Monday, April 23, 2012


I had my final pre-op appointment at my doctor's office today - all that's left is for me to do my labwork and then surgery.  But this appointment has me feeling kind of...  apprehensive?  Hesitant?  I'm not entirely certain, I just know that I left feeling pretty down.

I wasn't impressed by my doctor's office today.  I haven't been impressed by them the last couple of times that I've gone in.  A couple of weeks ago, the waiting room was "standing room only" because so many people were waiting for fills and they were running way behind.  That same day, after they took me back into a room, I waited for my doctor for 40 minutes - and he wasn't even the one doing fills.  I left worrying that when the time came for my fills, I'd be waiting for hours.  I left concerned about the accessibility of my doctor.  That was the first time that doubt really started to creep up on me.

Then today, my appointment was for pre-op nutrition and medication information.  This is the appointment that's usually scheduled for two weeks before surgery, but since I'm going to be on vacation next Monday (and they only do these appointments on Mondays), I had to have mine today.  What they didn't tell me when I scheduled it was that this was a group appointment.  While I suppose that I could have declined to discuss the details of my surgery, medication and diet in the group, I was so taken aback by the fact that it was a group appointment that the thought didn't even occur to me.  Why didn't they tell me beforehand that this was going to be a group appointment? 

And the RN who was running the group put together packets for everyone, except that most of the packets (including mine) were missing information.  So she had to keep leaving the room to make copies and helping us find the appropriate pages in our packets, because when they were there, they were inevitably out of order.  And while everyone else got a pre-surgery letter with the date and time of their surgery and their first scheduled fill, they didn't have my letter ready - it took them half an hour to get it together.

So I was not impressed by that.  I'm a very organized person, almost to the point of OCD.  I don't like information presented haphazardly.  I don't like feeling like certain information is behind withheld, which is kind of how I felt today.  And I don't love feeling like I'm inconveniencing the staff by asking to have my post-op appointment rescheduled to a day I don't have to work.

But the biggest disappointment of all today was the iBAND.  I was 95% certain that I was going to go ahead and have it.  There were a lot of advantages in my mind, and I was looking forward to getting that extra push.  And then I found out that because of where I have to have my surgery, I can't get the iBAND. 

And I'm...  pissed.  There's no other way to put it.  I'm pissed because I'm not having my surgery at the same place I had my EGD.  I'm told that it has to do with my insurance, but no one could help me understand why I could have my EGD there but not my surgery.  I'm pissed because I felt so much better about having surgery after my EGD - the RNs were so great when I had my EGD, and I felt reassured those were the people who would be taking care of me during and after my surgery.  I had a lot of anxiety before my EGD, just like I have a lot of anxiety about surgery, but I felt better having been to the facility and having experienced what I thought was world-class care.  And now I have to go back into an unknown situation to have surgery. 

And, honestly, I'm pissed that the iBAND was mentioned as a possibility.  Because I really got attached to the idea.  And now I feel a little bit let down. 

I'm still going to go through with the surgery, because I was going to do it before I knew that the iBAND was a possibility, and for me, it's 50% about the band and 50% about getting my hernia repaired, because I can't keep going with this kind of pain.  But I'm still disappointed.  And I didn't really want to associate my band surgery with disappointment.

Anyway.  Moving on. 

My two-week pre-surgery diet, in which I can have 3 protein drinks per day plus two cups of soup, starts on May 2nd.  Guess what starts on May 1st and goes until May 3rd?  An offsite team building program for my job.  It's so far offsite that they've gotten hotel rooms for us.  Which means that, while the entire team is eating breakfast, lunch and dinner together for 3 days in a remote hunting lodge (WTF), I'll be...  drinking shakes and trying to figure out where to microwave my soup.  *headdesk*

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Expense reports

I've spent the last two days trying (and mostly failing) to put $13,474 worth of travel expenses from the last two months into expense reports. 

The thing is, expense reports aren't hard, not if you do them immediately upon return from your trip.  Because that's when everything is fresh in your mind and you have all of your receipts. 

But, see, I hate doing expense reports.  And so I procrastinate - I generally don't get around to doing them until a couple of months after the travel.  At which point I've lost all of my receipts and have no memory of what actually happened when.  So me doing my expense reports mostly consists of printing out my corporate card statement, highlighting the charges that fall within the travel date, calling various hotels in the hopes that they can email me my folio, and crossing my fingers that things get approved.  And it takes me two days to get caught up.

I feel like there's an important learning that can be had from my expense report method.  Something about not procrastinating.  Something about seizing the moment and motivating yourself.  Something about not putting off until tomorrow what can be done today. 

