Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Tonsillectomy

I am a weirdo nursing student who is intrigued by medical things so this post contains pictures some people my find gross and other things people may find gross.
Read with caution. :)

During Fall of 2012 I was the most consistently sick I have been in my life. Throat infection after throat infection, cold after cold. I tried chalking it up to stress from nursing school or working with kids. But eventually, the doctor at the urgent care clinic started recognizing me and he recommended I see an ENT. In my Health Assessment class one day we were doing throat exams, and I learned my tonsils were huge! And apparently it's not normal to not be able to swallow food easily for months at a time. Go figure. So, over Christmas break I visited the ENT. He recommended I get my tonsils taken out. My tonsils are naturally large, contain many small gaps and grooves called crypts, that bacteria can easily hide in. I've even had tonsil stones before, which is collected food and bacteria that forms in the little pockets and makes a stone. If only they were pearls. Anyway, the general consensus was that my tonsils were a big contributing factor in me getting sick so much. I was nervous as all get out, because I'd never had surgery before. Apparently at the same time, my appendix got jealous and decided it wanted out first. This took up my arranged week off school, so instead of my scheduled February tonsillectomy, I had to push it back to May 8th. I got a cold about May 4th or so, but I went to my pre-op, doc checked me out and cleared me to have the surgery anyway! So I went out and stocked up on goods I thought I may be able to consume in the coming week or so, ate my "last supper" of McDonalds, got very little sleep and woke up at 6:45 to get ready to go to the hospital!

Tonsillectomies are outpatient procedures, so I didn't actually have to go to the "big" hospital, but the Outpatient Surgery Center at Athens Regional. It was in a big old timey house that oddly turned into a hospital setting once you walked back down the hall. I got checked in and taken to my room. The doctor came in and spoke with me as well as the anesthesiologist. He actually had to run immediately out of the room because a patient was having a laryngospasm, so that was a bit unsettling. BUT before he left, he told me the nurse would be in shortly to give me an "IV margarita" and I was quite okay with that!
This is Nicole before Versed.

This is Nicole after Versed.

Happy Nicole!

So after my "margarita" they wheeled me back to the OR. Strangely enough, a nurse or surgical tech one recognized me as I was lying there from working at Pump It Up. After we were all acquainted, the nurse anesthetist put the mask on me for about 15-20 seconds. She took it off for a brief moment and said, "You're going to start to get a buzz" and I replied, "Oh, it's already there!" And I faded off to Neverneverland and said goodbye to these suckers! 

Next thing I know I was waking up in Recovery and being told they not only took my regular tonsils but they took my adenoids too! I'd asked the doctor beforehand if he was going to take both and he said there was probably only about a 10% chance I'd need both taken, because your adenoids usually shrink by adulthood. I guess I had big adenoids too! I was in a little discomfort, but I was given Dilaudid, so I was no where near being in real pain. After I drank some water and came out of the haze for a little bit, they rolled me back into the actual recovery room where my dad was waiting. The nurse kept saying she was so surprised with how well I looked and how good I was doing. My vitals were pretty good overall and I just "looked" really good. Oh what a false sense of hope. Haha. The surgery had gone well, at least. I was doing so well that they discharged me early, around noon. The nurse asked if I wanted my first dose of liquid Lortab, what I'd be on at home. I asked what she thought and she said she thought I didn't look like I needed it. So, I didn't take it. NEVER REFUSE PAIN MEDICINE WHEN GIVEN THE OPPORTUNITY. As I was getting dressed, I felt a little more discomfort. When the nurse was wheeling me down to the car and we were in the elevator, she noticed I was hurting because I wasn't talking at all. By the time we got to CVS and got my medicine and got home, I was hurting pretty bad. They'd given me an ice collar to wear to help with the pain and inflammation so I was steady rotating my ice packs, took my medicine and tried to lay down. I pretty much rested the rest of the day and got on my regular pain medicine schedule! It's pretty crazy that with modern medicine, you can go to the hospital at 7, have body parts removed and be out by noon! 

NEXT TIME: The Recovery!

Monday, October 15, 2012

My Fall Swap Goodies!

Nicole at Flip Flops & Combat Boots hosted the Fall Swap again this year! I jumped on it since Fall is my favorite season and I love swaps! I mailed off my package to my partner, Sam, last week and I got hers this weekend! Here's what I got!

Fall Sprinkles! I told her I loved baking.
Two sets of pens - always come in handy! 
Chocolates - yummy!!
Yankee Candle car hangings - a girl can never have too many smelly goods!
A cute note pad that says "A Latte To Do Today"
Two Coffee Samplers (cinnamon crumb cake and chocolate donut - drool!)
Cute coffee/tea magnets! I also told her I love coffee!! 

So many cute and yummy things! Thanks Sam and thanks Nicole, for hosting! 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Frustration from the day...

There were a few instances that irked me today. And they just all happened to happen in one day, but all were kind of related. I won't go into detail but I will say this:


Seems like common sense, right? You'd be surprised. Sure, things that people do or say can contribute, but ultimately, it's your decision to be happy. You can't rely on someone else to make you happy. Life sucks sometimes and surely it hardly ever goes as planned, but attitude is everything. And standing up for what you deserve. If you're in a crappy situation, moping and whining about it isn't going to change anything. I believe that God has a plan for us, and that he helps that plan move along accordingly, but it's up to us to take action in our lives for the plan to truly work. Do we make bad decisions sometimes? Yes. Do we go against God's plan? Sometimes. But you have to face consequences for that, pick up the pieces, accept responsibility for your actions, don't hide stuff from people and move on. If you're being treated badly, don't stay in that situation. You only have one life and do you want to spend it being miserable? I sure wouldn't. Change is hard but in the end, it's worth it.

