One of the things I remember the most clearly from when I was eight was when I was in the ICU. You’d think with all the medication I wouldn’t remember this very much, but I do. I remember having an oxygen tube and how weird it felt. I didn’t like it. Not one little bit.
So I pulled it out.
A few seconds later, one of the nurses would come over and say to me, “No, Lauren. You need to leave that in there, sweetie.”
So I would grudgingly put it back in when they were looking. Then pull it out a few minutes later. I probably drove those poor nurses crazy, pulling my oxygen out of my nose every few minutes. But I didn’t understand what it was for back then. I could breathe just fine, or so I thought. I knew I was pretty weak and had just had major surgery, but my chest was rising and falling like it was supposed to. So I didn’t see why I needed a tube up my nose.
What a contrast that is between then and now!
Today Tim and I went to my Ear, Nose, and Throat specialist. These appointments are long due to wait times. Normally I bring my oxygen with me. This time, I didn’t. I was in a hurry on my way out the door. My hand had my phone and my kindle (priorities, you know) and the cart that I could carry the tank on was in the car already. The tank actually in my portable cart was empty from when we had gone to see The Dark Knight Rises the week before. We normally change it out the evening before my doctor’s appointments or as we’re loading it into the car the next day, but this time we forgot.
The appointment itself took two hours. In the two hours we are moved around a lot. We go from the waiting room to talking to nurses to more waiting. Finally, we get to a room to see the doctor and then after all that’s over, we move to the procedure room where they clean my ears out.
After that was a visit to Wal-Mart where we unfortunately had a lot to get on different sections of the store. Tim was left to do most of the work because I was already exhausted. I went to get the cat food because there were no little scooters to help me get around and it was the place I could get to the easiest. I got the cat food and sat down and waited for Tim in the pharmacy section because there were some benches.
I had plenty of opportunity to people watch. Which as a writer is normally a favorite activity of mine when I’m out and about. Today, though, I was too tired to enjoy it. All I wanted was to go home and get back on my oxygen. I knew I would regret not bringing it and I did. When I got home, one of the first things I did was turn on my oxygen machine and put the tube in my nose.
What a contrast!
I felt instantly better.
I’m still worn out from the day’s events. It was pretty long. But I sure am glad to have my oxygen back.
It makes all the difference.