Gus continues to be the most popular thing about my cancer. Aside from whether I’ve started dating no question comes up more than, “How is Gus?” and, “Can I see him?” Well, there’s good and bad news. Gus, the Asshole Feeding Tube, has left the building; but not because I can eat cheeseburgers again.
He left because, being his usual nasty self, he would not stop trying to escape. One trip to emergency is followed, two weeks later, by another middle of the night awakening. He is hurting and, again, has deposited my stomach contents all over the bed. The cats are aghast.
This time, instead of the ER, I call Dr. H’s office. He always knows what to do. Kami, the dollface manager of all things, says it’s time for replacement. I still don’t eat enough to keep a wee gnat alive so going sans tube is out of the realm of possibility.
Besides, Dr. H told me Gus sticks around until I gain ten pounds. Can you believe it? I know. Me either. Someone told me to gain ten pounds. Am I being punked? It’s not funny really. Everything I do eat either returns for a second appearance or takes twenty swallows to lower itself into my gullet. Food hangs in the back of the throat like a spider you’re trying to flush down the toilet. It struggles, all eight legged, to keep itself from falling down into the abyss. Why? No one knows.
Dr. S, radiation doc, says it’s a side effect of radiation and the damage it does to throat, taste buds, saliva and swallowing. He and Dr. H agree that time is the answer. Neither one grasps that I have shit to do and have just about had it with the cancer bitch ruling my life. I might like to dance on a table again or drive through Jack In the Box drunk at two in the morning with Sisterella. Important stuff marks my agenda.
Middle Chicken is most unhappy surgery to replace Gus isn’t for two days. No matter, I tape him in place and refuse to speak to him. Don’t even bid him adieu when we hit the surgical bed. The doctor looks at him and confirms what I’ve been saying. Gus is an asshat.
“Does it hurt?”
“Hmmm. It’s not supposed to do that.”
“Oh really?” I don’t even try to argue anymore. I informed those in the know early on of Gus’ proclivity for bad behavior and they acted like it was no big deal. Until the doc takes him out and says, “Eww, he’s pretty gross.” He didn’t say that aloud but since I was awake and watching a screen of my insides I could tell when he looked at him, he was not pleased. Sometimes there is no joy in, “I told you so.”
He places a new tube in, a different type. It is comfortable, as comfortable as a tube sticking out a stomach can be. It is, indeed, more attractive and he appears to be very nice.
We’ve named him Gus-Gus, as in the little mouse in Cinderella. The reason is twofold. We want to rub it in Gus’ face that he’s been replaced and we figure if he’s named Gus-Gus, the sweetest of the sweet in the movie, he might live up to it. In the movie, he dances and sings and sews a lovely dress.
So far, so good. He hasn’t sewn me a lovely dress yet but we are getting on quite well. I can even take a bath. Squee. Gus-Gus where have you been all my life?