In February of 2004, I was minding my own business, working a marketing job at a software reseller, when my gut first struck. At first I was embarrassed because I thought I had a really bad hangover and I was at work, but then after I missed a few days I thought I had a stomach virus. It was a couple weeks later that I finally got in to see a gastroenterologist to find out why my hangover never went away. His guess: an ulcer. Easy enough. He prescribed me some medicine and I was on my merry way. But it kept going on. My mornings were spent belching in the shower trying my best not to vomit. So finally I scheduled an endoscopy. It was a hiatal hernia. Bummer. Those don't go away like ulcers do.
So fast forward two stomach-wrenching years to January 4th, 2006. I was in Georgetown University Hospital (or GUH as their internal publications call it) awaiting surgery at the hands of Dr. Steven Evans, who is chief of surgery at Georgetown and probably an all around rich guy. The surgery I had is called Laparoscopic Nissen Fundoplication. Basically they take the top of your stomach and wrap it around the valve that connects the esophagus and the stomach. It reinforces this valve and keeps all of that nasty stuff from coming back up and imperiling my day to day living.
That was last week, and now my incisions are healing and I graduated from my week long liquid diet to one of soft foods like eggs and pasta. I've lost 18 pounds and counting. But I don't feel like I'm going to throw up all the time now which is good. Now comes the real adventure: how badly will my insurance company try to give me the shaft this time?