In case any of you were wondering if it was reasonable for me to expect to be able to come home from my surgery and sleep for fourteen hours, the answer is yes, that is perfectly reasonable, and frankly if my wife didn’t regularly get up at ass o’clock in the morning, it could have been a few hours longer.
I have had my one-day follow-up appointment already and have had my eyes proclaimed “perfect,” by which I assume they mean “perfect for twenty hours after the surgery,” because as of right now my vision is still blurrier than I want, although there’s no real pain or discomfort to speak of. I’ve been cleared for screens and reading, but I’m going to try to stay mostly away from both until later today, at which point I will give y’all a fuller report. For now, I’m going to use the day to rewatch Season One of The Mandalorian, just for the hell of it.
I had what I had been told was an appointment for “measurements” for my LASIK surgery this afternoon, and it turned out to be a full-blown eye appointment in addition to the supplementary measurements, so this is what I looked like when I left the place– fully masked up, glasses fogged to hell, and my special wraparound plastic shades that made it possible to make it back home again. It’s about five hours later now and I’ve only just gotten to the point where I can see well enough to be able to read what I type; that said, I’m not as likely to notice typos as usual so don’t hold them against me, please.
The informed consent paperwork for this surgery is a trip, y’all. I’m only slightly exaggerating when I tell you that it declares that 1) the surgery will not work, 2) that it will also stop being effective in a couple of weeks, 3) that I will lose my vision altogether, and that also 4) I may lose both eyes and 5) it is entirely possible that the laser gun doing my actual surgery will explode during the procedure, immediately after it loses power due to a localized outage and a meteor strikes the building. It is the most comprehensive informed consent form I have ever signed, and I’m a little surprised that I’m still doing this after having every single thing that could possibly go wrong explained so clearly to me. I think I can still sue if the surgeon literally gouges my eyes out with a spoon, but I think forks are in the fine print somewhere.
That said, I got a nice drawstring bag and a t-shirt out of the deal, and the t-shirt is not only made from nice thick fabric but it looks like it’s going to fit comfortably, which is rarely the case from free t-shirts. I am trying to decide if actually wearing it to my surgery is the equivalent of showing up to a concert in a shirt from the band you’re seeing. I think probably it is.
In other news, let’s talk masks. I wasn’t aware that I was looking at a potentially two-hour visit when I walked in; I was expecting maybe half an hour of pushing my face into various devices and then to be done. The good news is I managed to make it through the entire two hours without a panic attack becoming a serious concern– which I would not have wagered was a thing I could do going into the appointment. Now, my glasses are a big part of what triggers the problem, and I didn’t have them on for most of the appointment, so that’s probably part of it.
That mask up there is my “best” mask. I got it for $12 at a medical supply place, and I’m considering heading back for a couple more so I can rotate through them. It’s treated with something antibacterial, supposedly; it looks okay, and it fits better than several others I’ve tried. But it folds in the middle and gets in my mouth when I talk– you can see the crease in the picture– and my beard constantly pushes the bottom of it up, so I’m always tugging it back down. As you can see, it folds up as well.
I’m considering doing some surgery on the thing with a paperclip or piece of wire to see if I can give that center vertical seam some more rigidity and structure so that it pushes out from my mouth more reliably, but it’s probably worth asking: does anyone have any particular kind of mask they want to recommend? I don’t want one of the kinds with a vent on them because they don’t work as well, and something washable is great, too. An N95 would do the job just fine but we are apparently still having a PPE shortage so I don’t want to use those, plus they’re not reusable. Something vaguely in the department of that one in terms of looks would be a good thing, too. I’ll need to wear it at work, so solid black is probably my best choice.
(It is also possible that I may need to give up on the idea of not having a close-cropped beard while we are on Mask Planet. I am not happy about that idea, but it may become necessary.)
Last night was miserable– hacking and coughing and snotting all night, and when I wasn’t keeping myself and my wife up the Great Old One was singing us the song of her people– and when I got up my wife insisted that I go to urgent care before this bullshit moves into my lungs. I don’t have the coronavirus, I swear— and the main reason I’ve been avoiding seeing a doctor is that I don’t want to get the coronavirus and I hear there are sick people in doctors’ offices. But enough is goddamned enough at this point.
Turns out my local urgent care lets you videoconference with a doctor, which is not a thing that I would have thought would be a thing. I took my own vitals and reported my symptoms and the doctor agreed with me that, yes, given the timing and the symptoms it was highly likely to be a really inconvenient case of sinusitis or something similar and agreed to prescribe a Z-pack for me. Super! Here’s my pharmacy information; I’ll go pick my drugs up in an hour or so.
Fast forward ten minutes, and my wife points out that my usual pharmacy is closed on Sundays.
Blah blah blah lots of phone calls and sucking it up and swinging by the actual urgent care facility and it turns out that the only way to get the scrip switched to a pharmacy that is actually open today is to go through the entire online appointment process and pay for a second visit, which, yay for first world and middle-class privilege, because I can afford to do that, and my health savings account will reimburse me anyway so, really, who cares. So I’m waiting again; the first time I was in and out faster than I would have been for an actual doctor, but this time I started off with fifteen people ahead of me to see the doctor and I swear the number just jumped from eight to nine. Which is the wrong direction. But whatever, I don’t have anything else to do right now, and I figure getting started on antibiotics tonight rather than tomorrow is probably worth the $60 and however much longer it takes to wait.
I look forward to being healthy-ish for a day or two before I actually catch the Rona. I know I’m gonna get it, the only question is how long I can avoid it.
(EDIT: Two hours later, and I’d been waiting for a bit when I wrote this, I’m still waiting. Now, granted, I’m not in a room with other sick people. I’m in my office watching Nioh 2 videos. But still. Graaaaah.)
This thing I’m doing on Saturdays lately where I get up and spend the first two or three hours of the day reading is really working for me. I finished an entire book cover-to-cover this morning. I don’t know if you’ve noticed this about me, but I like books.
Also, I finally gave up and went to the doctor last night after work, only to be told that my suspicion that my cold had morphed into a sinus infection was probably correct, but that said sinus infection was almost certainly viral and so there really wasn’t anything to be done other than wait it out and drink something called “throat coat” tea, which strikes me as a weirdly pornographic name for a beverage.
Today, I feel shittier than I have in the last several days. We’re up to two weeks and some change now, I think, and I’m heartily tired of this.
The boy had a Complicated Medical Procedure this morning, beginning at 8:15 in the AM and lasting for just over four hours, where they put me and him in a small room together with only an iPad, my phone, and a novel for company and periodically came in to feed him bits of strawberry and make him take his shirt off.
The good news: apparently my son is no longer allergic to strawberries. The bad news: I feel like the day is completely shot (who knew sitting around for four hours could be so exhausting?) and he’s demanding strawberry-flavored everything right now. I will have to go out and buy ice cream tonight.
(A week from now, he’ll be insisting he hates strawberries and always has, because that’s how he rolls. Nine days from now, he’ll want them again. Last night he insisted out of nowhere that he’s never liked green grapes. Motherfucker we could seed a vineyard with all of the grapes you’ve eaten around here.)
So. Yeah. That’s going on. Lots of cleaning to do before the wife gets home on Saturday morning and I’m out of the house almost all day tomorrow, so I probably ought to get to work.