Phoenix Surgery Trip #1

In May 2017 we went down to Phoenix Arizona for the hubby’s first portion of his bottom surgery. he did really well and I am very proud of him and who he has become. So this is many of those photos/videos that we took down there.

 

Surgery Trip: Final Day

Well the final day of the surgery came and went. It started out hopeful, the hubby woke up feeling pretty good, the swelling was down, our hopes were up and life was good.

The pool looked beautiful, too bad it was too hot to use it this week.
It was almost 95 degrees when we left at 9:30am

 

The checkout went smooth, took a final couple of pictures and then we went to Dr. Meltzer’s for our final appointment with him and Dr. Ley. It went very well, both doctors thought the hubby was looking very good for the time in healing he had. It was about now that being up and moving for the first time in almost a week, he was feeling sort of rough.

so very tired, and sore.

Once he was given the full approval by both doctors we headed to what would be the trial for the day, our flight home. We arrived almost three hours early just in case. In that time we encountered the following issues that started by dropping the car off at Alamo. It seemed to take forever, then it was a long ass walk for the husband over to the bus, then to the terminal. Especially with his need to utilize the restroom frequently due to spasms from the surgery, and his first time walking in a week it was so rough for him, I felt really bad.

that car rental building is huge

Once we arrived at security things just went downhill from there. We got pulled over for TSA inspection. We forgot in the journey to the empty his water bottle, and of course the couple in front of us threw a fit and because of that fit, they got hauled to the side and inspected by the officers. The TSA agent behind the scanner then seemed to pick out the next three groups in retaliation, which included us and two people in wheel chairs. All of us got scanned, and thats where the TSA agent found our water bottle and we had to throw it away. It wasn’t a big deal, but we lost a nice $14 water bottle because of that dick.

There was a lot of waiting, so caffeine was in order.

We then arrived at the gate and waited almost two hours, to find out our flight got moved to a different gate. When they landed they couldn’t board because they had to wait for maintenance to refill an O2 canister for a medkit. AN HOUR LATER they announced we would be almost 90 minutes late boarding. I don’t blame the pilot/crew, they were arguing with maintenance over getting it done quick enough, but damn it sucked.

This was how we felt for that time.

Once we got on to the plane (over 90 minutes late) we settled into a super hot plane that had been sitting on the tarmac in 107 degree heat. Evidently the battery used to power the AC when the plane was powered down was missing, so there was no AC when we got on board. Poor hubby was suffering really bad, all of this, plus the exertion had hit him hard, also his pain meds had worn off.

Yes, we stared at this plane for over 90 minutes so they could figure out how to fill an O2 canister right.
Stuck in a hot plane, for another 20 minutes.
Just starting to move along the runway.

We flew back to Seattle, with W and I watching Cuthroat Island on his iPad. It was a great distraction, and nice to bond with the hubby even when everyone else was around us. We landed after having a semi-decent cold dinner.

Arriving in Seattle, how we have missed those trees.
upon takeoff we did get to see downtown Phoenix.

Once we landed, we immediately found a cab available (Lyft had too long of a wait, and I won’t give a dime to Uber). The cab took us home, but it also didn’t have AC on and we almost died in that car from heat stroke (ok, that may be hyperbole, but you will never get me to admit it).

Once we got home, we had to spend about 30 minutes with the cat, he thought we had abandoned him. He hadn’t gone without both of us for that long ever. However, he was quick to fall back in love with us. While W bonded with the cat, I went and got us some Panda Express, because dear god I am not cooking when it was almost 8pm and we were exhausted.

Someone missed us.
Didn’t take long to get better.
Then it was a journey of food.

We ended up the night in our bed for the first time in 9 days. It was glorious, although the trip itself was definitely worth it as well. Also, the hubby and the cat spent some important time together.

The hubby and cat are one.

How does Phoenix rank for LGBTQA Experience?

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I have to admit it, right now my experiences in other cities dealing with the LGBTQA thing hasn’t been super good. Philadelphia was good, Denver kind of sucked, Atlanta really sucked, so coming to Phoenix I was pretty sure it would be the same.

It wasn’t, overall it was a good experience, barring one funny negative experience that really wasn’t negative.

Our arrival in Phoenix was marked by a rare homophobic event. We were in line at Alamo Car Rental, and ahead of us we watched a couple get harassed by an Alamo agent. He was pushing the “walk away” insurance, and all the extra things. He was pushing it hard enough that it made the rest of the line nervous.

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It was our turn, as we stepped up I braced for the selling pitch. He began a long spiel of why we needed the walk away insurance, that Arizona law lets them claim for lost days if the car was damaged, etc etc. It was then my wonderful husband spoke up and asked me a question, but used the term “sweetie” for me.

