Day 32: The Night Before

Last night was the first night not wearing the sling bumpers. I wish I could say it was a restful one. From 11:15p-2:30a I woke up every few minutes without feeling in my hands. I could again feel the nerve being pinched.

Though it took a few hours of broken sleep to figure it out, I finally found a position that allowed me to sleep through the night. I’m hoping to fall asleep without issue tonight.

I decided to weigh myself again this morning, just prior to surgery. I clocked in at another 2 lbs lost for a total now of 25 lbs in four weeks. 

I know this is mostly muscle mass, which was confirmed by the orthopedic surgeon yesterday when he told me that my upper back and shoulder muscles have all atrophied. It will be a long road to get through recovery and then work on building back some of this muscle…even what’s necessary just to be able to stand up for longer periods of time.

We ran into a few scheduling snafus with the pre-op team. We got that all cleared up and we headed back to UCSF pre-op blood work, an anesthesiologist consultation and surgical registration. 

While at UCSF my phone felt as if it was going to catch on fire. Not understanding what was going on I turned it off while meeting with the anesthesiologist. Sitting in the waiting room waiting for blood work I powered up my phone and realized what happened.

Scott Stratten was giving the closing keynote at Content Marketing World. At the end of his speech instead of talking about his upcoming book, he told all 2,500 attendees my story. He asked if they would send me a tweet to encourage me heading into tomorrow. So many tweets came in within a couple of minutes that it must have caused my phone to overheat.

I am deeply and truly grateful to Scott and every person who reached out. Thank you. I tried to reply to every person who was nice enough to send me a tweet. If I missed you, it wasn’t intentional.

Tonight we have received encouraging phone calls, texts, emails, tweets and Facebook updates non-stop throughout the night. I have tried to reply or acknowledge all of them.

Besides replying to all of the messages flowing in, tonight has been a low key night. I tried to spend some time just talking with Laura. We talked through tomorrow, our fear and how we will continue to push through any challenge no matter what.

I have to crash a bit earlier tonight because we have to be at UCSF by 6a PST tomorrow for pre-op. The brain surgery starts at 7:30a. It is expected to take approximately six hours. Once surgery is finished I will then be moved into neuro ICU for observation. At that point Laura and my mother-in-law will be able to come see me.

It is likely that I will be kept in neuro ICU for the first night before being transferred to a regular private room. What will be nice about that, beyond being out of ICU, is that Laura will be able to spend the night, much like she did when I was at Marin General. Unfortunately they don’t allow guests to spend the night in the neuro ICU. 

Though Laura will be unable to spend the night tomorrow, she will get to see her dad. Her dad is flying into town from CT tomorrow for the weekend. Originally it was to see my mother-in-law for her birthday on Friday and to spend time with us before my surgery. However, now he will come visit me on Friday for a bit. 

While we’re all staying positive about tomorrow, we are scared. We will get through whatever is ahead for us.

I will do my best to send an update as soon as I can after surgery. If I am unable to, I will ask Laura to send a quick update and I will send a fuller one once I am able to.

Thank you for all of the encouragement and support heading into tomorrow morning.