Operation: Get My Life Back (& My Knee Fixed)

 Well, I survived my surgery. 


I got to the hospital on time & got checked in/taken to pre-op almost immediately. Of course I had to do the required pregnancy test.1  

Eventually, a nurse2 came in to set-up an IV—she only stuck me once, thus allowing her to join my unofficial Hall of Fame—while my nurse3 reviewed my medical history, medications, allergies, and the results of the unnecessary pregnancy test.4 I praised Candi for her achievement and tried to interact with Danielle. I was more calm and relaxed once the IV56 was set up. Danielle said the change in my demeanor after the IV was very noticeable.7 She wasn’t really thrilled, at first, with my mom saying that she was there to mock me while my IV got set up, but my mom explained why she does that.8 But she didn’t need to. 

One big fear down, a couple more to go. 

The antibiotic they used was clindamycin. It’s amazing how my old acne medicine is one of the few antibiotics my atopy-prone body has not declared war on. I guess it’s because it’s not really used that often. Danielle said that typically they’ll give Keflex9 and, if the person is allergic, they’ll use penicillin.10 Or the other way around?  Having a Keflex allergy while having a penicillin allergy isn’t exactly normal, despite their being related. It probably happened in me because of genetics11 and because my first antibiotic allergy was Ceclor, which is related to both Keflex & penicillin somehow. Anyway, Danielle made sure I was not allergic to clindamycin before they officially hooked it up. 

When the anesthesiologist came in, he insinuated that I wasn’t allergic to the medicines I listed. That changed as I explained the reactions.  Each person who reviewed my list, including him, did not understand why I listed my orange juice allergy12 under the section for food allergies. Hmm. I wonder why a person would list a food allergy as a food allergy. 

Maybe because:

Oranges and other fruits contain proteins that are chemically similar to pollen; eating these can cause itching and irritation of the mouth in certain people, many of whom also happen to be allergic to pollen… (via Newsweek)

That article points out that orange juice allergies can be worse for asthmatics because of our already inflamed airways. There are also some who believe that orange juice allergies can be a result of salicylate (aspirin-relatives) allergies/sensitivities.13 Basically, this orange juice allergy stuff is serious as fuck. 
But I digress…again. 

Before taking me to the OR, I was given a dose or so of Versed, aka midazolam.14 In some people,15 there is an unexpected reaction16 and medical professionals can go into denial mode over it because it is pretty much the opposite of what the drug is meant for.

Eventually, I was rolled off to the OR. Special latex precautions were taken, which was expected, and was the reason my surgery took place at the hospital instead of an outpatient surgery facility. I think I was the last surgery on the schedule and there may have been a good reason. The anesthesiology team consisted of the anesthesiologists ans 2 nurse anesthetists—the 3 were monitoring me for allergic/adverse reactions. Seriously. The patient board in the OR also mentioned I had multiple allergy issues.17

Eventually, the sleepy-time doc gave me the propofol and I zonked out. My parents said the surgery took five minutes and that my orthopedist, who I saw one time today…before the surgery, said my meniscus and fat pad were fine, but that the debris in my patella was made of bone flakes and that I definitely have arthritis. He also said I need to start exercising and trying to lose weight. I got pissed when he said that because this particular doctor always dismisses that I do exercise. I told him with a previous injury that I was injured while exercising. I told him this issue became noticeable while exercising.

As for trying to lose weight?

I’ve lost around 27% of the weight I wanted to lose. I’ve lost 32% of what I need to lose to reach a healthy weight. I would have lost more if my knee hadn’t been fucked up since Spring. Being fat doesn’t mean I should be dismissed like this. 

Pretending like all of this is due to weight and weight alone is also bullshit.18 I’m having a hard time believing that the meniscus and fat pad1920 are totally okay, given the symptoms. I just think he’s used this to tell me that he thinks poorly of me for my weight. And that’s pathetic and superficial crap. If he’d ever bothered to listen to me, he could have come to that conclusion on his own. 

