Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Alexis in the Sky with Dilaudid

the girl with kaleidoscope eyes

Life is somewhat complicated at the moment. My personal issues are the least of the problems. My dad had a 2-day conference up the highway a couple of hundred miles. My recovery seemed to be coming along nicely enough that it should have been OK for my mom to accompany him. My brother and cousin would be here in any emergency. In an emergency, of course, they wouldn't be able to do a damn thing to help other than to call 911 or to frighten away an intruder with a baseball bat, but that's better than nothing.

About 6:00, roughly two hours after my parents left, my midsection started cramping somewhere between extremely uncomfortably and excruciatingly.  I told my brother and my cousin. My brother, pre-med student that he is, decided to check my vitals. He checked my temp, which was 97.2, which may or may not have been significant, but wasn't indicative of anything serious. He checked my blood pressure, which was 90 over 50. That's a bit low, but my pressure runs a bit low. Then again, it could have been an indication of internal bleeding. Then again, it also could have been an indication that my brother sucks at taking people's blood pressure. My cousin Josh asked if me it was that time of the month. It wasn't, and I told him. His question did at least cause color to return to my face, as Matthew, my brother, noted that my previously ashen face was pinker than my bright pink pillow case.

Matthew, my brother, brought in the list of numbers to call. He called my parents' cells first, but only got voice mail. Next he called Dr. Kent, Jared's dad, who had  assisted on my most recent surgery and had performed other surgeries on me. His went to voice mail as well. They left a text there. Next they called GastroMan from Purgatory, who actually picked up.

Matthew talked to him first. Gastroman asked Matthew all about vitals. Matthew delighted in telling about how pale I was until Cousin Josh asked if it was my time of the month. I could hear laughter on the other end of the phone. Sadistic bastards, every one of them.

Gastroman asked to talk to me. He inquired about the location of the pain, the intensity (that scale of 1 to 10 of which they're so fond; if I'm in enough pain to be asked that question, I'm in too much pain to give a lucid answer, and I always pluck a random number out of my head. I think I said eight this time, which actually was probably pretty close. He asked if it was constant, or if it was a cramping nature. He asked questions about gastric function and bleeding.

He said he would come to my house himself except that he was taking his kids to a movie and had already canceled on them once, and would rather not again. He said he would call around and see if he could get someone else to check on me, but if he couldn't find anyone, his kids would have to go to the late showing of the movie, which would be fine with them but would seriously p!$$ off their mother He told me to hang in there for a few minutes, and someone would be in touch. He said if anything got worse or if there was any bleeding, to call him back immediately.

About three minutes later, I received a call from Dr. Kent, Jared's dad. He said that he had been in the shower when my brother left the text message and was in the process of calling me back when GastroMan called him. Dr. Kent told Jared to pack my toothbrush, slippers, extra pjs and undies, and anything else I thought I needed, and to drive me to his house.

I fell going down the stairs, but Matthew caught me, and Josh carried me to the car. I slept in Jared's bed, and Jared went to my house and spent the night there with the guys. It wasn't bad because Jared's mom changed his sheets, and she makes him keep his room clean.

After a [too] thorough exam, Dr. Kent said it was just cramping  that is a normal process of recovery once the colon starts working again. Because everything was working a little too well, Dr. Kent said there was no danger in giving me reasonably strong painkillers. Narcotics can slow the work of the intestines, but there was no danger, apparently, that would be caused by a bit of that happening in my case. Dr. Kent gave me good drugs. I was soon in my happy place, and the night was over as far as I was concerned.

I would never want to be a junkie, because if you become addicted to the good drugs, it takes more and more of them  --  eventually an unsafe level -- to stop the pain and achieve the desired effect. I want the good drugs to work when they're needed.

I'm occupying Jared's bed until my parents return home late tomorrow. I don't think Jared minds. My parents carefully inventory the liquor cabinet, but they won't complain about one or two Guinnesses per occupant being consumed as long as no one drives afterward. Jared's father has given in. He knows his son has discovered beer. His goal now is to come down heavily on the side of safe and moderate drinking versus the standards LDS line, which is, "All alcohol consumption is of the Devil. Don't even keep mouthwash in your mouth for more than a nanosecond."


  1. Ugh... that sounds very unpleasant, but it's great that you have so many doctors ready to take care of you. I'm sure you'll be rarin' to go in no time. As for me, I'm just rarin'... and doing a lot of bitching, as usual. This month needs to end.

  2. Sounds like you are going through a lot of different issues with your health in recovery. Your way of describing the guys cracks me up because they are so clueless, at times. What made me roar in laughter is Dr. Kent asking you about the scale of pain from 1 to 10. I agree with you. If you are in pain, you're at a doctor's office or the ER, chances are this question is moot. It's like the diagnosis of "fibromyalgia." I have always believed that it is a term that encompasses the "might be soft tissue, but we don't know exactly where, could be CFS, but let's call it fibromyalgia... that sounds like a sound word to describe we're not sure." Ugh! The humor never ceases. :) ~ Lots of hugs for U. ~ By the way, I have no clue as to how to truly identify myself here. I choose Anonymous because I am techno-challenged with computers. ~