and it wasn't going to mess with my trip to Kansas City. Yes, having to be super careful and only have a small taste of Jack Stack's Lamb BBQ and Sheridan's Frozen Custard would be a hardship, but it would be a manageable one. Seeing everyone and enjoying the convention would be well worth it. Having a bunch of fun between the health problems that led to the diagnosis and the surgery to fix it seemed like just the thing. Escapism R Us.

My euphoria lasted through the rest of last Thursday, all day Friday, and even into Saturday morning.

By Saturday afternoon, I was distinctly dragging. Energy, what energy? A restorative bath turned into an immediate need to lay down when I discovered just how wobbly I was on my feet at the end of it. Elaine brought me an English muffin with some whole fruit topping. (1 gram fat total) I hoped it was just a food problem after so many days of a sparse diet. Maybe it was, some, but I had protein later that night and was still utterly wiped all day Sunday. Likewise Monday, even though I was eating reasonably well. malibrarian warned me to expect to feel like this much of the time between now and the time of surgery before I mentioned having any problems with energy levels and the like. Oh, joy. Not.

I gave myself one more day to be sure, waiting until after today's pre-surgery physical to take action on what I knew what the right decision.

lesliet_ma invited Elaine and I to the Garden in the Woods today and we enjoyed our midday stroll through the seasonal blooms. It felt positively decadent to have our own, personal tour guide. Thanks, Leslie!

My energy was reasonable through that and the picnic lunch we shared after our relaxed, mile-long walk. It was even fine through the physical, but it was hard to resist the lure of a nap when Elaine and I returned to Toad Woods. And now, I just want to sleep.

Last week, I figured I'd give myself until the moment I boarded the plane to decide not to go. After the last 3-4 days, I realized that the decision had flipped. Much as I want to go, it's simply not sensible to do so. At this point, there really isn't anything that can change that would make it sensible. Better to cancel now and give npulsifer as much time as possible to find a replacement moderator for the blogs and fanzines panel that looks like such fun. Yes, I want to go to ConQuesT, but I want to go under conditions that simply aren't going to exist for me this year. Flying to Kansas City only to spend the weekend sleeping as much as humanly possible or completely wearing myself out trying to do even the basics would be nothing more than an exercise in frustration and annoyance with myself.

That's the best I could expect. Ending up in the ER and having the surgery in Kansas City or in Detroit would be worse. Catching a cold or flu bug that caused my surgery here to be delayed would be highly likely to screw up both my business and the rest of my summer. Given how run down I am, four flights and a weekend at a convention sounds like a sure recipe for that.

So, yes, I'm being sensible. Sensible is not fun. Sensible feels old. I've never been good at admitting or believing I'm human, that I can't do everything I want to do. Heck, if I had my way, I'd be at ConQuesT and at Plokta.con and at WisCon this weekend. And I'd not need the surgery, either.

As you can no doubt tell from all the whinging, I'm living in my cranky pants right now. I know I'm making a good decision, one that reflects and respects the reality that is my life at the current time. Usually when I do that, a reasonable measure of satisfaction accompanies the choice. Not this time. This time I'm just plain annoyed, dammit.

Onward.

Comments

( 39 comments — Leave a comment )
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redbird
May. 20th, 2009 02:57 am (UTC)
A year ago this week, I was reluctantly not at Wiscon, because of my gall bladder. It wasn't fun missing the con, but I knew I would go back. So will you.

signed, Sensible in New York
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:25 am (UTC)
Thank you. Just a few days ago, I re-read your LJ posts from the end of April through May last year to refresh my memory on what your recovery was like. That was useful, as was malibrarian's account of her recovery after her surgery in December.

Yes, I've only been to one ConQuesT so far, but I know I'll be there next year and that's helping temper my disappointment at missing ConQuesT 40.

(I'm still grumpy. I wanted to be at both!
dragonet2
May. 20th, 2009 03:08 am (UTC)
If you were at all three places, you would
be a super-girl.

But you aren't. We will miss you. But there will be much fun next year.

It's okay you're in your cranky pants. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you because another friend had less-than-stellar issues with gall-bladder removal. Oddly enough it was almost the same time last year.

Get well as soon as is healthfully possible, heal and be healthy.

(And I'm in my cranky pants because this year is the most work I've done for ConQ in a long time... Next year I won't be doing this, Jeff and Eric O will be. yaay.)
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:22 am (UTC)
Re: If you were at all three places, you would
Yes, I'm looking forward to next year! And I'm petty enough right now that I'm glad my gallbladder won't be around for it. That'll show that pesky organ for messing up my plans to see you all now as well as then.

