|NOTE: This blog was previously published under the [JESSE 2.0] blog at http://jessetwopointoh.blogspot.com but has been absorbed into Jesse's main blog for archival purposes. You can read all Jesse 2.0 entries here.|
Yesterday another inconvenience of no longer having a family living with me came to the forefront - and it was something I never thought I'd face anytime soon.
I haven't been to the emergency room (or really, a hospital) since I was twelve years old (for me; I had visited my ex-wife there several times). But yesterday morning when I awoke at 4 AM I immediately knew something was "wrong" because the pain in my abdomen was unlike anything I had ever experienced before.
I thought at first it might be the stomach flu because of the nausea, but the pain extended from my abdomen backwards through my lower back - and the heating pad didn't help. Finally after writhing in pain for a couple hours in bed I dragged myself into the heavy rain and drove myself to the emergency room.
Thankfully everything went fairly quickly and they quickly put in an IV for fluids, anti-nausea and morphine. As I lapsed in and out of consciousness for the next couple of hours, they kept asking me for basic information that had to be in their system already, and finally got me in for a CAT scan. Half an hour later the doctor said that I have a kidney stone, which is too small to operate for and must come out "naturally" (read: painfully at some undisclosed time in the future).
After they wheeled me back from the CAT scan they forgot to take down the sides in the bed and (also because the IV was connected to the bed) I was momentarily trapped, feeling quite nauseous, with no convenient receptacle. Fortunately a nurse came in and gave me a bag specifically made for such situations.
A couple hours later I awoke to the doctor asked me if "someone was waiting for me." No, I said in a haze of morphine, not realizing what that really meant until afterward. There was no one that cared for me now, no one that would be in the waiting room, no one to drive me home. I was truly on my own.
They said I couldn't drive because of the morphine, which made sense to me, and offered to call a cab in the pouring rain, which I took to Wal-Mart and got prescriptions for Vicadent and anti-nausea medicine filled, stumbling around the store, soaked, with my hospital bracelet still on and gauze and a cotton ball around my elbow like some sort of homeless druggie.
Fortunately a former co-worker was there at the pharmacy and offered to drive me home so I wouldn't have to take another cab (something that, by the way, I had probably only done once before in my life).
The time between then and noon today I spent drifting in and out of consciousness in bed trying to deal with the pain. Today, thankfully, the pain has subsided but I still have that empty feeling that there was no one there to calm the pain, no one to help me stumble through that horrible day in the rain.