Surgery date is confirmed, now what is there for you to do…….a lot!

You just found out that you need to have surgery.  This may be your first or your tenth. Either way, are you mentally and emotionally prepared for that big day?  If not, keep reading to see if there are a few things you forgot to do.

When to schedule the big day?

The first and foremost thing that needs to be done is to schedule the surgery, but not just according to your calendar, but of those that will be the primary caregiver.

Recently, I had my 5th back surgery and I was all ready to go the next day but my husband who would be staying home with me for 6 weeks wasn’t too keen to just that quickly. You see, he is a Denver Police Officer and we needed to make sure that he could take off a chunk of 6 weeks, all together.

We needed to contact his Sargent and make sure that it was a good time.  We needed to check with HR to make sure that he could go on FMLA and stay home with me that long.  And we needed to check if it was a good time with insurance to see if we would be paying more of a co-pay at the end of the year or was it better the beginning of the year.

Once all that information was gathered, we were better off picking the right day that would work for both of us. Believe it or not, the 23rd of December was the best day.  Even though it was two days before Christmas, financially this was the best time for us.  And this past December 23, 2016. I had my surgery.

What needs to be done before the big day?

Many people think that all you need to do is pick a day and have the surgery.  In reality that is far from the truth.  I had multiple lists going on for different parts of my life to help sort things out.  My first list was the second most important part of my life, my children.

Not only did I need to plan on where they would be the two days I would be in the hospital, I also needed to find a place for them a few days after.  You will want to have the home as quiet at possible the first few days of coming home.

I was very lucky with this surgery and my two kids were able to spend the first two night with my in-laws and then both kids were going to go to the mountains to ski for the next week. Issues came up, and only one of my kids were able to go. I needed to make sure then that they were packed for the first two days and then the youngest one was packed for the week in the Colorado mountains.

Like I had mentioned, I had made a list of things the kids would need, I made a list of what I would need and I also made lists for what the dog would need.  So not only prepare for the “humans” in your life that will be impacted due to the surgery, but also the 4 legged animals need a list.

Due to where I was having surgery at, I was going to be half way around town.  That being said, no one lived close enough to let out our dog or was able to take him during the time we weren’t home.  So finding a kennel was a must do on my list of “to-dos”.

Finding a kennel isn’t an easy task.  My dog, Loki is a 106 lb Rottweiler. A lot of kennels are for smaller dogs and when they see this hunk of a dog, they turn him away.  But this time we found the best kennel in Boulder,  Colorado.  It is called Camp Pow Wow.  It turned out to be the best place for Loki.  Check it out here, and know that there are locations throughout the United States.

What to do for yourself?

After you have taken care of your “to do” list, there are things that need to be taken care of for yourself.  One of the main things to do is make sure that you have a bag pack, with everything that you are going to need for your stay. You will want a going home outfit. Something comfortable and something that won’t hurt any incision sits. Then if you decided to not where the wonderful hospital gown every waking moment, plan to take an outfit for the days you want to feel normal.

Now that you are packed, you need an important document ready to take to the hospital with you.  You need a will or a Power of Attorney.  I have a will and make sure that the hospital knows that I have one.  This last surgery, I took the will with me and made sure that the hospital has a copy.  You want to make sure that if anything would happen. your wish is done properly.

Now to get things down!

Now that you know a few things that I did to prepare for surgery.  The first think that you need to do after the date is set, is sit down and start to make list.  You should do a “to do” list, a ‘what needs to be down” list. and lastly a “to pack” list. Start with these and see where they take you. Everyone needs to plan a little different and that’s ok.  Just make sure you plan according to your needs.

Remember that it’s ok to be nervous and scared.  Even though I have done the same one for 5 different times, I still get worried and scared.  Find someone to talk to about your emotions and know that this is something out of your control and you do the best that you can.  I will be writing a post about fears, nerves, and being out if control for surgery, so look out for that.  Until then, try to keep yourself as calm as possible and know that it will be over just as fast as it all started.

 

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