Monday, February 09, 2009

Wherefore art thou?

Hey. How's it goin'? Been a while, huh? Yeah, I haven't stopped by here in a few days. What have I been up to? A little of this, a little of that... Oh, yeah, and I took Mom to the emergency room.

(caution, this could get graphic... or gross.. or both... at least for a little while)

Sunday afternoon, she called me to tell me she had been throwing up since 3:00. She did not look good (sorry Mom). We called her insurance company, who have a 24/7 registered nurse on duty you can get info/help from. After spending some time on the phone, the nurse said it was best if we got Mom to the ER.


The closest hospital is Medical Park in Hope Arkansas. Frankly, it sucks. But, it is close. When we got there, there were half a dozen or so people there and they had been waiting up to SIX HOURS and had not been seen yet. In the meantime, we sit down and I go over and get Mom checked in. And we wait... and wait... all the while, Mom is puking her.. well, I'd say guts, but really, her guts were long gone by this point, so let's say knees, up.

By the time we got called back, we had been there about two and half hours (I think, my memory is a little fuzzy and I didn't even have medication), and by then, Mom had been puking her ankles, toes, and I am pretty sure she was sucking pieces of the floor up through her body.


The doctor and nurses got her settled, and after a bit, she was given some medicine to calm her stomach and make her a little loopy. Well, a lot loopy, really. She began telling me that the room was fuzzy. Then, she said she could see all kinds of things when she closed her eyes. She said a few other things, but even I couldn't make a coherent enough grasp of it to relate it here. She has some xrays done.

Around 10:30pm, I took a short drive to Taco Bell (what else is open that late on a Sunday evening in Hope, Arkansas, other than Waffle House?). It's not really short the way I went, though. I took the by-pass, which was actually longer than just cutting through town. It was late, what can I say?

At one point though, I came around a curve and drive down the road some, then I come around another curve. For an instant, I am pretty sure I had just come around this curve. Holy crap, I'm in the Twilight Zone, or Groundhog's Day, or some new bizarre combination of the two! As I focus my eyes, I realize I am not quite where I thought I was, and indeed, there are two curves, and life is basically normal (minus the fact my mother was lying in a hospital bed finally NOT puking up the kitchen sink).


I get back to the hospital and decide the best thing for me to do is eat my supper in the hospital parking lot....in front of the ER waiting room... Yeah, that was my 'best' thing. Seriously, exactly when did my brain shut off, and really, should I be driving? I'm not thinking so.

I head back into the ER and a few minutes later, we're told Mom gets to check into the Hotel Medical Park. You check in, but you don't check out... or you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave... or well, you might as well check out and leave because we're all going to the monster truck rally. Take your pick.

Evidently, she has several air pockets trapped in her intestines, and her body is not too happy about it. She'll have to stay for observation, hydration, and pseudo libation in the form of drugs.

Mom tells me to go home and get some real rest and for me to come back in the morning to See how things are. I protest, but lose the fight. Amazingly, the drive home was nowhere near as eventful as the trip to Taco Bell. Evidently, the ghoulies and ghosties decided they had better things to do.


Fast forward to this morning. No word form the doctor. The nurse comes in and Mom is gone for an updated xray and an ultrasound. I play UNO on my HTC Touch while I wait... Oh, and I answer email and surf the web. Yeah, we're not supposed to have our cellular devices turned on, but really, do cell phones affect medical equipment at all? I sincerely doubt it. Though, I did notice there was a 'code blue' for the guy in the next room while I was trying to look up a problem with my company's web server. I thought it was a K-Mart thing... Just kidding. Calm down..... I know what a 'code blue' is. And, no, the guy in the next room did not code out. Heck, I don't even know if there WAS a guy in the next room! I'm trying to keep things light here, people!

After Mom gets back, the nurse says the doctor comes in at 10am. He then reads everybody's charts. He goes to see the patients in ICU. I've always wondered if first-year doctors go around saying that alot, thinking it's funny: "I Se You in the ICU!" Yeah, prolly not. After his stint in ICU, Mom's doctor would make his regular rounds. It is at this point, the nurse says, "On a good day, you'll see him by noon. On a regular day, by 2 or 2:15 tops." Nice. mom tells me to go to work.

After lunch, John and I stop by to see how things are going. Still there, still no doctor. Back to work. Not long after I'm back, Mom calls to let me know that the doc says things have moved a little and that there air pockets down there. Mom is put on a liquid diet for 48 hours. But, the nurses are working up her discharge papers! Wahoo!

A couple hours later, Mom is ready to go (feeling MUCH better), and so am I!


Oh, there is one little thing I forgot to mention. Yeah, on Tuesday, Mom is flying out to Pittsburgh. Her best friend is having open heart surgery, and she wants to be there for her. So, in the hospital one day, in Pittsburgh the next. THAT is my Mom...

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