The day of surgery started with a call from Meridian Park Hospital in Tualatin. They called to tell us that everyone in "short stay" was ready and that we should arrive as soon before our 10:30 appointment as was possible. We threw our computer, our clothes, and ourselves into the car at about 9:45 AM.
When we arrived at the hospital, we were grateful to find a shiny BMW pulling out of the nearest spot to the door. We left half of our stuff in the car and found our room in short stay: A229. The nurses began immediately with injections, IVs, pills, gowns, socks, paperwork, bracelets, and stickers. It seemed like every specialist in the hospital swarmed the room.
"Hi, I'm Dr. ----. I'm the ----ologist."
"Nice to meet you. That's my wife in the center of the crowd--she's the patient."
"Oh, well, this is just gonna take one second. I've gotta check ---- with ----."
Pastor Gleason, Mom, Dad, Aunt Edie and family, and Uncle Gene and Aunt Ida arrived at the same time as the plastic surgeon, Dr. Elisa Burgess. By the time all was finished it was 11:45. We were waiting for Dr. Shawn Morgan, the surgeon.
Dr. Morgan--the surgeon who looks more like a mechanic--filled the door of the short stay a half an hour later.
"Hey, Man. Sorry I'm late. I had to do a hernia." (Did I mention he also talks like a mechanic?)
"Oh yeah? How did that go?"
"Good. Thanks." (I love this guy.)
Dr. Morgan promised he and Dr. Burgess would take good care of Anne-Marie and signaled the nurse to unlock the bed wheels. I gave my wife a hug and kiss thirty seconds before I watched her disappear down the endless, stark-white hallway.
I'll admit that I nearly broke down and wept.