Go Time

Time is a strange concept.

When you want something to happen, when you’re waiting for a specific day to come, a certain event, a special someone to come over, or a big day to commence, time seems to act like itself — it takes its time. It drags on, seems like it is passing impossibly slow, draws itself out so every single minute can feel like a century, every hour an eternity. Then, when you try to cherish time, make every moment count, just live in the moment, it does something totally opposite. It flies.

The idea that in a week from now I’ll be recovering from brain surgery is mind blowing, to say the least. I feel like we’ve been talking about this for so long now, but the talking has turned into planning, and the planning has turned into actions, and the actions into reality. Now it is here, and it’s happening. It’s go time.

This past week I concluded my last pre-op test before I head out to California, and I would be lying if I said it went smoothly. My surgeon ended up deciding to do a bleeding time after all, and after several phone calls into St. Luke’s hospital, all the necessary equipment was transferred there and was waiting patiently for my mother and I to arrive. To say we were a bit of a high priority may quite possibly be an understatement, for as soon as we got there we walked straight past a waiting room full of people, into the office, in which numerous phone calls were made announcing our arrival. I kind of felt like a celebrity. It was an odd feeling to have.

After everything was set up I was placed in a special room with a big blue chair that dominated the majority of the area. The nurse came in, cut my arm, and the test began. At first everything was going good, the cut was rather small, maybe a little deeper than I would have liked, but nothing I couldn’t handle. I started watching the blood pour out, and the nurse took her little circular piece of paper that she used to wipe off the blood coming out, which, by the way, does not feel very good being pressed into an open wound, but all was well. I tried staying focused on what she was talking about when things started feeling a little funny. A wave of nausea had come over me, and suddenly I couldn’t focus on what the nice lady was saying, or really anything at all. She asked me if I was okay, then proceeded to lay me on my back because my face had turned green..and my lips white. At that point I had been bleeding for about five minutes, and the thought of going on any longer made me want to pass out, but I ended up clotting at six minutes and thirty seconds, and I made it out just fine.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with bleeding times, all they do is cut your arm and basically see how long it takes for you to stop bleeding. The surgeons have these test performed so when in surgery, if a patient begins to bleed they will know after a certain amount of time if they have fixed the wound or they are still bleeding. Obviously, with brain surgery, this is a necessary component, and since it only took six and a half minutes for me to clot I passed the test with flying colors, and have cleared yet another step for surgery. Although still waiting for some results, I don’t think there should be any reason for the surgery to be postponed, so in less than a week I’ll hopefully be taking the last major step on my way to recovery-surgery.

Sometimes it still feels pretty surreal, and I think I’m still trying to process the fact that I’ll be in Los Angeles in a matter of days. As the weeks building up to this moment seemed to have whisked by me like a holiday break usually does, I’m hopeful that the weeks following the surgery will do the same. I know the process is going to be a challenge and it will be nothing like I have ever experienced, but I believe my concept on the whole idea will keep me from faltering. And after all this time, I think I can finally say I’m ready.

I’ve found that sometimes when we think that we’re waiting for something, it simply isn’t meant to come yet, and other times we’re given something and we think it’s the last possible thing we can handle. The thing about time, though, is that we can’t change it, and we definitely can’t control it. And often, the things that surprise us or the things that we think we’re missing out on actually end up coming at the perfect moment. So yes, time is a strange concept. But in the end, it always has a way of working itself out. I’m not going to let myself get caught up in the minutes.