Hope was not the only thing leaving me. This extended hospitalization was causing the wasting away of my body.
I watched in horror as well toned muscle gradually was consumed by starvation and inactivity. What tissue I had left was flaccid and meager. I was quickly changing into a walking skeleton, even the walking could not be done except in short duration without assistance.
My boney frame had to be supported even in bed. Many pillows positioned just right between me and the surface of the mattress were required to keep pressure sores from forming at all the angular points now developing on my body. Sometimes it would take nurses a half hour or more to get the pillows placed in a manner that did not cause pain.
Pain was my constant companion and all means to control it failed miserably the majority of the time. It had been ongoing from the first surgery.
The only relief I received was from the initial methods used during, and immediately after, the surgeries. Once those spinal taps were removed and medication was no longer delivered straight to my central nervous system, pain racked my body.
Nighttime was always the worst. By the end of the day I literally walked in my bed unable to lay still. Instinctively in perpetual motion, trying to distract myself from the crippling pain that seemed to be devouring me.
My pain so extreme even the most jaded of nurses found it difficult to care for me without choking back tears before they could flee my room. I heard evidence of this in their voices or glimpsed the moisture on their faces. It was very clear I was not the only one frustrated by the torment I was experiencing.
My body seared with fire emanating from the site of my incision and spreading throughout my entire central nervous system.
Like that burning pain was not enough I also felt another kind of pain but this type was much more difficult for me to describe. I had experienced this type before back when I was 18 and nearly died from peritinitous during a 45 day hospitalization.
I always struggled with the words the nurses would use to question when asking me to describe my pain since words like pressure, sharp, dull,etc did not describe the feeling I was still then, and do still now experience. My abdomen felt like someone was trying to rip guts out. How would you explain that in the terms presented on a pain chart?
To be continued......
An Angel in the Nighttime