This has turned into a big ranty mess, but hopefully you get the point. :)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Thursday is the day!

This Thursday I start Nursing School!! I am SO excited for it. I know this is what I'm meant to do with my life and I've known since I was a tiny kid! Just ask my dad how many times he recorded ER or Rescue 911 for me to watch on Saturday mornings instead of cartoons. I had numerous "doctor kits" and made so many of my relatives play doctor with me...sorry guys!!

But this is real. Do I think it's going to be easy? NO. Am I going to hate life at some point? Probably more than once! But am I ready for this? YES.

As most of you know, it took me quite a while to get into nursing school... But I have been through some trying things this year and I have only God to thank for that. Sure, it was frustrating as all get out reading rejection letter after rejection letter. Giving up on the BSN programs and applying to ADN programs and STILL being denied. With a good, not great, GPA...good TEAS and SAT scores...but...

I don't call it luck that I finally got in. It's no coincidence that I'm going to school in Athens, where I had already made up my mind I was moving back to regardless. AND I am in a BSN program. I KNOW He has a plan for me and I know it will not be easy. I'm kind of getting tired of people saying, "Oh just wait" when I say I'm excited. I know this is not going to come easy to me, but I know in the end it will be worth it. I know I'll probably have to work harder than I ever have before. In the last conversation I had with my mom, I told her I was going to be a nurse and take care of people and make her proud. I will NOT let that promise to her be broken. And I won't let myself down either.

I did not give up after 6 rejection letters, and that's right, I am EXCITED to start on Thursday!! :D

Monday, July 30, 2012


If you know me well, you know that I'm a planner. Yes, I like spontaneity every once and a while, but I usually like to have a general plan for things. Lately, well, most of this year, I've just felt as though I'm being dragged by a rope attached to a speeding car. Pleasant, huh?

With the new school I'm at, it has been obstacle after obstacle getting things done with financial aid. Financial stuff stresses me out more than anything. I guess I'm just lacking stability overall and it's stressing me out.

Nursing school starts August 16th and I'm extremely excited about it. I know it's going to be a lot of work, but it's my passion and I've been waiting years for this. There is a lot to do beforehand, stuff to buy and whatnot, so I've been stressed out about that too!

There are other things that have been relatively stressful/dealing with in general is tough, but I won't go into detail about that here. :/

I feel like pulling my hair out on a daily basis. I know this is a transitional period in my life or whatever, but I just feel so burned out. Bubble baths are seriously my saving graces right now. And Target didn't even have any bubble bath stuff when I went Sunday. :( That's my life. hahaha. Anybody else have any de-stressing tips?

Thursday, May 24, 2012

My Pinterest Disaster

If you know me, you know I love baking. I love decorating cakes. I even do wedding cakes like this!

Photo courtesy of |simple elle| photography.

So surely cookies from Pinterest shouldn't be a problem, right? 


I spent Friday afternoon at Washington Farms picking some fresh strawberries I'd been craving! They're seriously the best strawberries in the world. I won't buy store-bought ones. 

So I was feeling bakey and decided to make something with them! After perusing Pinterest for a little while, I found Strawberry Cheesecake Cookies

Sounds delightful, right? I thought I'd give it a go! 

I always feel so culinarily advanced when I chop fruit and vegetables. :|

The first thing that I thought was odd was that the batter was like...batter. Not cookie dough. But alas, I popped them in the oven, and out they came! ... Looking like bologna. :| 

I have no idea what went wrong. I followed the recipe exactly. And this is what came out.  They didn't taste awful, but weren't very sweet to be a cookie. And they were the WEIRDEST texture. If you know me, you also know that I have a texture issue with food. It was like rubber. So weird. I'm not sure if that was because of the cream cheese in the recipe, but it was weird.

So, I took this as a perfect opportunity to submit my disaster to Craft Fail! They have a Pinterest Projects Gone Wrong page and it's absolutely hilarious. I highly recommend checking it out if you have a funny bone in your body! Perhaps my lovely cookie attempt will be showcased!


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Difference Happy Makes!

So finals have ended and I have moved to Athens! 2012 has proven to be WAY different than I EVER imagined it, but sometimes you have to realize that the plan you have for yourself doesn't exist. The plan that God has for you, does.

Where I'm getting with this, is that in say, November 2011, I thought I was a happy camper. Granted, I hadn't gotten into nursing school yet like I'd hoped, everything else was going well. Then my world flipped itself upside down in a matter of about a month. Many things were shaken - my self-esteem, life plan, finances, living arrangements (I'd never lived alone before), and much more. I believe that throughout it all, I've come out on top of the situation. I feel better about myself physically and mentally. Call it what you will, but I finally got in nursing school. Was something holding me back all along? Or did God know what was coming and who the person I was with really was, and protected me from having all that happen in the middle of nursing school?

It is amazing what letting go of such a negative thing in your life, can do for your life. It sounds cheesy and cliche, but letting the toxic people go makes a world of difference. Like I said, my self-esteem is back, I've met and reconnected with so many people I had let go of, because certain people didn't want me to talk to them. I've realized what I had been missing out on. I am so much more happy now, than I was then, and I had no idea I was even unhappy. When life throws you for a loop, don't think it's the end of the world! You never know when there could be something better in store. :) Looking through pictures, I think I even look happier now! This picture is from September....

And this is me a few weeks ago, going to my first Brave's game!

Do you see a difference? Or am I just being weird? I mean obviously my hair is curly in one and straight in the other, but I think there's a little more of a difference than that! You be the judge!