Have a splendid ConQuesT 40! Thank you for all of the work you ended up doing for the convention this year.
ann_totusek
May. 20th, 2009 03:23 am (UTC)
Might you be willing to sell me your membership to ConQuest? You can't get here, and I'm stuck here, so it seems like it might work out better than other scenarios for both of us...
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:10 am (UTC)
Sure. I just sent email with details.
don_fitch
May. 20th, 2009 03:34 am (UTC)
Yup, "sensible" can feel like "old". You might try thinking of it as "mature" (which sounds better than "grown-up" -- something many of us avoid like the plague). Actually being old, however, permits a lot of self-indulgence, and I'm kinda looking forward to it ... in about ten years, maybe.
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:18 am (UTC)
You rarely remind me of my father, but this time you nailed it. In September of '98, Daddy said, "When I get old, I still want to feel good." He was 75 at the time. I loved hearing him say that then, and I love hearing you say it now.

Where do the years go? I know how they go -- quickly! quickly! But where?

FWIW, you'd love the Garden in the Woods. You'd utterly love it. And I'd love going there with you.

coffeeem
May. 20th, 2009 04:04 am (UTC)
Waugh! I'm so sorry, hon. {{{{{{{{{{you}}}}}}}}}}
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:26 am (UTC)
Thanks, dear. Much appreciated.
maruad
May. 20th, 2009 04:08 am (UTC)
Sorry to hear it Geri.
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:27 am (UTC)
Thanks. And you, just having been at KeyCon. Tell me about Brough and Simmonds! I miss them so damned much!

(Likewise you.)
(no subject) - maruad - May. 22nd, 2009 01:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
drpaisley
May. 20th, 2009 04:37 am (UTC)
Taking care of yourself is the most important thing. We will all be happier to see you healthy and your usual wonderful, energetic self.
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:29 am (UTC)
Great icon. It's been so long since I was hospitalized that I was shocked when they asked my religious affiliation during a pre-admission phone call. I suppose someone going in to have her gallbladder removed really ought not say, "I'm a baconologist."
(no subject) - drpaisley - May. 20th, 2009 05:38 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - huladavid - May. 20th, 2009 12:04 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - maruad - May. 22nd, 2009 02:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
kalimac
May. 20th, 2009 04:39 am (UTC)
Deciding not to go when you realize your body really isn't up to it: that's maturity.

Difficult as it may be to hear, that's a good thing.

Sympathies. I'm basically holed up for the next two weeks; no cons for me either. But I don't have your event in front of me. May you be successfully deGalled.
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:30 am (UTC)
"deGalled" -- Oh, the VMI!

I can't decide which would be worse, the man or the airport.
kaffyr
May. 20th, 2009 05:08 am (UTC)
I'm sorry you have to be sensible, but I can't fault your good sense. You have every right to be cranky, though; being sensible often means one runs right up against the reality that sensible can be an antonym for fun.

Many hugs in advance of your surgery. One-day or not, my thoughts are with you!
gerisullivan
May. 20th, 2009 05:40 am (UTC)
Thanks. Usually I can find the silver lining in such things. I'm not there yet.

I do have a fun little coping mechanism in place if I come to after surgery and discover that I turned out to be one of the rare cases that they have to do the old way. The hospital has an once-a-day email delivery service for incoming emails to patients. If I end up having to stay there more than a single overnight, Elaine will let loose with the information of how to use the service and I'll take my satisfaction in letting them deliver a virtual mail bag full.

Like I said, it's good, so good, to have friends.

Love you. Always.
Silver Lining? - ceemage - May. 20th, 2009 06:26 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Silver Lining? - gerisullivan - May. 20th, 2009 06:28 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - huladavid - May. 20th, 2009 12:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
minnehaha
May. 20th, 2009 10:49 am (UTC)
Going when you don't feel well is foolish, and there's nothing wrong with having the awareness that you need to expend less energy right now.

Honestly, I thought you were going to report that you were whining about deciding not to go because it didn't seem like a good idea to be so far from home. Anyone would have to respect that decision, and it's not the same as feeling actually unwell.

I haven't any idea if I feel low energy when my gall bladder is bothering me. I might, but I might not: I'll have to pay more attention. The only time I noticed such a thing for myself was when I skipped the BiL concert for feeling too dragged out to go (when I came home from Africa with "malaise" in March).

You're clearly better-read on gall bladder issues than I am, so if you're responding to a symptom, go with it.

K.
(Deleted comment)
huladavid
May. 20th, 2009 12:00 pm (UTC)
I forgot to tell you something relating to my gallbladder fun from last year. In order to do the surgery the docs gotta inflate you with CO2. They didn't tell me that part, which isn't any big deal, but would have been nice to have know, since that's what all the gas passing (or, as I perfer to put it, deflating) was all about.

You might want to check with your doctor about that, just to make sure.

Also, if no one's mentioned it, make sure you know what shape you liver's in. Mine was badly inflamed, which is one reason why I was sore for a week or so, while it recovered.

(Socks on?)
threeringedmoon
May. 20th, 2009 12:12 pm (UTC)
Here's to being sensible, even when it sucks.
(Deleted comment)
jcbemis
May. 20th, 2009 01:16 pm (UTC)
sensible is hardly ever fun. I hope you improve quickly post-surgery, and I'll be thinking about you at OASIS (probably esp during the RENO party we're hosting)
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