December 2003

TO: Marjo

FROM: Carlos

Subject: Jaw Operation

Well I knew you would want to know a little more about my ordeal, so here we go. The whole time I wasn’t really nervous until there was one week left. Plus I was home alone that week since my parents were in Houston and California, so I had a lot of time to myself.

Anyway, I was feeling like oh man one week left of freedom, but not really nervous about the actual operation, that didn’t come until the couple of days before. I had to check into the hospital the day before and my parents weren’t home yet so I went and checked in by myself. (with Lorenzo actually)

So I got my own little room and was zooming, my body was really tense and I was talking really fast. I was calling Neto and company and apparently I sounded really nervous. I had to check in a day before for blood tests and all that crap. Plus I couldn’t eat anything after around 9pm. So I was really worried I wouldn’t wake up and that I would die and all this stupid shit that is only stupid now that I’m awake and alive. But so I was really scared and nervous and then two things happened. This friend of mine visited me and she really calmed me down, because she looked even more nervous than me so I found me trying to comfort her.

Plus she got me out of my room and we went outside to have some soup or whatever. So that began the ease. Then I got back to my room and listened to Bill Hicks, this hilarious comic who died a while ago, see if you can download some of his shit, it’s the best. And I listened to that for about 2 hours until I fell asleep from some pill that they gave me. For the nerves and all. So then I wake up at 6 and they are all like “are you ready” and I honestly was as calm as could be, feeling all proud that the fear was gone. Then they wheeled in the huge gurney they were going to wheel me into the operating room with and it all collapsed. All the nerves were back and I was scared. They gave me a blue pill and told me don’t worry. The last thing I remember was getting onto this thing and looking up. Apparently my last words to the doctors were, “When will I be able to drink after this?” It made them laugh, they say.

So black out for what seemed like forever, then I woke up in the emergency room cause of the fact I was out for 8 hours. Why 9? That’s how long it takes to cut up the bone and shit I guess. But I woke up and of course was all like “what the fuck” I had a tube stuck in my left nostril and a catheter in my peehole.

My first thought was complaint, the bed was too small and was killing my back. They changed it, but of course all the beds down here are too small for me. So then I passed in and out of consciousness and I looked on the wall and saw a crucifix. There was a picture underneath it, it was my friend that had visited me the day before. I kind of chuckled inside that she came and visited and put her picture (only with long hair and kind of big) right under the crucifix, since she knows how I feel about all that religious stuff. SO I kept on passing out, no real pain but my ass because of this crappy bed, and my back since I hadn’t moved for so long. Later I would awaken more clearheaded and realize the picture wasn’t of my friend, it was jesus. So you know the drugs I was on were pretty heavy (can I get this to go?).

OK so then the first thing I really remember well was my parents there telling me everything is fine don’t worry, and I’m trying to motion that yes I feel ok. And then I made a face and out of nowhere comes all this vomit. I vomited! It was mostly blood but I panicked, what the fuck do you do when you vomit and your jaw is wired shut!?? The Emergency room guy didn’t even break a sweat, he’s like “that happens” and starts cleaning me up. I swallowed most of it back up.

You don’t feel like you are peeing when you have a catheter in, it just all of the sudden fells up and you’re like “I peed?” So that night I woke up and could have sworn that it was 6am then next day and that people would start showing up and I would get out of there. It wasn’t even 10pm of the previous day. Time, Marjo, it is the slowest fucking thing ever when you are just laying there waiting for it to go by. It’s an awful feeling. Staring at all the shit in the room, feeling the tightness of the jaw, listening to the little machine that measures my pulse.

That was funny, when the guys is like, I’m gonna bathe you now. I was like whatever man, I don’t care, go for it. But then I realize that the “beep, beep” can be heard pretty far, and that this guy starts taking my little skimpy robe off (also too small for me, I stand up and my balls are in plain view) I become aware of the pulse beeps. Will they speed up? What does it mean? I’m not worried about getting a boner since with a catheter it’s basically impossible to even think of getting excited. But the beeps worried me, they kind of accelerated for a bit, but it was because I was holding my breath most of the time. It was more of a wiping. He took a towel and wiped all over (balls included), he said “sorry” when he did the balls.

I was mostly worried about him moving the catheter, it’s like pulling a hose out of my peehole (and you know I know what it feels like to get something jammed in and out of my peehole [clarification: it was an STD exam, negative]). So I stayed there most of the next day, then got transferred back to a room of my own, non-emergency room.

The nurses aren’t really nurses, just maids in nurses uniforms. It’s horrible. They try to be nice, but they just don’t have the training nor the skills to be good nurses. They all want everyone to think they know so much, and that’s their eventual downfall.

I had my IV in and wasn’t ever really hungry. I think it was two days later when things changed. Instead of just passing out a lot and peeing in my catheter and breathing through the tube in my nose (plus an oxygen mask on top), things changed …thursday I think. It started when the doctor told me that we were going to start pulling all this shit out of me. I was like thank got they put it all in when I was asleep cause it looks like it’s gonna hurt. The catheter felt weird, they inject something into it and the ball inside or whatever supposedly shrinks and you just pee the whole thing out. I felt like I peed a gold ball. Yuck. Then the tube up my nose, I figured it was about as long as my index finger and as thick as, well, a straw. NOPE, they start yanking on that thing and saying “relax” and I’m like ok, then this HUGE fucking thing comes out of my nose!!! NO LIE it was like 7 inches long and as thick as about two or three straws! I was like holy shit good thing you didn’t tell me it was that big before, that sucker would’ve stayed in forever! Then the IV, that was no bid deal.

Feeding was a hassle, everyone wanted to be a part of it. All these nurses (guys and girls) would cram into the room and chime in with advice for whoever was injecting food into the side of my mouth. I found the guys more helpful, they were really young and I was curious what their lives were like. Where they were born and how they ended up feeding this kid with the jaw all fucked up with an injection. Curious. And I must say, that no there was no pain, so I can’t have people feeling all sorry for me. The worst of it was being so bored, sleeping being hard, and the weird feeling of having your mouth permanently fixed in a way that it has never been before. That’s about the worst of it.

And now that I’m at home it’s the fact that I have chocolate milk and shit all over my shirt from the feedings, sometimes I try to go too fast. 1 hour is way too long for a meal, come on. Unless it’s a steak with potatoes and gravy and argghhhhhhhh…damn that would be fine right now. The cravings are also horribly torturous. Nate was mildly surprised when I told him I would EASILY pass up a blow job in favor of a cheeseburger. NO QUESTION!! Damn I got to stop talking about food. So far the weight seems to be stable, but I’m hungry most of the time and I expect it to drop considerably.


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