loracs: (Default)

I meant to send valentine  to several folks through the LJ thingy, but the last few days have been . . . well . . . instead of using some tired old word like "busy" or "overwhelming" or "chaotic" - all perfectly good words and true, never-the-less do not convene the flavor of the last 48 hours.  It's Time Line Time.

Thursday
9 am - meet with electrician who is doing work on dbubley's house.  stonebender wakes up with all the signs of getting my crappy cold.

10:30 am - go to KPPACC to see dbubley and I find her still sick - not able to keep food in her body for long.  She has now lost 70 lbs in 6 weeks.

12:00 pm - pick up stonebender and go to Stacy's memorial (I'll have to write more about that later)

4:00 pm - leave church and head to Sal's for dinner - stonebender had a craving for their grilled salami/cheese sandwich.

6:00 pm - on drive home I get a call from dbubley.  KPPACC has transported her to the Kaiser Oakland ER, they couldn't figure out why she was still so sick almost 4 weeks post-surgery.  Thought she might have a bowel obstruction.

7:00 pm - drop stonebender off at home, feed Pippin and head to the hospital. 

While I'm at the hospital, stonebender starts to feel worse and calls serenejournal, who gets a ride from sogwife and comes over ASAP.

Friday
12 am: after many hours trying to make dbubley as comfortable as possible on the small gurney - not really possible - and after seeing several doctors and having x-rays taken, they still don't know what's wrong, but they don't think it's a bowel obstruction.  She will be admitted as soon as they have a bed ready.  Finally they do and I stay until she is safely transferred onto the hospital bed. 

1 am: go home, pick up serenejournal and take her home.

3 am: stonebender does not feel like he can lay down because he is so congested.  I finally go to bed around 3:30 am.

6 am: wake up, shower, and get ready to take Pippin to the vet - she's having her surgery.  Puppy making and lethal tail will be removed.  stonebender went with me, he was still feeling pretty bad.

8 am: after we drop of Pippin, stonebender decides he needs to go to the ER.

11 am: after several hours in the ER at Alta Bates, a breathing treatment and some other meds, we leave.  Original plan was to go see dbubley after I dropped off Pippin, so I could maybe catch a doctor around 9 am.  I tried to call her, but  there was no answer in her room.  I'm starving and we need to pick up a prescription for stonebender.  I pick up something next to Walgreen's and then we head to Kaiser.

12 pm: finally get to the hospital and dbubley is okay, but they're still looking for a cause.  She is on "nothing by mouth" until further news.  We hang out for a few hours.

2 pm: stonebender and I go to KPPACC to pick up dbubley's stuff.  I have to pick up Pippin about 5 pm, but stonebender is worried I'm too tired to drive up to Albany.  I call clever_doberman to ask if she'll drive me.  She has a car with a dog crate for her dobie, Misha - we have everything we need.  She meets us at the house.

4 pm: stonebender is feeling better, so we leave him and go to pick up Pippin.  It's raining and traffic is the wonderful rush hour basic, so it takes a while.  Poor Pippin is a little out of it, but mobile.  We finally get her into the crate and head home, with her whining most of the time.

7 pm: I pull out an assortment of stuff from the fridge and we all have a small dinner.  clever_doberman offers to hang out with stonebender and watch Pippin, who is very needy and wants to be in contact with someone at all times, while I take a nap.  My nap extends to almost midnight. 

Saturday
12 am: After clever_doberman goes home, I give stonebender a breathing treatment and we eventually got to bed around 3 am.  At this point, stonebender has been up for about 50 hours.  He goes out almost immediately.  I follow shortly after.

I woke up about 8 am and stonebender woke up around 10 am.  After a short visit from Dana with her "weekend" dog (a very sweet Golden Lab named Fortune), stonebender had his first real meal since Sal's on Thursday.  Since then I've done a load of laundry and noodled on-line.  That brings us to this current moment.  It has been a jam packed 48 hours. 

Soon I'll take a shower and go see dbubley in the hospital.  She can now have clear liquids - whoo hoo!

Hope you all are having a nice Hallmark Day!
loracs: (Gilly & Me)
dbubley was in an ER room for many, many hours and had several roommates.  Mostly this is not a fun place, but it had its moments. 