The guy froze, his head went back and forth between us, and without any further mention he has me sign off the contract and we walk away without him saying a word. So while it sucked he obviously had a problem that two guys were together, it worked in our favor and the spiel stopped.

i-hate-the-word-homophobia

Our next encounter was at the Scottsdale’s Museum of the West. Once again most of the staff were older people, so we were prepared to get a hard time. When our tour guide Judith arrived to give the tour, my fears blossomed. She was an older, conservative appearing woman.

However, she realized fairly soon into the tour (followed by a second tour for a different subject) that the hubby and I were together. Instead of any homophobia, she just talked to us even more. She seemed overjoyed that we liked listening to the tour, and wanted to know the history. It was definitely a great experience, and Judith is a great lady.

Dr. Meltzer’s office of course is super accepting, so we don’t need to go into that, but the Greenbaum surgical center was an unknown. However we arrived there and ALL of the staff were great, accepting of me arriving at any time day or not to visit the hubby. At no point did I not feel welcomed. It was impressive.

The rest of the time there was spent mostly in the hotel room, so the only other people we really saw were the hotel staff and they didn’t blink an eye at us. I don’t know if they were ok with us, but they kept their professional cool if they did.

That means Phoenix ranks a close second behind Philadelphia in my experience in accepting LGBTQA. I am not addressing the governmental/legal standpoint of transgender people here, just my experience with individuals

Of course I am posting this Sunday, a day early from our trip ending, hopefully that won’t change in the next day.

Surgery Trip: Day 6, 7 and 8

I am posting this as a combined post for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. That is because all we are doing is huddling in the hotel room, hubby is sleeping a lot and we are just waiting for the healing.

I did end up going out to get him food in the 105 degree heat, yes that is how much I love him :).

So all I really have are a few pictures to share.

Friday Morning, someone is sleeping.
Panera bread, so different looking, still so tasty.
More Panera
Friday night was rough for ghost
Saturday quest for food for hubby.
the heat sucked
Saturday night is still not good for Ghost.
Sunday morning

There we go, that was the boring three days. More to come

Surgery Trip: Day 5

Day 5 was relegated to just a few things due to the hubby getting out of the surgical center.

I woke up fairly early and was tired but happy. I was excited to bring him back with me today. I wasn’t up very long before the hubby was chatting at me on iMessage. We both have been missing each other so I wanted to get into the hospital early to talk and hang with him until he checked out.

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I found the hotel pretty this morning, but I couldn’t tell you what color that is. So here is a color photo for you!

On my way to the surgical center I decided I wanted to try a local coffee shop, I asked Wolsey if he wanted some and he said no. It looked a lot like a coffee shop in Seattle. The name was Echo Coffee, and while I won’t say it “wowed” me with the coffee, it was acceptable (if not quite hot enough).

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God I am a coffee snob.

When I got to the surgical center I found the hubby gossiping to the nurse. He was telling the nurse about the incident that occurred in Philadelphia, between me and a “barista”. It wasn’t bad, but it was pretty funny.

When I was in Philadelphia for work training,  I went to this small bodega (really small) that sold coffee. I asked for a large cup of black coffee and they handed it to me. I took a sip, and before I could even think about it I had said “NOPE!” and in one motion handed it back to the cashier. It had to have been on the burner for hours.

It was a horrible burnt coffee. I feel I wasn’t being picky, it was just foul. The cashier seemed confused on why I didn’t like the coffee. Before I could say a word, one of the other people in my training in Philadelphia said without prompting, “Oh he is from Seattle” as if that was all that was needed.

The weird thing is the cashier gave me my money back, apologized and when I came in later that morning had fresh coffee. I still felt bad I had said nope and handed it back to them before I had even consciously registered it.

I met with the hubby and he was in his normal good spirits again.

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When I say good spirits, that means in his mode of “fuck you for taking a picture” look 🙂

The rest of the day consisted of me going back home, because they weren’t ready to release him, then coming back to the hospital and talking to the doc. He was less interested in talking about the hubby’s surgery and more about bicycling in Phoenix 105 degree weather. That is a good sign that the hubby is doing great.

We eventually got checked out of the surgical center, grabbed some fast food and the hubby waddled into the room and crawled in bed. I eventually ended up joining him, and for the first time in a very long 56 hours, I got to lay beside the most important person in the world.

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Yep, that is him on the left, me on the right. I am just happy to be there.

The rest of the day and evening consisted of hanging around the room. The next few days will probably not have much happen as he lays down and heals.