After surgery, I started talking like crazy21 to the nurses in the recovery section, including Danielle, who was literally keeping watch over me afterward. She got so busy talking to me that she almost forgot to give me a dose of Fentanyl.22 And she almost forgot once again with my Demerol dose. At first, I wondered if she wanted to give me the pain relief injections because she thought it would shut me up. It just made me worse. It wasn’t long before I was getting discharged; we did have to wait for a drug-induced23 vertigo spell to pass. 

I also had the lovely experience of a different nurse doing a bad job of removing my IV. She was trying to take the tape off without tearing my skin. I would be grateful for that effort except that, while doing that, she ended up removing the catheter24 rather violently. It started bleeding. A lot. As I mentioned earlier on Instagram, removing an IV so violently is not only painful and dangerous to people with conditions like Ehlers-Danlos or any other chronic health issues, it is painful and dangerous for able-bodied, healthy folks, too. And if you factor in the time it takes to stop the bleeding, taking it out that way costs you more time. Be careful with IVs.


As you have probably figured out, the IV bleeding finally stopped & it didn’t kill me. Yay!

Anyway, it’s been several hours since I got home. I’m still pretty wired and may be so for several days to come. 

  1. I chose to avoid going to the bathroom upon waking to make sure I could take the test. If I hadn’t, they might have refused to do the surgery. They almost refused my endoscopy-colonoscopy procedures a few years ago because I didn’t have enough urine to take the test. Part of that lack of pee was from the dehydration that resulted from prep. 

  2. Candi 

  3. Danielle 

  4. Danielle apologized for that multiple times, especially since she knew I was taking hormonal birth control. It’s funny how the nurses who wanted dehydrated, virginal me to take the pregnancy test a few years ago for my endoscopy-colonoscopy combo didn’t apologize for demanding the test. The one who did when I had my D&C and hysteroscopy did. 

  5. Candi gave me lidocaine to ease some pain, which isn’t the greatest to use in Ehlers-Danlos patients. 

  6. The IV itaelf was quite painful. 

  7. She understood what it was like to be a hard stick. The last time she had an IV, it took ten times. I almost asked her if she was some long-lost cousin. 

  8. I’ve repeatedly mentioned the hard stick issue. I used to, as a small child, get blood work done a lot and had IVs started, and there were always vein issues—including when, as a preschooler, I had blood work done using a vein in my foot. I also was admitted to the hospital for asthma issues and the nurses setting up my IV wouldn’t let my mom come in while they did it. I kicked and screamed and cried and they just were mocking and not compassionate. I remember that as one of the few truly dissociative moments I’ve ever experienced. As a result, I was terrified of needles until I was a teenager. My mom—who I get my bad veins from, so she’s got an idea of how terrifying and painful vein stuff can be—could keep me calm by telling jokes. The calmer I was, the easier it was to hit the veins. It’s amazing how that works. 

  9. My latest antibiotic allergy. 

  10. It was my fourth antibiotic allergy. 

  11. Thanks, Nana & Mama. They had allergies to antibiotics, pain killers, and anesthetics, too. 

  12. I vomit, have uncontrollable stomach pains, and have asthma flare ups whenever I ingest it. This even happens when it’s an ingredient in a dish. I have to check ingredient lists closely for it & caffeine, or related products. 

  13. Guess what over the counter pain medication Nana has an anaphylactic reaction to when she takes it?! Even in the form of cream for arthritic joints. 

  14. Midazolam is a benzodiazepine that is used in lethal injections to calm the convicted individual so they don’t panic as they are exposed to other drugs that stop their hearts or suppress their breathing. 

  15. Children, some death row inmates who were executed in the recent past, and me… 

  16. They don’t fall asleep or stay asleep; hyperactivity & its short-term sedative effect is actually well-documented. 

  17. There were also my bright protocol bracelets. 

  18. Yes, my weight contributes. That’s part of why I was trying to exercise. 

  19. He’s never acknowledged that the MRI wasn’t the “nothing is wrong here” situation he has suggested. Maybe he doesn’t realize I’ve seen the results. 

  20. It was swollen enough yesterday that there was a lump right over it. 

  21. I think if I ever imbibed, I would be a chatty drunk. More specifically, a chatty, giggly drunk. Alas, I shall never know, unless you count my drunk-like state when dehydrated and my intoxicated state on anesthetics and pain killers. 👋🏻, booze, I think we could have had some fun, bur jt apparently wasn’t meant to be. 

