Another Plastic Surgery

by Kyle G

     I lay on the operating table, staring into the light.  I had been waiting for this operation for so long, but I didn't know it would feel like this.  I always thought that once it happened, I would never look back.  I thought that it would make me feel strong and sure, that everything would be okay.  But it didn't.  All it did was make me feel more insecure.  And unsteady.  The grass was definitely greener

     I saw the doctor stand over me and smile.  He seemed as if he knew exactly what he was doing.  I saw no fear in his eyes, which only served to increase the fear in mine.  I tried to talk myself into calming down and trusting him.  After all, he was the one that I chose.  I had decided to trust my life with him, and he's done nothing to make me doubt him yet.  Then why do I feel so unsure?  I took a deep breath, trying to push my irrational fears out of my body.  I knew that this was a good thing.  Why, then, couldn't I make my heart believe what my head was telling it?

     He put a translucent mask over my face, asserting that he was in control of the situation.  I smiled through the cheap plastic, trying to pretend that I had complete faith in him.  I had taken the leap.  I tried hard to ignore that I've been hurt in the past.  I've put my trust in doctors that should never be trusted with another person's life.  But that's the problem.  You don't find that out until it's too late.  Everyone can fool you with words.  They can tell you where they got their doctorate, they can tell you all of their life experience, and they can tell you exactly how they plan on operating on you.  But they never talk about the complications. What's going to happen if something goes wrong.  And that's the important part.  I'm not as concerned about the doctor when the surgery's going as planned.  It's how he reacts to a problem that I'm interested in.

     But here I was, just trusting someone else.  I figured that I couldn't hold it against every doctor just because some had turned out bad.  I just wasn't good at picking them.  Finally, though.  I've finally found one that I think I can trust.  Even though there were questions swirling around in my mind, I think I can trust him.  He told me to count backwards from 10.  I was out by 8.  He was now in complete control of my life — what a helpless situation.

     It all started with the slice of the knife.  That was the first step of every operation.  My heart stopped beating for a second, like the first time you see your next true love.  The doctor hesitated during that moment, and then he realized that everything was fine, so he kept on going.  Deeper into me, trying to figure me out.  Before the surgery, he could only speculate.  He could tell me from his experience how things should go, but now, he was in it for good.  And the further along he got, the more he figured me out.  He realized that my heart was just a bit lower than it should be.  He found out everything about me.  The x-rays gave him a good idea, but for the first time, he was inside of me.

     With a careful incision, he sliced off a piece of me.  He took it out of my body and placed it on a stand to his left.  It's weird to think how one small piece can make that big of a difference.  It probably weighed less than a couple of ounces, but it was still a part of me.  A part of me that I wouldn't have any more, and I could never get it back.  He kept going about his work.  The more he took from me, the less like me I became.  It's almost like this operation would change me completely.  Like I would become a new person.  I guess that's how it goes.  You can't go through an operation like this without coming out a little different.

     He was finally finished with me.  After all the probing and cutting, he had gotten what he came for.  And that was it.  He closed me back up.  It's strange how he can be inside me one minute, and then just as soon, he's trying to sew up the cuts he just made.  Minimizing the damage he caused.  Of course, I appreciate it.  Some doctors don't focus enough on the closure.  But the better it's done and the more time spent on it, the less the scars will stick around to haunt me.

     When the operation was over, I woke up in an empty bed, all alone.  At first, I was weak.  I couldn't even move.  I had wished the doctor would come back.  He was the one that did this to me.  He was the only one that could fix it.  But he didn't.  The nurses all told me I would be just fine.  They said that I did great in the surgery and that I would recover in no time.  But I could never make myself believe them until it actually happened.

     It took a while, but I always did.  I always came out of the surgery.  Even though I doubt it when I'm lying in the hospital, I eventually make it out of the recovery room.  Despite the damage the operation did, I come out stronger.  The bruises and scars may never go away completely, but that can't detract me from another operation.  It's worth the pain and the cost and the hassle.  The benefits of surgery aren't immediate.  They have to come with time.  Every doctor may get me a little closer to my ideal self, but I've never been completely satisfied yet.  Some day, the right doctor will come and finally make me complete.

     Just not this time.