T-17 Days until Surgery

I apologize for the delay in this update. It’s hard to believe but only 17 days left until surgery and the beginning of my life without Herman. For those of you new to the email updates – Herman is the affectionate name I gave to the thing that resides in my head uninvited. In fact, Dayna and I have decided to have fun and spruce up the next few days and updates.

So before I get to the medical updates some housekeeping items: Going forward, updates will be sent from our new temporary email account that has been sent out via separate email. The reason for the temporary email is simple – it allows Dayna, Joelle or myself to send out email updates without clogging up personal accounts and gives easy access to one distribution list by multiple users. That being said, feel free to email questions to that account, etc. If you want to leave me a personal type email, please feel free to continue using my aol account. Once I am out of the hospital and recovered I will close out the gmail account thus ending my relationship with Herman. So last Monday represented the last of the scheduled pre-op exams. I had the lovely experience of visiting countless doctors and technicians. We were also able to scope out the area for those that plan on visiting (i.e. family, friends, paparazzi, etc). You know D and I, two peas in a pod. I don’t think NYU knew what to do with us. We are shameless, and made friends on every floor we visited even when we didn’t have an appointment there. Dad I made you proud, dancing and sashaying down the corridors of NYU.

So here’s the news. My CAT scan appointment did reveal that I have a lovely brain and I was even fitted with a nifty headpiece to wear during surgery that will help guide the two surgeons through the process should they need to use the MRI that will be in the room during the procedure.

I then went to the big ENT appointment. Folks – more good news here. They feel confident that they can give it a try through my nose. The past surgeries will not preclude them from this route which was an initial fear. That being said, they did remind me the possibility exists that a craniotomy may be needed once they get in and access the situation. My ENT was kind enough to walk me through his part of the procedure. Somewhere around the point where he said he would stick a small camera up one of the nostrils, I tuned out and was practically on the floor. I nearly passed out again when he looked up said nostrils. Thank goodness I brought Dayna, because for all I know he was planning on giving me a nose job. As most of you know from previous surgeries, ENT’s and I don’t mix. I did pre-warn him that he should stand at least 12 feet away from me if I wake up with packing up my nose and sinus cavity. For those of you who don’t believe me just ask my father and Dr. Stewart the previous ENT who did my deviated septum surgery, he still walks with a limp.

Then on to pre-op admin. Ahhh more blood was given, an EKG, and urine. ahhh how I love urine samples, you would think by this day in age they would have come up with a more sophisticated way to do this instead of embarrassing you as you carry your clear cup of pee around the pre-op floor asking what to do with it. Couldn’t they come up with fancier containers, or how about toile or flowered cups, or even an Ed Hardy designed cup so I don’t look like a complete loser at this stage of the game. It was bad enough I had to wear one of those gowns with my tush hanging out the back. And of course I wore a thong, for those of you who were wondering. If you have a nice ass might as well flaunt it while you can. Sorry Dad and Father Bill if that was TMI.

Last on our tour, but not least we did spend a lovely time with the anesthesiologist. I say lovely, because every word out of her mouth was OK love, OK sweetie, OK pooh bear. I thought Dayna and I were going to burst into laughter. But since she is the woman with the power to make the pain go away, we were very polite and dug our fingers into our hands as she inserted love into every sentence at least TWICE. She did assure me I would not feel any pain throughout the entire hospital stay. LOVE her.

Some things we did learn during this recent trip. No children under 15 are allowed to visit the Neuro ICU, the entrance to the hospital is on 34th street between 1st and FDR. No balloons are allowed in the hospital. But most important – I will not have WiFi access in the ICU. Which leads me to my next point. I will have my iphone with me and with any luck I will have a new Mac laptop – but will not be able to use it until I am in a regular room. I am told thru some secret sources that I will have 3G access – so yeah – I will be checking email, facebook and gmail remotely from my iPhone in the ICU. As if you thought I would be able to go 2 days untethered. PUL LEEEASE.

OK now to the good stuff. I did some reconnaissance.

For your visiting pleasure: The NYU Tisch hospital entrance is located at 400 East 34th street (between 1st and FDR) There is plenty of parking in the area. If it is a bad hair day, you can even park in the lot on the East Side of 1st and 30th – but beware it is a schlepp through the bowels of the medical center to get to my floor. There seems to be some debate as the floor I will be on once I am out of recovery. Here is what I do know. The surgery will be on the 6th floor. I will be in recovery on the 6th floor. I believe after that I will be up on the 12th floor Neuro ICU and Neuro Surgical floor. Again, I am reminded I will be in Neuro ICU for two days. I do not know what time my surgery is on the 22nd, I will send out an email as soon as I know sometime on the 21st. The surgery itself will be anywhere from 5+ hours. Being the uber patient that I am, I’m hoping to be out in 3.

If you plan on being at the hospital the day of surgery you will need to be on the 6th floor via Elevator K. Now here is a little bitty I will share. If you are at the Lee Removes Herman surgery party (i.e., in the waiting room) you will not only receive a goody bag – as if you think we wouldn’t turn it up a notch – this is a class act folks, but you will also be allowed to visit me in the recovery room before ICU. This my friends – may be your chance to take those pictures that you can sell for a lot of money when I am famous in a few years from the launch of the product line. You heard it hear first. Now although there will be goody bags complete with the necessary comfort items for visitors – I also know you may get hungry. Here is what I can offer you. There is a very good diner The East Bay Diner located on the corner of 29th and 1st. There are a number of Sushi restaurants on 2nd avenue between 30th and 34th. MORE importantly there is a Starbucks located at 32nd @ 2nd Ave. I like grande Cafe Mocha’s and if it is warm out Java Chip Frapp’s. Hey I’m just saying if you are making the trip – I did have a tumor removed, show the girl some love. Oh yeah, in case you want to celebrate Irish style. There is an Irish Pub located on the West side of 2nd avenue between 29th and 30th. I like single malt scotch (again, I’m just saying).

Well I think that’s it folks for this update. Again, thank you all for the love, support, positive energy, good karma, that you continue to send. I am overwhelmed at the friends and family that have stepped out of the shadows of years past and continuously send me lovely emails, facebook emails and phone calls. I’ve tried to keep my attitude positive and my outlook bright, but know that the only reason that has been possible is due to ALL of your support. It’s interesting one of the sayings that comes to my mind these days and really holds a lot of weight is: A true friend walks in when the others walk out. So from my heart, Thank you for walking in!

Oh my one last point – whoops, I almost forgot. Yes, I was in the hospital Wed/Thu due to a complication caused by Herman. I am resting comfortably with a little help from my friend Morphine. This was in fact unexpected and unfortunately very painful. It is possible that some of these little issues may pop up between now and the 22nd – but I assure you I have my eye on the prize and know only good things are to come.

With Love, Indie Lee