Friday, October 23, 2009

“This is Las Vegas. We have our own way, and we just let people be how they are.”

This statement was given to me by Grace, Nurse of Nurses, here in the PCU. To be honest, Grace, or Amazing Grace as we call her behind her back, is one of two Nurse of Nurses here. The other being Extraordinary Emily. But for today I am blessedly in the hands of Grace for a third day in a row, sandwiched between two nights under the care of Ray-Ray, Grace’s best friend and the kind of man you wish was your own best friend.

But I digress. Easy to do here in Vegas.

The PCU is a netherworld between ICU, where gossamer threads of mortality are nearly visible in the always florescent glare and must be brushed by as delicately as Shelob’s Lair, and “The Ward,” the rest of the hospital. (In my Tramadol soaked brain I just commented “Ward, I’m worried about my beaver,” cracking myself up.)

Here on the PCU we are one firm step up from the ICU toward the remainders of our days but still dealing 24/7 with heavy damage done to us by other human beings or organisms which lack negotiation skills. Grace tells me she has three patients besides me and I’m the only person on the entire floor who is coherent. Which makes me something of a road-side attraction. In the midst of my extremis I’m having some profoundly human connections here in Vegas.

I saw half my abdominal incision today, about four inches of it. It’s grotesque but I touched it gently and reminded my belly I love it, all will be well someday. I did that for my Mamma after her surgeries, and now must love my self without her here.

Except, of course, she never left me.

More stories to come but hydrocodone, heparin, Protonix, potassium, mag sulfate, and levaquin await.

Thank you for being mine out there.

This post is about Thursday, October 22, 2009. Cross-posted at Meta Watershed and Group News Blog as dictated to Jesse by Maggie.