Sunday, 2 December 2012
I've been lucky enough to have avoided hospitals for most of my 45 years, apart from visiting other people who haven't been so lucky. In fact, I've only been in hospital twice before - once to have a birthmark removed when I was four, and once because I'd swallowed some poisonous seeds when I was about eight or so. ( More grey hairs for my parents... )
So, it came as a bit of a culture shock when I was admitted into Gloucester Royal Hospital last Thursday. I'd noticed a couple of months ago that there was something at the back of my mouth, near the tonsils, that shouldn't be there. I thought that maybe I was growing a new eye in there like those geriatric aliens in the Doctor Who episode, Amy's Choice. But it wasn't anything so interesting. To tell the truth it was quite worrying. I had an appointment with an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist who used words like "polyp", "lesion" and "papilloma" and booked me in for surgery.
Time ticked away slowly, as it always does when you're worried about something. Luckily, the pressures of work and a few gigs and trips away kept me distracted from thinking about it too much. Sarah was, if anything, more stressed out about it than I was.
The day finally arrived and Sarah drove me to Gloucester Royal for 07:30am and we waited... and waited...
After hours of boredom I was finally wheeled down to Theatre ( in one of those flattering gowns with the arse hanging out ) and went in at 15:10pm or so. I have to admit I wasn't as scared as I'd expected to be ( I'm notoriously bad with needles and suchlike ) and found it all very interesting. I had a chat with a very cute nurse ( there's an upside to everything... ) while the anaesthetist did her thing... and, the next thing I knew, I was coming round in the recovery room. Job done. I've always heard about how quickly you go under when you have a general anaesthetic but I was amazed at just how sudden it was. It was definitely a relief to have this horrible growth removed at last and well worth the discomfort. After a few more hours of boredom I was finally discharged and Sarah got me home for about 21:30pm. What a looooong day!
I've got nothing but praise for the staff at GRH. You hear so many horror stories about the NHS but everybody who dealt with me on Thursday from the receptionist up to the surgeon was kind, friendly and helpful. And, of course, my lovely wife was amazing - I couldn't have done it without her.
I've now been signed off work for a week so, hopefully, with all this spare time I'll be able to catch up with some blogging. Like I said, there's an upside to everything :-)