Hyper Man: My dialysis appointment is tomorrow.  Will I be out of here by then?
Nurse: Let's not worry about tomorrow, we need to get your heart rate down now.
Hyper Man: But I need my dialysis, I go every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Nurse: Sir, you are in a hospital, if you need dialysis you will receive it here.
Hyper Man: I need a phone, I have to call and cancel my ride, if I'm not going.  Can I get a phone?
Nurse gives him a phone.  He makes several calls, all the time ranting about being in the ER, how his friend thought he was faking when he passed out. and just a general feeling of being put out by EVERYTHING the medical staff asked him to do. 
Nurse finally takes the phone away and within minutes he's asking for it again.
Hyper Man: I still have a few calls to make.  Give me the phone.
Nurse: No, you are working yourself up with these calls.  No phone until your heart rates comes down.
The man let out the most whining sigh I've ever heard. 

Later there was a 62 yr old African American man having a stroke.  He'd had one about 10 years earlier.

Doctor: Sir, you need to be completely honest with me.  When was the last time you used cocaine?
Man: I was out of my blood thinning stuff.
Doctor: You mean your have not been taking your coumadin, the blood thinner?  For how long?
Man: couple days or a week
Doctor again asked him when he last used cocaine.
Man: when I was out of my thinning stuff, thought it would help.
Doctor: Sir, you can not take cocaine instead of your coumadin.
Man: okay

In between these questions they are asking him to smile and raise he arms and various other neurological tests,

Doctor: Sir, do you know what day it is?
Man: Jan. 6th
Doctor: Good, do you know what year it is?
Man: 2006
Doctor: Do you know who the president is?
Man: OBAMA!

Several of the medical team chuckled, as I did on the other side of the curtain.
loracs: (Angel puppet)
What's better than one medical problem at night - that's right two.  We're having us a twofer night.  After dbubley called from the ER and said to stay home tonight because they were admitting her, stonebender and I headed to bed.  Anyone want to guess what I found on his hip?  You win (and you know us too well) if you answered a large red and hot patch of skin.  Yep, cellulitis hits us twice in one night.  We had a paper prescription for his antibiotic, so off I go to the 24 hour Walgreen's drive-through pharmacy.   Even though no one was in line, it took an hour to fill it because they close for a 30 minute break about 10 minutes after I pulled up.  I drove around because I hate sitting in an almost empty parking lot at 3 am, I feel like a target.  Now I'm home, I need to take a few of my meds and try to get some sleep.  I think I'll sleep in until 6:15 am.  I might get 2 hours of sleep - oh boy, tomorrow/today's going to be fun. 

Edit/Update: Doctors say it's a UTI, gave her iv antibiotics and want to send her home.  I've off to pick her up now. 

A 911 Call

Jan. 6th, 2009 12:30 am
loracs: (Girl with Pearl Earring)
And they took [livejournal.com profile] dbubley away to the ER.  It is probably cellulitus again, but this time she was so cold, so shaky and feeling so sick I wasn't sure she could drive the wheelchair well enough to get in the van.  Her last bout was in Oct., she was in the hospital and post care facility for a total of 3 weeks.   I'm mad at the germs, I'm frustrated and I'm scared - mostly scared.  [livejournal.com profile] stonebender and I will be off to the hospital in a little bit.  I need to get some stuff together and take Pippin outside before I put her in the crate. 
As my mom would say "the problems of the living."


Edited Update: She just called and told me to stay home and come in the morning.  She's on a gurney, so her back is killing her, but they are admitting her (not that either of us had any reason to doubt they would) and I'll go in the morning.  Now if I can get to sleep.
loracs: (Default)
A  week ago today I was sitting in the hospital waiting, waiting and waiting for something to happen.  Checked in around 8:30 am, in the room around 10 am, IV in place around 1 pm, carted off to surgery at 6:30 pm, recovery room around 10:30 or 11 pm (keeping track of time was not my strong point here) and moved to a TCU room (transitional care unit) around midnight.  At 6:30 am, after making the painful transition to uprightness about 10 times to go to the bathroom (what were they pumping into my veins - Beer!), I decided to sit on the edge of the bed.  This is were I stayed until the very nice nurse brought in a comfortable chair for me to sit in around 10 am.  My escape, facilitated with the help of stonebender and serenejournal, was around 2 pm.  

