I went into hospital in the afternoon of 31st July. I was met by a receptionist just inside the entrance and she checked my identity, asked if I had any dietary or religious preferences. There was a funny moment when she asked if I wanted a visit from a minister. What a way to install confidence!
On the ward, I had visits from the anaesthetist, a lady from the cochlear implant centre and my surgeon. The anaesthetist explained the process of going to sleep and checked if I had any allergies etc. As I had anaesthetic previously with appendicitis, I knew what to expect.
The lady from the cochlear implant centre brought instruction manuals for my Cochlear speech processor and remote control for me to read through and explained the switch on process to me. Much of the information she gave me I already knew through undertaking research and speaking to other implantees. I told her all about my blog and she took a note of it, so hello if you are reading!
Lastly my surgeon came and checked how I was feeling. He explained what would happen during surgery including that my hair would be gelled up into a funny hairstyle. I’m so vain, he laughed at my expression! He drew an arrow on my neck to indicate which ear would be implanted and asked me to sign a consent form. I asked if the implant would be ‘high up’ on my head but he reassured me it would be quite low.
There was another girl on my ward who had just had her operation. She spent most of the day either sleeping or being sick. This really worried me but I should emphasise everyone recovers differently.
All the staff on the ward were excellent. They showed me their name badges, wrote things down if necessary, made sure to face me etc. One male nurse was very funny at dinner time. He showed me all the dinner options with a grand flourish – lifting the lid off every option and going ‘ta dah!’. He also put on a jokey huffy demeanor when I gave most options the thumbs down. I am such a diva patient!
I was allowed to have both my Ipad and Kindle with me so I was able to keep myself distracted and keep in touch with my family and friends. I didn’t sleep much that night and I was told I would be taken down for surgery at 8.30am. I was not to eat or drink after midnight.
On the right is a photo of me leaving to go to the hospital – and wearing my hearing aid for the last time.
More photos and info to come!