Butterflies, Lary tubes and Frankenstein!!

So hello again from the land of laryngectomy and Worcester Hospital, it’s a little late for this blog but unfortunately been otherwise engaged 😂

My op was Tuesday morning(2/7) had to be at Worcester at 7.15, so left sunny Hereford feeling a little uncomfortable with my wonderful wife Ann and her lovely sister who drove us.

First on list so straight into gown and socks and ready to go – 3 surgeons and 2 anaesthetists( a new joke perhaps). Unfortunately my problem is that my anatomy is not conducive to normal airway in mouth( keeps me breathing whilst asleep) so I have to have one up my nose – no problem I here you say !! But they put it up when not asleep definitely not cool😔

Operation was due to last between 5 & 10 hours, thanks to brilliant team was all done 4 – nose disconnected, voice box a goner, they also did a radical neck dissection which removed the naughty nodes in my neck – I did mention they need to rename things so it doesn’t scare the shit out of patients.

Arrived back on head and neck ward at 2.00 looking like Frankenstein, but I thought looking really cool🤔 Ann came over with Fel a close friend who has been a rock to us both, and so the fight has started.

I woke up later after Ann had gone to meet my first wonderful nurses, they are an absolute blessing-unfortunately my first action when I awoke was to throw up everywhere due to the feed-happy days. The rest of that day was spent asleep with the best headache ever, but basically in the land of nod.

I never had a bad instance with my voice I didn’t try to shout and found I couldn’t, I didn’t get angry , I seemed to accept it immediately, do not ask why but I like to think I am reasonably realistic – it’s gone, get on with it.

The following days were mainly spent asleep or coughing, or having various bloods and observations taken, day four my oxygen was reduced to 2 litres and felt as if things were moving in right direction.

I was then met my speech team again, I had already met them first time round with cancer, and they were helping me with mouthing words and that some sounds don’t need a voice box. The example was ‘Butterfly’ so I then practised and found just like a child I could say lots of swear words-twat; dickhead; and fuck were the best – sorry.

Constantly over the 8 days I have been visited by my family and friends this has been a blessing and I am truly humbled by the love and support and gives me the determination to keep smiling so thank you, and all know who you are so am not going to mention everyone.

This was my lovely look after 5 days, the blessing was having my drains removed from the side of my neck, one of my nurse assistants called them my Pravda and givonche bags as I had to carry them everywhere, the removal feels like nothing I have ever experienced before or want to again.

I was then able to walk a little about the ward, and also my flippant sense of humour was coming back much to the joy of everyone😂 The other thing is that I got to know my lary tube a little better – this is the tube which goes into my whole in neck(stoma)to maintain its size and that it doesn’t shrink and has a filter in the end to help moisten and warm up air before it hits my lungs. This has to be removed 3 times a day for cleaning and changing, they are £70 each so you cannot bin them, the single most weird thing is sneezing – it comes out of stoma not my nose – if I miss the act I can take someone’s eye out.

Anyway I am tired now so am signing off next blog will get me up to date if you are still interested 😂 .

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