And, for the love of god, something about how it's easier to tackle things as they happen, rather than waiting for them to pile up until they bury you.

Monday, April 16, 2012

On being super...

I'd love to be able to recap what's been going on around here since last week (12 airline flights, two stopovers in Minneapolis, four hours spent in Salt Lake City, several Vegas jackpots won), but I honestly can't focus on much of anything, as I am in a lot of pain.

I don't know if it's my hernia, my GERD or a combination of both, but I started getting a stomach ache after lunch (salad) on Friday.  It continued all weekend, building in intensity.  It was so bad last night that I couldn't sleep.  Every time I move, I feel like my insides are about to be on the outside. And I feel like I can't take a sick day or even leave the office a little early, because my boss has been maniacal about reminding me that I can only take a week of sick leave for my surgery before I'd need to go on short-term disability.  And that's not going to happen.  I feel like he's watching my out-of-office time like a hawk.  I cannot wait for my surgery - at this point, I'm not sure if I'm more excited about the band or the hernia repair.

In conclusion, I feel like ass. 

And to add insult to injury, it is particularly loud in my office today.  See, I have this theory that I'm a "super hearer."  My wife believes that she's a super taster (and that that gives her license to eat nothing but chicken fingers and soup).  She thinks that she tastes things much more acutely than other people, whereas I believe that I hear things much more sharply than others.  Like chewing.  And doorknobs rattling.  These are things that set me on edge even when I am in the best of moods, and since I'm not in a good mood today, these things are driving me CRAY-CRAY.  The woman whose desk is next to mine has been on a personal phone call for over an hour talking about her savings account, all while the various mis-programmed chiming clocks that she has at her desk chime too many times on the hour.  Seriously, I heard 11 dings when it was 2 o'clock.  At the end of my rope, I had to break out my noise canceling headphones. 

All I want to do is go home and curl up in the fetal position.  *whine*

Monday, April 2, 2012

I love the weekend

I can't remember the last time I had such a productive weekend. 

Saturday, we woke up early (7am!) and headed out on our grocery shopping extravaganza.  We don't normally grocery shop every week (wifey usually takes care of the shopping), but there were a bunch of great sales on Saturday, and we wanted to try to shop in a different neighborhood to see if we could get some different Albertson's Monopoly game pieces.  Three grocery stores later, we're stocked up and we saved close to 55%.

 Then we went home, put away the groceries and then immediately headed out again for The Hunger Games (time #5).  (We didnt' get any good Monopoly pieces, by the way.)

Now, contrary to what you might think, I don't love going to the movies.  Mostly, I don't love the people at the movies.  I usually find them obnoxious.  You know, teenagers who spend the whole time texting on their phones, people who explain the movie to the people sitting next to them, that kind of thing. 

If this is you, I hate you.

But the movie theater by my house has this great policy - No one under 16 admitted without parent or guardian 21 or older (I think they may have this policy because the theater serves beer).  As a result, this theater tends to be quieter.

Unfortunately, this was not the case on Saturday, as I ended up sitting next to a girl and her boyfriend while the girl explained everything that was happening.  Out loud.  But my lovely wife, knowing that I am easily irritated at the movies, offered to switch seats with me; however, in the process, I spilled a drink.  A very large drink.  All down the back of my pants.  So, while I made it through the rest of the movie, we decided to go home afterward and change for the gym, rather than go shopping, which was the original plan.

At the gym, the elliptical kicked my ass.  Seriously, I could only do it for 5 minutes.  I spent the rest of the time doing hills on the treadmill.

Sunday, we woke up a little later and went outside to weed.  There were some seriously large dandelions taking over the backyard.  After we were done, we decided to get in the pool.  It was still pretty chilly, but the day was so hot and the pool just looked so tempting.  Once I was in, I adjusted pretty quickly to the water temperature and really enjoyed it.  The weather is going to be cooler this week, so we may not be able to get back in for a while, but it was nice while it lasted. 

After the pool, it was off to the gym again, then back to shower, change and shop.  I got some new jeans at LB - size 24 (the size 22s fit fine, but they were way too short).  Then some bathmats at Target, and then another showing of The Hunger Games (#6).  Everyone was polite this time, and there was no spilling. 

Today, I'm leaving work early to run to the gym and then home to shower and change, then back out - there's a thing at work, and I have to be there until 10.  Which means I won't get home until 11, and then I have to catch a 7am flight in the morning.  Ack!  I already want a nap!