Well folks…its back to the auld clothes and porridge for me. I was discharged from the Nuffield at 11.30am on Thursday 5th August…eighteen hours post-op.
I was tired and still a bit sore after a pretty rough night, however, after a quick shower and a little help from my make-up bag I felt and looked almost human!
The hours immediately after my surgery were not the greatest I have ever spent and I would be lying if I said it was fun. Between recurring bouts of sharp wind pain, dragging myself to the loo every 2 hours due to the fluids that were being pumped into my left arm and bouts of retching I did not sleep very well at all…I still had no regrets whatsoever.
The night nurses were great and kept popping in to check on me to change my drip and keep me topped up with painkillers and anti-sickness.
At breakfast time I was `allowed` a low fat yoghurt and a hot drink…still no roll and bacon haha!
I opted for a nice pot of peppermint tea to go with it which was very soothing and helped break some more of that pesky wind pain. The yoghurt tasted delicious…it was the first I had eaten in 36 hours. I ate it very slowly and it stayed down…yippee!!
At 9.30am a very smartly dressed Mr Galloway popped in to see how I was getting on. He had a good look at my wounds and asked me how I was feeling. As good as to be expected I said… I felt like I had been kicked in the guts but apart from that was ok! The pain was manageable and I was keeping fluids down so he said I could get off home later in the morning…great!
Hannah my dietitian popped in as well. She is lovely and very easy to talk to as well as being helpful and informative… not in the least bit patronising or dictatorial…thank the Lord!
When we had met up pre-op she had thoroughly gone through my personal diet history and we had discussed what I could and couldn’t eat after surgery. She wanted to check before discharge that I knew what I should and more importantly shouldn’t be doing when I got home.
Hannah also gave me a little booklet (my new bible) to refer to which detailed the rules and dietary stages I would go through over the next few weeks.
Basically for now I could move straight onto SMALL amounts of healthy, soft and pureed food…I was allowed anything that was soft enough to pour off a spoon was how she put it.
It is vital that I do not eat solid foods or overeat at this stage as this could result in pain, vomiting or complications by putting pressure on my band and the internal stitches holding it in place. Here is a wee list of my do`s and don’t`s.
1. All my food must be pureed, soft and smooth like baby food…yum!
2. I need to eat slowly…this will be a challenge!
3. I must not eat more than 5-6 tablespoons at a time…as above.
4. I should avoid food high in calories, sugar or fat…eek!
5. I need to drink plenty fluids…guessing that does not include red, white or rose!
6. I should avoid fizzy drinks as the gas will cause wind pain…no ta!
7. I need to try and drink one pint of skimmed milk daily for calcium and take a vitamin supplement to prevent deficiencies.
I have added a sample diet sheet for those of you who may be interested:
|Breakfast||One Weetabix with milk or
A tub of yoghurt or fromage frais or
Three tablespoons of porridge or Ready Brek made up
|Lunch||Smooth soup (about a cupful)or
|Dinner||Shepherd’s pie or
Fish pie or
Chicken in white sauce or
Mashed potato and cheese or
Pureed vegetables and mashed potato
|Between meal snacks (once per day)||Custard with stewed apple or mashed banana or
Milk pudding (e.g. rice or sago) or
Yoghurt or fromage frais
|Fluids||Water (not fizzy) or
Tea, coffee or skimmed milk or
Fruit juice or
Many post-op patients seem to be asked to follow a liquids only diet for several weeks before being allowed onto the puree stage so I guess I will not as restricted as some folks out there.
Now fast forward 5 days please…
…I am home and reality (or should I say the band) has bitten!
…I literally have hardly eaten a thing…water is a chore and I feel constantly nauseated…the very smell of food is making me retch just now! Even my fine friend Mr bacon roll has magically lost his allure.
Since I have gotten home up till this point I have been managing about 2 yoghurts a day…if that. I just do not feel hungry…in fact it`s gone past that because I just feel constantly sick.
My mother who is staying for a few days has been driving me nuts with constant dietary suggestions…for Christ’s sake…it`s not like I am going to fade away overnight.
…Two days post-op she came back from the supermarket armed with provisions and decided to embark on only what I can describe as a mini cookathon! It`s just a pity that the beef stew and roast lamb she knocked up were not suitable sustenance for a post-op bander…help!
She looked pained and somewhat hurt when I suggested that food was really not top of my wish list right now.
I felt bad because I know she was only trying to help….in her head though it’s a case of… if it`s broke then feed it!
…I don`t think she knows what to do to help me just now. It must be hard for her because the old rules just do not apply no more.
…See that’s the thing with this band malarkey, it just doesn’t affect me.
…I need to keep that in mind.
To be continued….