|Hospital Day One: Breakfast in Styrofoam|
It felt a bit like vacation - getting up before dawn, packing the car and hitting the highway. That is, until we got to our destination. We arrived promptly at 5:45 and registered at Admissions. This took all of five minutes. "The nurse will come to get you at 6:30," they said. So, we waited for 40 minutes in the hospital lobby. By 7:15, we were chatting with the surgeon, an affable fellow with clean fingernails and perfectly coiffed hair. Good signs, we thought. At 7:20, we were informed that the very special instruments for the procedure (not kept in-house) had not been sterilized and delivered. Our 7:30 surgery would be delayed. One hour, tops. Keep in mind, the patient has a deteriorated hip. Sitting anywhere is painful, especially on a gurney. "Omigod, we were so close," we said. Uncomfortably, we waited until 8:45 when, finally, the nurse came to inject sedative into the patient's I.V. We kissed - twice - and they wheeled him away to the O.R. Now, I wait again, trying not to think of what they're doing to him in there, my anxiety eased only by knowing he's not in pain...at the moment.