  22. She told me I’d already had two other doses of it. 

  23. There were quite a few meds in my system. 

  24. The tubing that goes under the skin & into the vein that connects it to the IV. 

Daily Debate: Oct. 6, 2015

Whether or not we openly acknowledge it, voter suppression still goes on in the United States. Nine states passed or introduced legislation that could have infringed upon the rights of citizens in 2013; six did so in 2014.

Voter suppression is commonly associated with racism, especially against black people, but it also impacts the elderly, American Indians, students, and people with disabilities. Over thirty states have considered laws that would require voters to present government-issued photo ID to vote and around 11% of Americans do not have that ID, which would place an undue burden on them or would strip them completely of the ability to vote. Other attempts to limit voting include cutting back on early voting and making it harder for people who’ve gone to the wrong precinct to vote.1

Voter suppression is unconstitutional, but some people support it out of fear of voter fraud; it also can gain support because it bills fighting voter fraud can actually sound benign in nature.

What do you think can be done to limit or combat voter suppression? Has your state passed any laws that you think might count as voter suppression? Have you personally experienced voter suppression? Do strict voter ID laws need to exist to protect against voter fraud? Or is voter fraud not a significant enough problem to warrant the laws?

  1. ACLU: 1, 2, 3 

‘Cause It Feels So Empty Without Me

guess who's back, back again - eminem gif

Guess who’s back…back again?

Backstreet's Back

If you said the Backstreet Boys, you are wrong in so many ways.

*NSYNC is here

If you said Dale Jackson, then obviously you’ve been reading my tweets for the past few hours. The man that I have had either blocked or muted for years has once again deemed it necessary to bother me.1 Apparently, people can’t post links to petitions about voter suppression without earning an annoying tweet from the awful and annoying Mr. Jackson.

The “conversation” quickly devolved into him calling me stupid2 and wanting me to prove that he’s a racist. 3 I’m pretty sure that his racism could be inferred by anyone who read his tweets or listened to his talk show. I don’t. I try to pretend like the man doesn’t exist. His talk show makes my anxiety levels go up because it seems like he’s constantly yelling. Despite what some people think, anger and rage are not my cup of tea.

Anyway, Dale and his followers4 seem to think that voter suppression will not happen as a result of Alabama closing 31 of its driver license offices, leaving only 28, because most people get their licenses using other methods. Well, that’s nice, but it’s still possible and any possible injustice is something that people should be alarmed by.5

I'm allergic to bullshit

They, including Dale,6789 also thought that it was super easy1011 to get a free photo voter ID from the state, which I’m guessing is either from willful ignorance or laziness. Either way, I was amazed at how often they got it wrong. I started to write a tweet out to send to one of them, informing them of their ignorance, but it ended up being extremely long. I realized it was actually almost blog post length, so I thought I’d post it here rather than on Twitter or an app for super-long tweets:

If you think you can get a photo voter ID easily in the state of Alabama, you’re wrong.

First of all, you can’t get one if you currently have any other form of recognized (at precincts) state-issued photo ID. If your other ID expires tomorrow, you better have someone bring you to the registrar two days from now. And they may try to convince you to get your license renewed, even if you can no longer drive or cannot afford the fee for the non-driver ID. (Paying to procure an ID for the purpose of voting is a violation of laws prohibiting poll taxes.)

To get the ID, you have to bring your birth certificate to the registrar. No big deal, right? Except that many people don’t have a copy on hand. If you DON’T have one, you’ll need to get one. And to get one, you have to pay a fee. (This falls under the poll tax classification, but you can challenge getting it for yourself & authorize the registrar to get it from ADPH for free.)

Even if you bring every piece of required information with you, there’s no guarantee that they will know what to do with it. I wasn’t the only person who had trouble. Three or four people came in while I waited & got turned away for bs reasons. I almost got turned away for bs reasons & was told I needed to pay for the ID several times before the actual county registrar came in & told them that was unconstitutional.

