Those who follow me on Twitter or otherwise electronically know me may have been surprised/frightened by some messages relating to my having surgery. Last Tuesday, I went in for some surgery to hopefully allow me to breathe through my nose in a more useful way. I recently learned that I had a deviated septum that rendered my left nostril just about useless. Of course, I never noticed this my entire life...it never occurred to me that I wasn't using that nostril.
Doctors believe that this obstruction to my breathing, both while awake and especially while asleep, could be the root of some health problems I've been struggling with. Anyone who knows me knows that I'm not a fan of doctors and certainly have no love for hospitals, so when I agree to have surgery, it means that I have a strong belief that it's important to my health and well-being to do so.
I had the surgery, consisting of a septoplasty and turbinectomy, last Tuesday, January 27th at the inexplicably awesome Stanford University Hospital. The surgery went completely as expected with no complications and was performed by the awesome Dr. Li. There were a couple of hiccups, one before and one after: I had an allergic reaction to the hospital gown so they had to get me a different one, and I had a slight arrhythmia for a few hours after surgery.
I'm on the road to recovery now. My mom was nice enough to fly out and take care of me for the week because, as she says, "that's [her] job until you have a wife." And I was glad to have her. The recovery was a bit tougher than I thought it would be. It would have been tough for me to manage everything by myself (though worth noting, super friends Shelby and Courtland offered to step up if mom wasn't able to come up). The pain was a bit more widespread and longer-lasting than I thought it would be, so the hospital and Dr. Li adjusted my pain medication a couple of times.
So how are things now? Well, my face is still pretty swollen, though it's most noticeable on my nose and upper-lip. The swelling has gone down a great deal since Tuesday, when my entire face was swollen, though amazingly I didn't get a black eye. Right now I probably look like I was beaten up, left on the street for a week, and then picked up and cleaned up a bit (but not much). If you want to know what it feels like, picture the worst, stuffiest cold you've ever had, take that, and then imagine someone punching you square in the nose as hard as they can. That's about what it feels like.
The most maddening part of the healing process is that I'm not allowed to blow my nose. That means I just need to let my nose drip whatever it's dripping, and that's driving me insane because it's been dripping since Tuesday (though thankfully has slowed down). I'm still a bit out of it thanks to the pain meds and mostly feel too tired to do much. Today was the first day I felt well enough to sit in front of the computer and type.
You may have been wondering how my last blog post got published on the same day as my surgery. WordPress has a great feature that allows you to delay the publishing of a post until a specific date and time, and since I wanted to keep to my one-tech-article-a-week resolution, I wrote it the previous weekend and just set it to publish on that day. Pretty cool, huh?
So, I just wanted to let everyone know that I'm fine and on the way to getting better. I'm sure it'll be at least another week before I feel close to normal, and probably be another 2-3 weeks before I have my previous energy levels back. I'm going to try to do some work on Monday, but might have to work from home if my head is still foggy. I'm also relatively sure that there will be at least two sentences in this post with grammatical errors, so please forgive that asdf;jklasdfcsd. Kidding. Kind of.
I don't know how everyone else feels about 2008, but in my opinion, it really sucked and I really couldn't wait for it to be over and done with. Obviously, the United States fell on some ridiculously woeful times, with the collapse of the housing market followed by a monumental dissolution of the financial system as we knew it. The effect hit me at work, where Yahoo! had two rounds of layoffs during the calendar year, and also personally as I tried to deal with my condo in Massachusetts. Needless to say, 2008 was a stinker of a year and now it's time to look forward.
I've never really been someone to set new year's resolutions, but I do have some plans for 2009. This will be the first year in the past five that I'm not going to be working on a whole book. Instead of spending weekends indoors, furiously pounding away on the keyboard to meet my next deadline, I'm going to go do some fun things. I've yet to explore my new area in Mountain View, so I'm very much looking forward to doing that. I may even take a few classes here and there.
I also want to recreate this web site. I posted about the redesign contest a little while ago (still time to enter, by the way!), but I also wants to reorganize the site and make it more of a place that represents me. I've also decided that I will post a new technical article every Tuesday throughout the year. My posts have always been kind of randomly timed, but this year I'm going to make a concerted effort to have a predictable schedule that people can count on. Of course, there will still be the randomness that you've come to know me for, but with a string of sanity on Tuesdays.
One big project I have for myself is to try to create more avenues of passive income. Book royalties are a great start, but I want to explore other avenues as well. I have a few ideas rumbling around in my head that I need to think through a bit more. I'm a huge believer in passive income as an important step in being financially independent, so I want to devote some serious time in this area.
I'm sure I'll come up with other goals throughout the year, but I figured I'd post these now in the hopes that I wouldn't forget about them later. Happy new year, everyone!