I am so damn happy to have him back. I don’t think I could explain enough.

Surgery Trip: Day 4

Day 4 has come and gone and it was less exciting then other days.

The morning started out bright, sunny and warm. I believe it was 79 degrees when I went to visit the hubby in the morning around 6am. I know it was pretty, and I can tell there should be color there, but unfortunately for me it is pretty grey. However, for your enjoyment the photo is color.

At 79 degrees, too damn warm at 6am.

Today was fantastic. The hubby was rested up a bit more, he was feeling pretty good and was more talkative. He still occasionally drifted off, but we spent a lot of time on and off. I ended up going over I think it was four times. I would stay for an hour or two, come back to the hotel room. I would have stayed longer but I think I was having heat issues, it is too damn hot.

He was in pretty good spirits, must still be sick 😉

I went and picked up some lunch/dinner between third and fourth visit. Wolsey had mentioned people don’t buy ice cream and go home with it when they eat out, that it melts too soon. I will be honest, I thought that was bullshit, so I went and ordered two cheeseburgers and a small shake from McDonalds. I was in an air conditioned car (that was chilly), went through drive through and went straight home. The shake was in good shape when I stopped at the hotel. I got out and walked about 40 feet to the door to inside the hotel, then another 100 feet, I  got back to the hotel room and it was completely melted. I had been proven wrong, and hubby was completely right.

Torie did feed Ghost tonight as well, she sent a picture, evidently tonight was not as good. We have five more nights to go, but he will be ok, probably just a little feral. I am grateful that Torie is doing this, he would have been so much worse in a kennel.

So damn fragile.

I collapsed in bed and napped a little. Then went back and visited him for the final time. I got back and was anxious that he wasn’t there so I did some Order of Battle let’s play (military strategy game). I then crawled in bed and was completely exhausted.

Oh, and I was awoken by HBO playing Crimson Peaks, and one of the spirits was screaming, ya that wasn’t fun.

Surgery Trip: Day 3

Today is S-Day, Surgery Day. Wolsey and I didn’t sleep much at all overnight, between his surgery prep and general anxiety we both were a bit on edge. Oh, did I forget to mention that at 1am our fire alarm began beeping, signaling it was out of battery. Fortunately Wolsey took the lead and fixed it by taking the alarm down (after contacting the desk).

We were up at 0415 and nope, we weren’t feeling any better than 1am. We gathered our clothes together, got dressed and headed out to Greenbaum Surgery Center at 0500. It was completely empty outside. If this was Seattle the roads would already be busy, but everything was empty.

He is not happy this morning.
On our way to surgery.

We arrived to the dark surgery center and sat there watching conservative local news for about 20 minutes. It was then that Wolsey checked in, signed off the paperwork and got ready for surgery. I have to say the receptionist was absolutely the most supportive receptionist I have seen. It was very reassuring.

waiting in the dark.
Checking in to surgery.

We sat for awhile, watching horrible news, surfing the net, until they came out and asked Wolsey back. He disappeared for about 30 minutes when they came out and got me to come back. I sat with him for awhile, got to see Dr. Webb, and Wolsey’s anesthesiologist (sorry I don’t remember his name). Finally I got to meet Wolsey’s nurse, a great older man who was joking about his husband (I believe his name was Jeff).

There he is waiting for surgery.

I left, went home and ate breakfast. Eventually I was heading out to go see a movie at 10am when I got a call from Jeff saying Wolsey had successfully made it through the hysterectomy, oophorectomy, and vaginectomy with no problems at all. All that was left was medioplasty. This meant he might be out before the movie was over, so instead I swung by Arizona Territory, a souvenir store and picked him up an Arizona souvenir spoon and an Arizona Ranger badge.

It was hours of waiting for him to get out of surgery. Eventually I got a call that he was out and in recovery. Instead of going directly there (well I went there and found he couldn’t have visitors) I went and had a nice lunch at the local Denny’s. I haven’t been in a Denny’s in years, and the last two times sucked, but this was like the Denny’s from my teen years and was worth it.

I finally got back to the hospital and he was in his room. He was incredibly smiley, still drugged but happy to see me. He was in great shape and between falling asleep he would chat with me. After about an hour and a half I left him so he could fully sleep. I went back to the hotel and laid in bed waiting to fall asleep, I would go into see him as soon as I was up and moving. Damn even one night away from him is hard, tomorrow night will be twice as hard.

Hubby and his signature hand move.

Oh, and Ghost had eaten his food yesterday so when our friend came over she found him again not too keen on her being there. I feel bad for him.

Such a fragile creature

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