Inside the Coma.

My mom suggested that I should write about my experiences from the pancreatitis ordeal in the Czech Republic, and I thought that would be a good idea.  But since there is so much to write about, I will be breaking it down in smaller segments.  That is, when my pain is somewhat manageable and allows me to do so. :D

When I was rushed to the hospital in October 2008 – after a 16 hour constant bout of abdominal pain and vomiting – the doctors had to perform an emergency surgery.   During the initial surgery (to remove a gallstone that had done something to my pancreas), they discovered the internal damage was far more severe than first thought.  Since I had gone through an entire month of pain, and had not sought medical attention, my pancreas started to “die” (and some of the surrounding organs had followed suit).

It was then decided that they would induce a coma since they needed to remove all of the damaged, dying and dead issue.

Anyway, the coma ended up lasting an entire month while 9 major surgeries were performed.

Many people have asked me what it was like to be in a coma.   Did I sense people around me?   Did I hear them speaking to me?  I guess every coma experience is different, because I sensed neither of those.

What I DID sense was movement.  My coma felt like a long dream.  I dreamt that I was travelling from town to town and house to house.  I recall panicking a few times thinking I had lost my passport.  Weird, I know.  I suppose I dreamt of that because I felt the motion from the frequent transfers from the ICU to the OR and vice versa.

The second part of my dream was a little dark.  I dreamt that during some of my “travels” a gang was following me.  I tried to flee from them but occasionally they would catch up to me.  What happened next still makes me cringe to this day – the members of the gang would pull out a knife and stab me in my stomach and gut me.  It was insanely painful.  And trust me, I have experienced some intense and agonizing pain in my life, and this was by far the worst.

The pain felt so real because it WAS real – I had actually felt my surgeries being performed on my internal organs.  Although I was in a coma (and my lower body had been temporarily paralyzed to prevent movement), I still felt the incisions, etc.

When I woke up from the coma, I was very disorientated.  Since I had travelled and moved around a lot in my dreams, I thought I had transferred to another hospital.  It took quite a while to realize I was in the same hospital (and even in the same bed). :D

The craziest part was that I thought I was just going to have a gallstone removed – and woke up a month later!!

It’s surreal to think that a month of my life was lost, but I guess one month is better than the rest of my life. :)

Thank you for reading.  Diane.

  1. 11 years ago

    the dream part is really interesting but to feel the surgeries being performed is really scary! its also crazy that you thought u would be having a rather quick surgery done and woke up a month later.. and a month dreaming must feel a lot more than just a month.. when you woke up, did you have any idea of how much time had really passed? please elaborate! great post!

    • 11 years ago

      Oddly enough the dream felt like a normal dream in regards to the length. When I woke up I was really foggy and confused so I didn’t really comprehend what was going on. When I found out a month had passed, it was surreal, almost unbelievable because it did not feel that long! I went under mid October and regained consciousness mid November, so there was a big change in temperature. I recall thinking that was really weird.

  2. 11 years ago

    You are my HERO !


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *