May 14, 2006, 4:14 am

It’s Done: Life Goes On


Would someone tell me why a company for anesthesiology equipment would call themselves “Air Reduction”?

I’m just askin’.


Well she wasn’t male.

And she wasn’t in white.

Tonight Dr. God-the-Surgeon removed a very infected gallbladder from my husband.

Two small stones. I guess with gallstones, it’s like real estate: location, location, location.

She had been up all night last night and at the hospital most of today. Weekend call for general surgery has to suck big time.

She came in ready to do the surgery early because of elevated liver enzymes and an inability to keep hubby’s blood sugar normal, only to discover that he had been receiving an ADA diet and not a clear liquid diet as ordered.

She had to wait until 2100 to begin the surgery.

She’s tiny, she’s tough, she’s all business and I wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end of her wrath.

That was saved for the day nurse whom she called at home after she found out about the diet.

She finished her work at the desk in the recovery room as I joked with my husband. She was exhausted. She wanted to go to bed. She needed to go to bed.

And sometime tomorrow morning she will go to place flowers on the grave of her mother.

You see, Dr. God-the-Surgeon is also human.

But then I knew that all along.

Tonight I’ll say a prayer for her and her family and one of thanks that my husband was in such capable hands.


Sitting at the right hand of our surgeon, more more specifically, at the head of my husband was his anesthesiologist.

How often do you get to talk and joke with the anesthesiologist post op?

He was young (where are all the old doctors these days?) and handsome (they don’t let ugly guys or gals into med school anymore, apparently).

With a friendly concern that was touching to hear (he had just met my husband pre-op), he listed the risk factors that we had already heard along with a nasty triglyceride level and a cholesterol level that needs a date with Lipitor.

He said that my husband could live another five years, “my friend” if you go on as you are, or you can change your lifestyle and live to enjoy your retirement. “Thirty years!”

All said with a wonderful Russian accent.

Now hubby was higher than the proverbial kite. All the potheads in the entire Haight-Ashbury district in 1967, taken at once, were not as high as my husband.

I don’t know how much of the conversation John will remember.

But I will never forget that anesthesiologist.


What this means is that tomorrow my husband and I begin a new lifestyle of healthy choices and excercising together.

I can’t even begin to express my thanks to all of the Emergiblog vistors who left such nice sentiments and best wishes.

My sincere thanks to Amy over at Diabetes Mine who was the first person I emailed when I got home last night in an absolute panic. Your email was the first thing I saw this morning and just knowing you were there helped tremendously.

If you are ever dealing with a patient with new onset diabetes, in addition to having them speak to your hospital’s Diabetes Educator, I would suggest giving them the web address of Amy’s site and the site of the American Diabetes Association.


I am a firm believer (when I can get a grip on myself) that all things work to the good.

Two things that confirmed this belief tonight:

  • If hubby had not developed those two gallstones, he would not have discovered his diabetes. Who knows how long he has had it? As it turned out, it was discovered before his blood sugar reached a dangerous/lethal level. Now we can be proactive and control it.
  • I have a few risk factors myself that hubby has been encouraging me to mitigate and all I could say was “stop nagging me”. Now we can mitigate our risk factors together. And I understand his concern was for my future health and not nagging. And because I know what it is like to be “hounded” over health issues, I will help hubby take control, but I cannot do it for him.

Our house is now an official ADA house.

My teenaged daughter thinks this will help her lose weight.

She’s so fit as a distance runner, I get a full anatomy lesson of the musculature of the legs every time she walks by.

Oh, to be that young again……………

Now, this will be the last post on this family illness that will be on Emergiblog. I have one more post in my head that may touch on it slightly. If I get the urge to write a blog on our experiences with Diabetes as we work on our lifestyle changes, I’ll start another blog.

Maybe I’ll name it after the old Guess Who song, “No Sugar Tonight”!


  • Bardiac

    May 14, 2006 at 7:00 am

    Glad to hear the surgery went well! I hope the new living program goes well for you all, too.

  • Jenn

    May 14, 2006 at 8:49 am

    I’m glad everything went well. And kudos to you and the rest of the family for also following the ADA guidelines. I think that might help more than anything. I don’t have DM, yet, but I do have PCOS with insulin resistance and have to be careful. It’s hard when everyone else is eating all the good stuff and you are stuck with protien.

  • Annemiek

    May 14, 2006 at 9:25 am

    Good luck with the life style changes, and a good recovery to your husband. It is nice to see that you see a positive in a bad situation; the discovery of the diabetes that he would otherwise not know he had, and that you can take action.

  • Rita Schwab

    May 14, 2006 at 11:27 am

    Glad to hear that everyone in the Emergiblog family is doing well. I have every confidence that you’ll be successful with your new lifestyle goals. Does this mean that Diet Pepsi will (at least sometimes) be replaced by water? Couldn’t hurt…

    By the way, perhaps you could name the secondary blog “No Sugar Added – He’s Sweet Enough Already.”


  • NPs Save Lives

    May 14, 2006 at 2:04 pm

    I can totally understand your predicament.. My husband lost his gallbladder the same year that he was diagnosed with diabetes. I’m sure that you’ve read my earlier posts regarding my husband’s really bad health.. My thoughts are with you and yours!!

  • punchberry

    May 14, 2006 at 2:54 pm

    Kim: I am so glad to hear that the surgery went well!!!

  • Susan

    May 14, 2006 at 3:28 pm

    I’m glad he’s okay. And I’m happy to hear you are both on the path to healthy living. Blog about it, please – you may inspire some of us to do the same!

  • Mama Mia

    May 14, 2006 at 7:58 pm

    Excellent plan Kim. Glad things have gone the good way. My continued thoughts for you and hubby as you start your fun new regieme together.

  • Julie

    May 14, 2006 at 11:54 pm

    Just caught up with your blog Kim and am really glad that the surgery went well. I am also really pleased that some good is going to come of knowing that you now know that he isn’t as healthy as he thinks he is and therefore that you both have a chance of getting him healthy. We have recently started eating more healthily and exersising together and it really is great to be able to do that together. Hope he recovers quickly from surgery so you can get to the graduation. Also good luck to your daughter! What a few days you have had!

  • Bob

    May 15, 2006 at 6:49 am

    I’m thinking the “Air Reduction” company name may be (have been?) something related to air liquefication (that is, cryonics). Y’know, chill the air to make it liquid, then distill it to separate out oxygen, etc., with the oxygen being the part of most interest to anesthesiology.

    And I echo everyone else’s well-wishing!

  • ThirdDegreeNurse

    May 15, 2006 at 3:04 pm

    Well wishes from me, too. I believe you can do it! Sad to say, my late hubby c/o me nagging about smoking but he didn’t quit till the minute he got the positive biopsy for cancer. Don’t let that happen in your house!

    Glad your hub found out about the DM before it got out of hand.

  • ltaylor

    May 15, 2006 at 3:05 pm

    Kim – I can somewhat relate to what you are going through. My hubby went in for what he thought was back problems…I was sure it was cardiac and I was right. He turned 47 in the hospital. We went from talking about making many lifestyle changes to actually having to make them overnight. I went home to get our things for the hospital stay and I made one big sweep through the pantry, fridge & freezer – throwing out all questionable killer items. The next time I went home I dusted off the treadmill and moved it into the living room…does it match the decor? Heck No!! Does it get used daily now that it is no longer tucked in corner in another room?? Heck Yes!!!

    My prayers for your DH speedy recovery and that you will not have to beat him into submission. Going to the ER for Gallstones is much easier to explain than going because you ate a stick of butter on a loaf of cinnammon raisin bread (or insert favorite bad food choice here)and your wife beat you with the broom (or insert nearest weapon of choice here)

    Take care – Wishing you peace & patience. L

  • mary

    May 15, 2006 at 3:51 pm

    Good heavens!! I don’t read my favorite blogs for a couple of days and jeez. So glad it all worked out, and many of us should be joining you and your husband, too (myself included—I do expect to reach retirement age myself in fourteen years, but who’s counting?).

  • Jodi

    May 15, 2006 at 9:10 pm

    So glad it went well. Did they let ya’ll have a picture of the gallbladder? Mine
    Maybe his slight inability to handle fats will help with his new ADA diet.
    Splenda was a Godsend for me when I was pregnant with GestDM. Try it! You can even cook with it.
    Ya’ll have a lot of cheerleaders out here!

  • kenju

    May 15, 2006 at 9:20 pm

    Never thought I’d say “Thank God for gallstones” but I guess that’s your new mantra too. Glad the surgery went well and I will keep hoping that you and hubby stay on your new diets.

  • BigMamaDoc

    May 16, 2006 at 1:24 pm

    My mom is a diabetes educator. She would be very happy indeed to see you attacking this thing head on. By the way, thanks for your kind comments on my recent battles.

  • Flea

    May 16, 2006 at 1:38 pm

    I wish him a full and speedy recovery. And I’ll think he’ll actually get to like being healthier!



About Me

My name is Kim, and I'm a nurse in the San Francisco Bay area. I've been a nurse for 33 years; I graduated in 1978 with my ADN. My experience is predominately Emergency and Critical Care, and I have also worked in Psychiatry and Pediatrics. I made the decision to be a nurse back in 1966 at the age of nine...

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