I believe I have encountered an entirely different attitude hereabouts, that is, in Buenos Aires, about pain management. I had read an article that said US citizens were accustomed to better pain control, and I think I can vouch for that now. That said....
But let me set the stage. This blog follows on the one previous,in which I, Theresa, the big mouth behind Press**Watch, go to Argentina to get some basic facial feminization, that will (I hope) allow me to go about my daily duties with less abuse and/or notice from queerbashing types. I paid up front for the surgery with my savings, held back enough from several paychecks so that I could get here and hang out in a bed-and-breakfast, and here I am, recovering from the surgery.
It turns out that Clinica Robles is a sort of face-lift mill; for that, it nevertheless has a good reputation. And from what I can tell, I will have a pretty good result from the procedure. At this point it appears my hairline was not lowered, but I haven't even had the bandages off. I suppose the price would be worth it just for the lip job, which looks feminine to me--I'm happy with that.
I warned them before surgery that my liver is unusually efficient, but there are two barriers at least to communicating with medical professionals in Buenos Aires--one is the language barrier, and the other is the gender line. Maybe I should be proud that I am considered too feminine to discourse with rationally here, I don't know. But I do know when specific questions are getting evasive or generalized answers.
Since that was the case, and I could see it, I wasn't completely surprised to wake during surgery. I looked about, realized that I was strapped to a gurney in an operating theater with other patients and surgeons, and saw that the persons dealing with my body were not Dr. Robles, but rather, a pair of younger males, possibly an intern and/or an anesthesiologist. I was in a great deal of pain, and I told them so; I tried to sit up but the straps held me. I realized I was speaking in English, so I began to cry out, "!Tengo mucho dolor!--but they ignored me, so I cried "!Ayude me, por favor! Ayuda me!" I was in panic and agony. One of the men pressed me down, saying "calm." Then he took his scalpel, holding my head still with one hand, and began carving next to my right ear. The pain and horror was unbearable. I realized that I was powerless, and that this trial had to end with time. It was a bardo to be endured. I tried regulating my breathing, and I remember the tears streaming back over my ears. Then I finally passed out.
I awoke in confusion and agonizing pain; I was in the clinic with Ani. I begged for pain control and was shushed for a while, though a Spanish-speaking attendant eventually appeared with semi-effective pills.
And now the pain is better, and I'm at the hotel. Tomorrow I meet the doctor...