She started hemorrhaging. They had to stop the surgery. They only got three of the five cancerous lymph nodes out. The other two were too close to blood vessels, and she had been given blood thinner, and she had already bled all over the damn place apparently, and lost so much blood that she was in danger of dying.
So she’s out; she is alive; she is talking and mentally composed. She is at her house laying around in bed all day eating soup and popsicles* and watching HBO Go. The three cancerous lymph nodes being gone is good; it isn’t some bullshit where the surgery was all for nothing. Three fifths of the cancerous mass being gone, like some slave voting compromise. The remaining two they will continue to try to shrink with radiation. Which you should read in the tone of Marvin Gaye singing in “What’s Goin’ On.”
I fucking told her going in: don’t hemorrhage. You’re gonna get on that operating table and you’re gonna want to hemorrhage all over the place, but don’t do it. They need to keep your blood in your veins to finish the operation. And of course, what’s the first fucking thing she does. Stubborn.
But also, if I were a doctor: I would study veins and lymph nodes and stuff before performing surgery on these things. I would figure out in advance if one of the cancerous lymph nodes was right near the carotid artery and then maybe I would come up with some alternate strategy of cutting into it where you did not nick the carotid artery and cause the blood-thinned patient to bleed out and almost die. I would have taken care to make sure that my medical training had included the study of anatomy, you know. And I wouldn’t have just surfed porn on my laptop during class that day. I would have really paid attention; it’s some serious shit. But I don’t want to tell anybody how to do their job.
Anyway. Nikol is alive; the cancer isn’t gone, but she didn’t bite it in the OR either. It sucks when your best friend is having eight hour surgery and you’re at work and you get a text saying she’s bleeding out and they stopped the surgery, and then you have to respond to a bunch of bullshit work emails.
I had to call her dad. Her foster dad, or some guy– I don’t know, her family is really complicated; it’s hard to keep track of who is biologically related and who is from one of the many foster homes she was raised in, presumably one of the few where she wasn’t serially raped and sex trafficked since she still talks to them. Anyway, the guy she calls her dad, who was so sweet and whose heartbreaking concern really earned him the title– I called him and told him what was going on; the first time we’d ever spoken, and he was so Midwesternly polite, you know. He thanked me so much for calling to tell him that Nikol had hemorrhaged in the OR and almost died but she was out now, although they didn’t get all the cancer. He said thank you so much and I just reflexively said “my pleasure.” Like when your waiter says “enjoy your meal” and you say “you too.” What a jackoff I am.
Oh, and her hair looks really good now. A really cute length.
* They are special popsicles that her son makes for her out of water, lemon juice and hot sauce. This is the kind of shit she eats, probably because she was beaten and molested. She loves pain now. I courteously cleaned up her used popsicle stick and then took a piss, and the hot sauce got on my dick, an I had to pull over at a gas station on the way home and buy a pint of milk and duck into the bathroom and pour the milk on my dick.