I’m a mom of two children under three, so I need a break from time to time. Any break will do. I recently spent a day in the hospital for a minor surgery. It was...wonderful. Here are nine ways my hospital visit was as good as a fancy getaway.
I was child-free for eight hours. No nursing, no temper tantrums, no toddler hanging off me like a human jungle gym. This was the first time in almost five months that I was away from my children for more than three hours (which, coincidentally, was also for a related hospital visit). Bliss.
Much like prepping for vacation, I pampered my body to make it look its best. I gave myself a fresh coat of hot pink nail polish on my toes, I pumiced, waxed, shaved, exfoliated, blow dried, flat-ironed, and gave myself a full face of makeup – all in preparation of at least half a dozen strangers seeing me nearly naked on the operating table. I was probably one of the freshest looking patients they saw all day, if I do say so myself.
I got to spend the day wearing soft, non-restrictive clothing and a pair of little blue slippers. I didn’t even have to wear a bra.
I napped leisurely and guilt-free for hours. OK, so maybe getting knocked out and intubated isn’t everyone’s idea of napping, but it’s very rare that I sleep for longer than a two-hour stretch at a time.
Someone else brought me food. I was forced to fast for the morning (boo), but by 10 a.m. I was being fed by a lovely nurse named Pam who so kindly hooked me up to a delicious looking IV and took care of my nutritional needs for a few hours. And after the surgery was complete and I finally woke up from my “nap,” they even brought me ice-cold ginger ale to sip at my leisure.
I sunggled under heated hospital blankets that rival even the highest end hotel bedding. Seriously, have you ever had a nurse show up with an armful of these beauties? I can’t fully explain how wonderful it is. I felt like a giant baby as they swaddled me in a piping hot blanket in the middle of the frigid hospital room. They brought fresh ones a few hours later, too!
I read trashy celebrity magazines for hours straight. Don’t judge. I actually brought a copy of The Great Gatsby to reread in anticipation of the upcoming movie release, but I wasn’t allowed to have any personal belongings in the waiting room, so I worked with what was available. And it was awesome. I even got my first glimpse of Kate’s baby bump, via a gossip magazine. I was irritated that she made pregnancy look so good.
My husband and I got some much needed alone time. He drove me to the hospital and hung out with me for a few hours until I was taken away. We played games on his iPhone and shared a few good jokes and just relaxed. He even skipped his ritual Tim Horton’s coffee stop on the way to the hospital in sympathy to my pre-surgery fasting. And when it was all done and a hospital volunteer wheeled me to the waiting area, he was ready with a warmed up minivan and steaming bowl of soup to tide me over until dinner.
Everyone treated me with such tenderness when I got home; it was as if the vacation wasn’t quite over. Dinner was ready for me courtesy of Grandma and afterwards, I didn’t even have to clean up or put anything away. I was in bed by 9 p.m. and my husband handled the first wake up call around midnight. Even my kid seemed sympathetic and only woke up once for a feed after that! And get this – I slept in until 6:30 a.m. Yes, SLEPT IN! No wake-up call at 5 a.m. for this mommy.
While I enjoyed my much needed break, here’s hoping that my next vacation involves swimsuits and wine instead of hospital gowns and IVs!