Monday, March 26, 2012

Montreal 2009 Day Three

Montreal 2009 Day Three

Current mood: ecstatic

May 15, 2009

I woke much earlier than anticipated, and yes it was still true, the Bruins lost in game 7 last night and a lot of wind had been taken out of my sails. But I needed not to be awake so early as my appointment with Dr Brassard was not until 1:40. Fortunately, I fell back to sleep after about a half hour of tossing and turning. Surprisingly, despite all the walking on Thursday and wearing jeans the past few days, my pain had been lowered but this morning, things were a bit more sensitive.

When I woke up for good, I played on the computer for about an hour and that's when the thoughts of heading home after my appointment started to enter my head. I was already depressed about the Bruins, this way I could salvage the weekend instead of driving Saturday. It could keep my costs down, despite already paying for the room Friday night, but when I was getting ready to head into the shower,I could hear a cat meowing next door to be let in. Great, now I really miss my cats too. A couple daysof eating alone and going to the sports bar alone, gets real old, real quick. I also felt after Thursday, maybe I should bother the convalescence home for long periods any more.

As I showered, I made sure things were really clean 'down there' as that's what Dr Brassard would be focusing on. And there was blood. Not a little blood, but the most blood down there that I've seen in over a year. The shower scene in 'Carrie' came quickly to mind. It was quite a while before I could get it to stop. And even checking my legs a dozens times before getting dressed, I was finding and washing new blood trails.

Before I left the bed & breakfast I had a long conversation with Chantal, the owner of the b & b. She houses a lot of the family, spouses, friends and supporters of Dr Brassard's patients, so she was extremely familiar with the goings on. It was then that she forewarned me, if I needed any type of surgery, it wouldn't be performed before Monday or Tuesday. The hospital was closed for the long weekend (Victoria Day, I believe). There went my thoughts of possibly going home early. It also explained the mass exodus of patients on Thursday.

I made my way over to the convalescence home, which is next door to the hospital and the doctor's office. I thought I would see Nurse Carole, but to my surprise, the third shift nurse was on, Mauricio. In my two week stay in Montreal, usually my only interaction with him was him coming into my room two times a night to check my vitals, and him getting ready to leave for home as I was heading down to breakfast. We had a brief catching up, but it was the most conversation I had ever had with him.

I then headed over to Dr Brassard's office and patiently waited. I was plenty early. Finally it was my turn, and Dr Brassard seemed happy to see me again. we briefly caught up and we discussed the findings of my primary care physician, the e-mail I had sent and the pain and infections I had been continually having. He was concerned, and we moved over to the examination room. As I changed and he prepared coffee in a small room office the examination room, I told him the story of how my primary care physician broke character and was completely awed by the impressive work done by Dr Brassard. I believe 'shock & awe' would describe his first reactions to Brassard's impressive work.

Once in the stir-ups, for the second time in my life, Dr Brassard immediately saw the cause of the blood, the infections and a lot of the pain. He was very surprised at the area that was friable. It was the entire area around the clitoris. He checked internally with the speculum and everything internal was perfect. He said that things were not as bad as he feared and that he would need to cauterize the friable area with silver nitrate. He hemmed and hawed about anti-biotics, which he wanted to wait a few weeks before starting them. But then, he didn't want me to have to come back. I assured him, returning to Montreal was not a problem. So we left it as he felt was best, cauterize and I would return in three weeks. The cauterizing didn't hurt by any means, but for the first time, I knew the nerves to the clitoris were still alive. In fact jumping ahead, when a nurse friend, Mayzy, found out where my friable area was, she immediately replied "no wonder it hurt when you wore pants or shorts!"

Knowing I was now coming back in three weeks for a follow up, I knew my plan to head home was a good one. I headed back to the b & b, got my belongings and booked my room for June 9. I found a place to eat that had looked interesting as I drove by it the last couple of days, La Casa Grecque. The atmosphere was really nice, the food, fair at best. But I knew I had to make one last stop at the convalescence home.

The second shift nurse on that evening was Francine. She was just starting when I was there for my surgery. Her English was very broken but she tried so hard to learn. And there I was lying in bed, trying to help teach her using a collage of photos of the Mod Chick Mafia, that Gaily have gifted all of the MCM with for Christmas. Francine was a big girl but had a beautifully warm smile. I missed Francine when I visited last April as she was off for her daughter's wedding. I just had to visit Francine before returning to the States.

I returned to the home and walked in. Francine came out of the kitchen and I didn't recognise her at first. Until I saw that awesome smile. She had lost 85 pounds since I saw her fifteen months ago. We hugged like long lost family members. As far as I'm concerned, she and the other nurses are family. We caught up for quite a bit, then I headed to the sitting room where I met the two current patients. Nicole, a Male to Female (MtF) and Liam, a Female to Male (FtM) on his third visit of five. Funny of all of the FtM's I met in Montreal all were on their third stage. We sat and talked at length. Both were from Canada and I gave as much advice to help them both and talked them both through their nerves.

They both loved having me there to talk with and as they called me, "an Angel From God" for stopping in to talk, chat and help them both through a scary time. Hmmmmm, just this morning I had been saying I should stay away from the convalescence home, and here I was, back into loving it. Helping people has really become my true calling and I love it more than doing anything else in the world. Now I was truly regretting that I was going home early. I wished I could have stayed through the weekend. To meet such nice folks, that truly appreciated my putting their minds and nerves at ease.

But as we sat and talked, Liam (FtM) was full of nice compliments and praise for the 90 minutes I was there. From my hair, earrings, kindness, figure etc. Overwhelmingly nice.......then it dawned on me........OMG, this guy is flirting with me! A first. And it took me quite awhile to actually catch on. Certainly shocked me, no doubt. But typical me, I called him on it. Several times.

But their dinner time approached and it was time for me to head back home. Being such wonderful people, I wished I could have stayed and taken them into Montreal and be able to talk more. Here I was leaving Montreal, now I couldn't wait to get back. Yup, helping folks at the convalescence home, is where I want to be. If I could be there every weekend I would. The hell with chasing race cars all over south Canada and the north east United States. This was much, much more rewarding.

Good news is, last April I left the home by leaving my heart ( I won't mention the items I left the first time there!) and I cried the majority of the way from Montreal to Monadnock Speedway, where I had to be for a race. This time I just smiled the whole way home. I knew that I helped to wonderfully nice people and in three weeks, I'd be to help the next group of patients.

And so far, the cauterizing has done wonders. No more signs of blood, or infection and the majority of pain is showing signs of leaving. Yes my primary care physician was correct, go up to your surgeon and get checked out. Physically and mentally, I'm so glad I did.

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