Popsicles and surgery

I have spent the last few days pretty sick with a head cold. Also I think I may have suffered from a mild concussion last week after… ahemfalling on my head a second time during yoga. Who knew it was so hazardous?

Anyways, my point is that I’ve not been feeling great. When I was at the peak of my pathetic whiney-feel-sorry-for-me attitude two days ago, I was telling Liam about how when I got sick  as a kid, my mom used to buy me popsicles to soothe my throat. Because he’s awesome, he went out and bought me a whole bunch of popsicles, grape ones (my favourite!), and also a bag of fuzzy peaches, a bag of sour patch kids, and a giant bag of salt and vinegar chips. All of which I ate on the same day.. minus a few popsicles. Now, though I feel better head-cold-wise, I feel worse in a different sense because of all the crap in my system.

But I’m digressing again. I hope you don’t think there’s  a point to this post.

Today I was having a popsicle whilst browsing through the wordpress reader, and because of it I suddenly remembered a stupid memory from long ago. And then it had to be a blog post. So here we go.

When I was 12 I went in for knee surgery because I tore my meniscus. I was always a wuss as a kid. I had a bad phobia of needles to the point where I fainted if I had one, and so you can imagine it was pretty stressful to be there for the pre-surgery prep. I cried like a maniac. One of those really pathetic cries where you can’t breathe, can’t speak, and look like you’ve just witnessed the execution of twenty innocent kittens when really nothing bad is happening to you at all. That kind of cry. I remember the woman in the hospital bed next to me really took pity on me, and tried to make me feel better by explaining how much of a breeze it would be and how the surgeon was an expert, etc. She called me pumpkin. She’s the only person who has ever called me that before.

I’ll cut a long story short. I got knocked out via gas, and coming out of it was the most fuzzy, disorienting experience I have ever had, as one might expect. I remember being wheeled around and periodically abandoned in strange hallways by different people on my little bed. As I started coming to I thought to myself this is horrible, this must be a dream. Thank god it’s a dream. Hang on, this isn’t  a dream at all… Oh god this sucks so much. This is awful. Eventually they wheeled me into the post-surgery room where I would be recovering with all the other less-wussy patients.

I remained in this weird disoriented state for a long time. I didn’t know where I was, I didn’t know where my mom was, I was scared, and I was delirious. For some reason one of the nurses offered me a popsicle, which I guess is pretty standard. Despite lying there like a corpse with my eyes closed and with no desire for a popsicle, I answered yes. One little word which I would come to regret very soon. And so she brought one over for me. I was still too groggy to sit up, or even open my eyes, so the nurse decided she better physically take my hand, and forcibly make my fingers hold on to the stick. After that she walked away, leaving me feeling very burdened with the cold non-treat.

I strained my eyes open long enough to see the popsicle held like an Olympic torch by my hand above my face. My arm was bent at the elbow making a right angle, but I was still lying vertical on the bed, barely able to discern my surroundings.  All I knew is I was lying there, holding this popsicle as though I was the god damn Statue of Liberty, except without the pride or prestige. With zero desire or ability to eat the stupid thing, and with little strength left to maintain the feat, I lay there holding the popsicle. I heard voices around me and knew people were passing me by, yet they paid me no attention at all. I kept hoping in useless desperation that one of them would see my very sad predicament and come relieve me of the horrible chore. Yet nothing happened. This went on for what seemed like FOREVER, until the popsicle actually started to melt, oozing sticky popsicle remnants all over my arm. And though I knew I was uncomfortable, and though I knew I must look like a complete and utter moron to all who beheld me, I just remained there like that. Because I was too weak, and too out of it to do anything about it.

4 thoughts on “Popsicles and surgery

      1. Isn’t that funny how we hold on to parts of our experiences? I have a lot of those half-memories from my childhood too. They’re like little circles of activity, one part or another that just really made an impression, and the rest of it just kind of fades out. It’s like a memory spotlight.

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