With the help of family and friends, I have not only survived, but thrived during my period of near-deathness (a.k.a. basic, everyday, mundane, removal of the stupid gall bladder, millions of people the world over live happy, healthy, lives without one) surgery and recovery.  [personal profile] serenejournal  helped out bunches and bunches (you know all that you did and continue to do.)  

[profile] dbubley  got up at some stupid o'clock hour to go with me to the hospital.  Dbubley, my gall bladder and I had our last meal together and it was a biggie.  Sharing our orders we had pancakes, waffles, eggs, hash browns, corn beef hash, bacon, ham and sausages.  Yep, everything my gall bladder hated.  I figured 1) I'll be in the hospital and they can give me pain meds if it gets bad and 2) this was my last meal for at least 24 hours.  Funny thing is not only did my gall bladder behave (no pain at all), but my blood sugar numbers didn't even spike much.  

Dbubley went home to take care of Gilly and give out updates on my progress and [personal profile] stonebender  took over at the hospital.  He was there when they wheeled me off to the OR and he managed to get into the recover room to see me before he went home for the night.  As soon as my doctor left (she escorted him into the recover room) the nurses were mean to him; having "people" in their space just wasn't okay.  I know stonebender didn't want to leave the hospital until he saw me and they couldn't give him a time when I'd be transferred to the TCU, hence the recover room visit.  

I've been off this week.  I'm not suppose to lift more than 10 lbs, so serenejournal and [personal profile] wild_irises  have been helping out with stonebender - did I mention that his regular morning attendant, Stacy, was also in the hospital this week!  She's going to be fine and should be back on Monday, but this has made everything more stressful for everyone.  I'm feeling pretty good in the incision areas, but my back/hip has been acting up.  I think, actually I know, I've been holding myself in very tense ways as I move and I'm sure this has put a strain on other parts of  my body.  This pain I'm familiar with and I can feel it getting better.  Who knows, maybe one day soon I'll feel at home in my body again.

Pain

Oct. 4th, 2007 03:23 am
loracs: (Sunset)
 
I've been having gallbladder pain for a while now; actually saw a surgeon in July.  I didn't like her, so I didn't pursue the surgery, plus I was feeling better.  Did I mention that I hate, hate, hate the idea of anesthesia and being out of control of my body.  And there's the death possibility thing too.  I went through this about 3 years ago when I had knee surgery.  While I don't like pain, I understand pain.  I'm not terrified of pain.  Death I have no experience with and it scares the shit out of me.  Not being in total control of my body I am becoming more familiar with as I age, yet having no control over my body is another arena I have no experience with; again with the scared shitless.

Last weekend I had a bad attack and it lead to an appointment with my primary care doctor.  She sent me to the lab for some blood work, she didn't like what she saw and made an immediate appointment for an ultrasound and alerted the ER I was coming in.  This is Kaiser, so it was all in the same complex.  Nine hours later, after much pushing on my abdomen by many doctors, I was sent home with an appointment to see a surgeon the next day.  I liked this surgeon and I'm scheduled to enter the hospital Friday morning for a 6 pm surgery.  She wants me in the hospital early to make sure my blood sugar is stable.  I had a low while I was at the doctor's office.  I've been eating very little and almost no fat, trying to be good to my gallbladder.  Usually when I get a low, I know it, feel it, test for it and treat it and from start to finish it's about 30 minutes.  This time I did all that and it continued for two hours.  I'm signing off for the surgery, I'm undergoing the pre-op physical, I'm answering and asking questions, all the while I'm sweating, shaking and feeling crappy.  Add the over-all feeling of dread and fear and I can truly say I was having a bad day.  

