First of all I really want to write something POSITIVE!! My surgery experience was amazing.. my PTSD was taken seriously & I was looked after extremely well. The max fax team were incredible!
Due to the ward being very busy, & my anxiety was at level 10, they moved me to a side bed, which I was very appreciative for. The Whole entire team who looked after me were wonderful. Due to being severely Dental phobic, & afraid of anything in my mouth, ie: (gauze) they quickly assisted my concerns & accepted my request to not have anything in my mouth when I wake up & they didn’t use anything that would numb my tongue either which was a HUGE relief,
Instead they placed the gauze inside the holes & stitched them over.
My two impacted wisdom teeth were easy to extract. & biopsies/complete removal were also performed successfully
I have to say that the max fax team have given me faith in the NHS again. I felt so at ease & comfortable. My fears & concerns were treated with respect & dignity, & I’m so grateful to them for taking good care of me. All of them were 🌟s. They even gave me a hug !!! WOW! Their Support & care were invaluable. I’ve NEVER EVER been treated so GOOOD! It brought me to tears (happy ones)
I NEVER thought I’d EVER say this but it was the best surgical experience I’ve ever had, everything ran smoothly.......
I wrote to them expressing my thanks, & to just genuinely say how great I thought they were & that because of them I have faith again!
The nitty gritty bit 👇🏻
I awoke in recovery, the nurse beside me said that I look very sad, & I had been crying. She said I had woken up a few times prior but I didn’t remember. I felt unbelievably upset, & frightened. I was Holding on to her arm I was to scared to be on my own, I felt very sick & she was just going to get me something for my nausea but I wouldn’t let go & I cried out loud. I wasn’t in pain, I was just so scared. I felt as if I had lost something that was very special to me..... (my wisdom lol) I was crying for my mum, who was waiting with my dad & boyfriend back on the ward. I actually felt like a young child !? I know that sounds crazy as I’m 31 years old but I felt child like....
So I was taken back & I couldn’t stop my chin from wobbling, I had NO thoughts which was weird as my PTSD is always no matter what playing a movie of memories Through my mind, back with my parents, the nurses kept checking up on me, they were lovely. I was given some pain relief, & I felt as if for the first time I was understood, I kept asking if it was “normal” for me to feel such unbelievable sadness?? I’ve never felt anything like it.. I’ve recently had a GA & yes I felt sad but it was only for a moment, I don’t understand why I feel like this when the surgery went smoothly, I was cared for phenomenally, & I was in the greatest of hands.
I had an intense feeling of disparity, pure fear, & when I got home I couldn’t be left alone, my partner had to stay by my side. The dark scared me, being alone made me weary prior to my operation I loved the dark I loved being alone, I hated how I felt.
I didn’t have pain for 2 days, then it hit me & it took another 3 days to feel a little more human.
On the 6th day post op, my son was getting ready to go to stay with his dad for a few days. My partner was on his way back from work, I knew after I said bye to my son I’d be alone, but I didn’t exactly expect what was about to happen...
I gave him the biggest cuddle ever, for some unknown reason I felt like my heart was breaking, I shut the door & turned to walk up the stairs & I felt strange, it was oddly silent & I felt afraid. Wobbly legs, clammy hands, anxiety was through the roof, it was just me.... I didn’t like it. Finally I made it up the flight of stairs, I looked around knowing I was safe & I had no need to worry, I knew I had to make dinner for my partner as he’d been working a long 15 hour shift, calling me on the hour every hour.
I started boiling the pasta, heating the sauce, , I felt detached from myself?! it’s like I was fighting with an invisible force... I went into our living room it was dark. I normally light our big Yankee candles, smelling them usually makes me feel calm, I lit one & quickly ran out to the kitchen.
I heard a really loud bang.. i fell to the floor heart pounding, then the smoke alarms went off, the flat was filled with smoke, I was choking, unable to see through the rooms, I went into the front room to see that my vase with faux flowers had fallen onto the candle & it was all up in flames, I was in SHOCK! Fight or flight.... I picked up the blazing vase took it to the bathroom put it in the bath & put the shower water on it. Still on fire in the tub I went back in to find the embers had set the two plastic tables on fire & was burning a hole into the wooden flooring, I didn’t realise whilst all this was going on my trouser leg was on fire & so was my sleeve. To cut a long story short, i was at my worst, & for that to of happened whilst I was alone just added to my fear of being on my own, it made everything feel impossible.
My partner came home, I was uncontrollable, shaking, etc. He cleaned up whilst I finished dinner. Thankfully it didn’t burn !
It was such a traumatic experience that I couldn’t sleep that evening & I kept checking that nothing in the flat could cause a fire if it was left on... I was very paranoid...
I went to see my dentist for a checkup to see how I was doing, I told her the first few days were easy, my main concerns were dry Socket. The only pain I was struggling with was jaw stiffness, The biopsy sites were making it hard to swallow which enhanced my fear of chocking, I was scared to eat anything & lost half a stone within a week. Thankfully her reassurance was golden. She said..... DRUM ROLL PLEASE... I’m HEALING well!! The relief was unbelievable!
I explained about my sadness in recovery & when I got home, I told her about the fire accident & that I couldn’t bare to be alone. I felt venerable & weary... crying all the time, terrible nightmares. Up all night & sleeping all day. I felt like a child, but in a adults body, detached, & disassociation plagued me, I hadn’t felt this bad for years. I first felt like i do now at 16 where I endured horrific trauma. But my surgery went well so....... why was/ or am I so scared of...
& she said
“I’m so used to things going WRONG with my health/ operations & procedures especially , that when something REALLY GOOD happens & things go RIGHT I don’t know how to react to it.”
The whole experience was overwhelming, & she said I’m traumatised by it even though it went perfectly. So she expressed that I had post surgical depression. I’m slowly getting better..anxiety to me is like a ghost, you can’t always feel it but you know it’s there... it takes something really bad to make me feel this way. In theatre, I said to the team please take good care of me, I kept hearing of course Laura, we promise, hand on heart. I was that scared I kept fighting the anaesthetic but in the end I just let go... maybe it was because I was so scared beforehand... it wasn’t the operation that worried me it was how I would feel after.... boggled,
Early hours of this morning my neighbours flat (below me) was burgled. His car too.
I caught the thieves on my CCTV, & I watched them try my front door a few times which petrified me, even though I knew it was locked they still could of got get in! My partner phoned the police & I was sat up like a kid again, holding the duvet up to my nose, shaking.... what’s happening to me !!!!! I’m making progress but things like this makes me take 5 steps back... hmmm.
It’s been a good & bad few weeks. But I’m proud of myself that I went ahead with my surgery & didn’t let my anxiety win.
I’ll have to wait for 5 weeks for my results, & a few more weeks for the area in my throat to heal. I’m having my stitches out on Tuesday.
I’m ever so happy that for once something went well for me. I now understand what it feels like to be treated so well too. I’m awaiting some help with my post op depression & PTSD.
I wasn’t aware that you can become depressed after any minor/major operation. I didn’t know that GA would ever make <me> feel this way. But what I do know is, that it was traumatic for my mind, & body but time is a healer. I have faith.