Today I spoke for the first time since February 12th. Technically that’s not true since in the ICU they got a “1 2 3 4” out of me on the 15th but I was under heavy sedation. Apart from that, I have been communicating with a pad of paper and with keyboard devices when given the opportunity.
I got my trach downsized first thing this morning and it makes a world of difference to my swallowing, my breathing and my speaking. I can plug the hole and breath through my nose in and out, and my voice sounds more or less like my voice. Not quite as good as before surgery but certainly worth feeling good about. Or rather it did at 7:30am. By the time my mom left for the airport at 2:15, it was pretty hoarse (though still not as bad as after the surgery in November). Totally worth it. Also, the taste thing seems to be subsiding. If I am lucky, I will be drinking water tomorrow like a normal person and off those insipid thickened liquids (there will be test results in the morning). But there is more weird diet stuff for me in the near future.
I’ve been scheduled for Radioactive Iodine Therapy (RAI) on March 10th at the Jewish General, which is great. The sooner, the better. I do not want to be fully recovered from surgery only to get beaten back down again. I’d rather take my shots now and then do all my recuperation in one shot. RAI can also mess up your taste buds and offers a number of other unpleasant side effects which I won’t bother detailing, but there you go. It’s 2.5 days in isolation and at the end you have to throw out your clothes. Both my cats went through it, except if I’m lucky I’ll find a way to have internet. In preparation, I will be on yet another special diet, so locals please hold back on the food gifts for now. When I get home, it’s going to be all “vegan low-iodine chef” for awhile. I will make it be better than it sounds.