After the appointment, I made my way on shaky legs to a bus stop, sat down and called  [personal profile] stonebender  /  [personal profile] serenejournal  (they were together in Berkeley) and [profile] dbubley  (she was at home.)  Tears and fear flowed (more like a torrential rain) through the phone.  I wasn't very coherent.  [personal profile] stonebender  took off immediately to come find me.  By the time he got there I was feeling more stable.  While I waited I kept testing my blood, slowly eating a bagel I'd started 2 hours before and silently crying.  I'm sure I was quite a site. This was right outside Kaiser’s main medical building and next to the hospital at the end of a shift. There were lots of people around, which would have come in handy if I’d pass out. While I waited for  [personal profile] stonebender ,  [profile] dbubley   and  [personal profile] serenejournal  took turns calling me on the phone to make sure I was okay. They didn’t know they were taking turns, but as soon as I’d hang up with one, the other one would call. What did we do before cell phones?
 
A million things are going through my head right now. I want to thank  [personal profile] clever_doberman , who came to the ER and stayed with me for many, many, many hours. I felt bad because they didn’t have a comfortable chair for her, so it was a pain in more ways than the boring way. 
 
The first doctor I saw was a surgical resident. She asked if I had anyone at home. I said yes, I have two partners. Quiz look as she said “partners?” When I defined them as one domestic and one wild, she only looked more confused. I further explained that I had two partners, one man and one woman. I said it’s called polyamory. When she said “I don’t know what that means.” I said, “Well you must not watch much Oprah.” Just as she finally figured out that this 50 year old, fat woman was talking about two lovers/partners/significant others,  [personal profile] clever_doberman  walked in. At which I announced, “This is L.E. and she is neither of my partners.”   Fun in the ER!
 
I also want to thank [personal profile] serenejournal , who came over to help [personal profile] stonebender  out and stayed the night.  She made some wonderful veggie soup to eat when I got home. I was starving. I’d only had a glass of tomato juice, a few bits of cantaloupe, an apple, a banana and a slightly stale, plain, dry bagel all day long. At midnight, a warm meal was very much appreciated. 
 
And a big thank you to my partners, [profile] dbubley  and  [personal profile] stonebender , both were ready to rush out into the cold, dark night to come to the ER, but I said to stay in place because I had a feeling I would be coming home.  I love you both so very, very, much. 
 
And the adventure continues . . .
loracs: (Girl with Pearl Earring)
I started feeling sick this afternoon.  On the drive home I was making my plans for the evening; get a little to eat, put the sick boy to bed and then crawl in after him.  The best laid plans and all that.

[profile] dbubleycalled me when I was about 15 minutes from home.  [personal profile] stonebenderIM'd her that he was having trouble breathing.  She came up to the house asap and called me for him.  Did he want to call 911, I asked.  I expected to hear an emphatic "no", instead I heard a weak "maybe". This was serious.  Stonebender hates, hates, hates going to the hospital.  The only thing worst is going to the hospital in an ambulance.  Since I was so close, he thought he could wait until I got home.  

One look at him and I was sure, one way or another, we'd be in the ER tonight.  I gave him the option of 911 or we would drive to the ER.  He said he wasn't sure he could drive his wheelchair into the van, so he asked for 911. The paramedics where here within a few minutes.  The flurry of people, equipment and questions kept my mind on the now, not the future.  Which was good, because watching them wheel him out the door, red rimmed eyes above the oxygen mask was so scary I thought I might freeze in place.  After he left, with [profile] dbubley's help, I gathered some stuff together and headed out the door to find the hospital.

On my way, I called [personal profile] serenejournalto let her know what was happening.  She said she'd meet me there.  Even though I was only about 15 minutes behind the ambulance, by the time I got there [personal profile] stonebenderwas already looking a little better.  What followed was several hours of breathing treatments, blood tests, and x-rays of his lungs.  The diagnoses was not pneumonia, but bronchitis.  The doctor leaned towards admitting  him, but [personal profile] stonebendersaid he really was feeling so much better, so they released him.  ser came home with us, to help take care of him.  Having not slept for several days, he really felt ready for bed.  That lasted about an hour.  As I write this, he is back in his chair, taking shallow breaths in front of the computer, next to me.  

I don't know where this night will end.  Back in the ER?  For the time being, I'm going to take advantage of  [personal profile] serenejournal's presences (she has been just wonderful) and try to sleep a little.  It will do no one any good if I end up on a gurney next to him.

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loracs

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