My surgery

Thank you for your prayers. I wrote this blog while resting at home after being released from the hospital last Saturday.

Last Wednesday, October 8, my wife Ellen and I checked in at the hospital in preparation for my ear surgery early next day. My best friend, Rev. Jesse Dedel, and his wife Rose kept us company till almost midnight. We ate chicken burgers and salad from Wendy’s, sort of a “last meal.” :-)

The anesthesiologist informed that he made available for me a sleeping tablet that I could take just in case I would feel anxious and couldn’t sleep. I admit I dread the surgery. (I heard enough horror stories about people ending up comatose due to allergic reaction to anesthesia or waking up in the middle of the surgery.)

But that night, by the grace of God I slept soundly.

By 5AM I was awake. The nurse inserted the IV. I changed into the hospital gown. Then they wheeled me to operating room. I was even joking with the doctor about taking video footages of my operation and posting it on You Tube. They hooked me up to the monitors. Then I fell asleep. (Maybe, the anesthesiologist secretly injected his sleeping stuff in the IV when I got distracted about the You Tube talk.)

I woke up in the recovery room. It was as if I closed my eyes just for a moment and then opened it. (Actually the operation took longer than expected. The doctor told us before the surgery that it would take 3 hours max. It really took 4 hours and 45 minutes. I was supposed to be back to my room by 12noon. I returned 3PM.) It was a blur. I was so groggy. I vomited time and again. I slept. I woke up. I felt as if a horse kicked me in the head. Numbing pain, if there is such a phrase. I remember touching my right ear and feeling the thick bandage. I slept again.

When I opened my eyes I was back in my room. I cried out of relief. That the surgery was over.

According to my doctor, the infection is worse than he thought. The CT scan did not show it. Other than drilling through the temporal bone that lies between my brain and my ear and draining the infection, he had to remove two of the three bones in my inner ear. The infection has corroded them. Needless to say, I would lose part of my hearing. We would just have to wait for my ear to heal. Then, a hearing test would show how much hearing I lost or still had. There is now a three-inch gauze packed inside my ear, which will be replaced every two weeks. The stitches will be removed this week.

Ellen and me are comforted with all your prayers. During the time Ellen got so worried that the surgery is taking longer, dear friends rushed to the hospital to pray with her. We got a steady stream of visitors even until a few minutes before I was released from the hospital. We also received encouraging text messages, e-mails and calls.

Thank God for all of you. My family felt so loved. Your prayers pulled us through. I pray that the Lord would bless you a hundredfold.

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