And you may have difficulty finding the registrar office. I’ve seen several people say, “Just go to the courthouse.” (I thought that was where the registrar in my county was, too. It wasn’t. It was miles away & difficult to find.)

Now once you have the ID, you may end up having other issues. You know how you use a photo ID at medical appointments? Yeah, they don’t have to use this one. It actually says you can’t use it for non voting purposes. Some offices & hospitals take this seriously, which makes it difficult to get admitted to a clinic/hospital.

I know that I’ve already shared this story on Twitter and on here. I’m fairly certain that many of those who were claiming that the IDs were easy to get either won’t read this or, if they read it, they will say that it’s lies or exaggerations or something along those lines. Still, I felt it was necessary to refute their ignorance. Personally, I think that a lot of people who think that the voter suppression isn’t going to happen with the office closures or that the IDs aren’t hard to get are just misinformed.12 They may not mean to be ignorant on an issue, but that doesn’t mean that that ignorance shouldn’t be challenged or called out.

But, Dale, if you ever feel the need to contact me again, take this advice:

please find someone else to be creepy with

I’m serious.

please leave

No, really, I am.

do you understand the words that are coming out of my mouth?

Go away. Stay away.

go away

Buh-bye now.

bye bye bye

Edited – 10/06/2015 at 11:58 am to change of to if in this sentence: First of all, you can’t get one if you currently have any other form of recognized (at precincts) state-issued photo ID.

  1. It seems like every year since 2008 or 2009 he shows up. 

  2. Get a new line, Dale. 

  3. Get a new schtick, Dale. 

  4. Remember my lemmings/sheep comment from before? 

  5. Surprise, surprise: Injustice isn’t good. It’s actually really bad and we should try to make sure that it never happens. 




  9. I did acknowledge it a few times. And I told him how he was wrong a few times. He ignored that. 



  12. Not you, Dale. 

#DefundPP is Full of Hypocrisy

Last night, a couple of ladies on Twitter had a whine-fest over my blocking them after I favorited and retweeted these:

They thought that I was the friend of PanchoPanucci, but I simply found those tweets after searching through the #DefundPP hashtag. I favorited and retweeted them because I agreed that there is a good deal of hypocrisy within that movement.

When they found out that I had them blocked before even finding their tweets, they had to throw a fit. How could anyone ever want to block them? They’re just too perfect for that. Clearly, I’m doing something awful to decide that I don’t want to interact with people who I think will only cause drama and spread hate.

I figure that they were upset because they feel that they have a right to be heard by every single person on earth. Just because you have the right to share your beliefs and opinions with the world doesn’t mean that the world will listen to you.

They even had to have their friends come to the rescue.1 It was not at all surprising.

And, of course, supporting Planned Parenthood means I don’t understand what racism actually is, or that a lot of old companies and organizations had ties to various racist groups and regimes. Guess what, folks! Margaret Sanger was not the only racist alive in the 20th Century. There were a lot of them and there were some who had a direct hand in actual atrocities.

That tweet seemed to scare most of them off, but I basically warned off any future comments with:

I hope that maybe they’ll get the message, but I really doubt it.

  1. They were actually encouraging their friends to do this. 

Daily Debate: Sept. 4, 2015

Should Kim Davis, Rowan County Clerk, be in jail for refusing to grant marriage licenses to LGBTQ couples? Was her refusal to do so an example of injustice? Should she be applauded for standing up for what she believes in? Is it hypocritical for her to oppose marriage equality when she has been married four times?

A Whole New Level of Awful Spam

Seriously, this comment was left on my review of For Such a Time by Kate Breslin:

It’s not an easy read, dealing with a dark and hellish time in history, the Nazi occupation of Germany, but it’s a worthwhile and powerful read. Hadassah Benjamin is half-Jewish and believed she’d be protected by her Aryan-like looks; SS Kommandant Colonel Aric von Schmidt is head of the transit concentration camp Theresienstadt in Czechoslovakia.

Getting spam related to the book only makes the book seem more disgusting. And it tarnishes my opinion of spam quite a bit, too. (Not that I was a fan of it either.)

When did spam switch to Christian Inspiration fiction set during the Holocaust? I thought they stuck to drugs and sexual dysfunction.

via Tumblr