She is 30 years old and ready to start having babies. She notices a bit of pain in her tummy and is told by her gynaecologist that one of her ovaries is huge and needs to come out. She lands on my operating list this morning.
We discuss various pain relief options and come up with a plan. The operation goes really well. The tumour is the size of half a rugby ball and it’s out. However, afterwards her pain is unbearable! We try out this and that and the other. Wait and wait some more. She starts to get drowsy and sick and we need to do something more to help her cope. Watching someone in pain is distressing. Having discussed the ‘injection in the back’ (epidural) option in detail with her earlier, I now decide to go ahead with it after a quick chat with her.
3 hours have now passed.
It’s time to go home.
15 minutes after the procedure, she is sleeping peacefully. I gently whisper her name to see if she will respond. She half opens her eyes, looks at me, smiles and says, “Thank you! I feel so much better.”
I thank her.
Today I really needed to look after someone and make them feel better. Thank you!
In the past I have thought of myself as a very empathic person. Now I know that there is always scope for more.
Once again, it’s all about love.
“Nothing is lost forever. There is a kind of painful progress – longing for what’s left behind. And dreaming ahead.” – from the film ‘Still Alice’.