Monday, October 20, 2008

What’s it like to have surgery in Costa Rica?

My personal experience in Costa Rica began as a bittersweet experience. Two of my closest friends from my hometown of Austin, Texas bought a hostel in Costa Rica, packed up, and moved far away. As much as I miss seeing them regularly, my son and I were blessed with the opportunity to travel to places we had never been. Needless to say, we fell in love with the country and have returned numerous times to enjoy the cloud forest, canopy tours, white water rafting, secluded beaches, and volcanoes.

This trip, however, is a whole new experience. My girlfriend Elena, now a resident of Costa Rica, is having surgery tomorrow at CIMA Hospital in San Jose to treat battle scars of childbirth.

Elena has never had surgery, and to my knowledge has never even taken pain medication other than Tylenol. She is one of the fortunate women for whom childbirth came quickly and relatively easily. Naturally, she and her husband are quite anxious about the extensive surgery that is scheduled for tomorrow! So that he can remain home in the cloud forest to care for their children and business, I am on my way to San Jose to accompany Elena through the process.

Thus begins my journey to tell a firsthand story of what surgery in Costa Rica is all about from the perspective of companion, caregiver, and friend.

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