In some cultures (not the US) it's perfectly normal for someone else to do everything except nurse the new baby while the mother recovers. After my c-section the baby was in NICU for two weeks, so I did have that recovery time, but the day I actually broght the baby home, EVERYONE vanished. (Long story).
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I have. The largest was a cyst removal that was described as "somewhere between minor & major surgery". They put me all the way out, and other than nausea when I woke it wasn't too bad; it was painful for some time afterwards, but I was fully mobile. I also had a total of 8 teeth removed in two separate occasions. One was with general anesthesia, and the other with only novocaine (I was offered valium but was told "it doesn't do a thing for pain" so why bother? I drove myself home after that one.) I also broke a few bones, but they weren't compound fractures and the most painful part was getting the x-rays done. (well, that & the time I got put on crutches when it was my rib that was broken.)