Here’s the short list of things you need to know about staying in the hospital.
First, never try to buy sensible yet stylish pajamas to wear in the hospital — the day before Valentines Day. Unless you think a black and red lace see-through number is appropriate for the hospital. If you do, it will no doubt, not make you popular with the nurses.
The second thing is this: When going to the hospital, leave all of your valuables and your dignity at home. You won’t be in need of either.
The day after surgery of any kind, the kindly nurses will come to your room with pointed bayonets and poke you until you get out of your bed. And then they will make you walk up and down the hall. This will seem like a really silly thing to do because you won’t even be able to remember exactly where your feet are located. They will tell you that they are making you walk not just because they can and they want to humiliate you, but to encourage the passage of gassage (a new word I just now made up).
At this point you will want to hit the kindly nurses with something, but you have neither the strength nor anything handy that isn’t already plugged into you somewhere. So instead you mutter “damage” under your breath and you go. You go so that they might not poke a hole in your brand new sensible, yet not at all stylish Target Grandma Gown with their bayonets.
To be fair, the nurses promise you that as soon as you can “do this thing which they describe all too technically for my appetite” they will give you some real food, food that you cannot see through! And after several days with no food, this seems a good idea. This food reward system kind of makes you feel a bit like a dog. But like a dog, you are more than willing if it means you’ll get a Snausage or a biscuit or something and that they might then go away and let you nap on a sunshiny spot on the floor without bothering you.
There you will be, wearing your new Target Grandma Gown, bereft of your valuables and dignity, shuffling up and down the hall, taking itty bitty Tim Conway baby steps, hoping and praying to get a food reward for doing something which is considered impolite.
And it is then that you are acutely aware that everyone else is out there doing the same thing. Everyone has the same lofty goal. Passage of gassage.
And that makes it very hard to make eye contact with the other patients you “pass” in the hallway.