So, I haven't slept, but I'm feeling a bit better after re-watching the American Idol finale and doing a little grammar lesson with my five year old. She wanted to know the difference between short and long sounds. She's curious, what can I say. So, I really want to record this story, because it's one for the books, people.

At 9 pm on Tuesday, my husband and I were sitting on the couch. I had sent the children to lay down in my bed to watch Thomas and go to sleep. He got up, got something to drink, and then walked behind the couch, leaned over it, and just stood there. I knew right then what was wrong. Whenever he is in severe pain, he can't sit and he can't stand up straight so leaning is the best answer, so he leaned. So, I'm not sure what time, but we headed to bed. I gave him one darvocet, and he slept. Restlessly. He did a lot of tossing and turning. At one point he went to the bathroom and I found him leaning against the wall crying. He couldn't move. I got him back in bed. At 4:30 is that morning he called in sick to work. He NEVER calls in. Well I guess that isn't true anymore, because this was the third time in about as many months. I digress. He shook me, asked for 2 more Darvocet (I have them locked up, so the kids can't get them) and went back to sleep. At 2:30, someone from his work called and said that to come back to work he needed to have a doctor's note. Sigh. So he asked me to call Kim, our PA. I called their office and they put me on hold. The lady came back on the line and said 'I talked to Kim and she said that if he is still having abdominal pain she doesn't think there is anything else she can do for him and he needs to go to the ER.' I started crying and said 'Well actually all he needed was a doctors note, but I'll talk to him', and I hung up the phone.

At this point I was frustrated because I knew he wouldn't go to the ER. So we decided to try calling his liver Dr. They can't see him until July 30th. Sigh. So the ONLY choice was to go to the Emergency room. Now here's where things get.. weird or something. I felt at this point like this was a good thing. A God thing, even. Knowing that the only way he would go to the ER was if he were forced to, I was glad he was being forced to. Now where we live the ER is small and basically a band aide station, so we opted to drive the hour and 15 minutes to go the the 'Trauma Center'. Bad idea number one. We opted for that hospital because that is where his liver dr is. That's where all his records are. It seemed a good choice for diagnostics, etc.


So we drive the hour fifteen, and walk in at 5:17. They checked him in, and literally had him triaged within 5 minutes. The triage nurse was a friend of his, a guy he works part time with, and he told him that it wasn't really that busy, we shouldn't be waiting that long. And we waited. We watched people come and go. And we waited. And we watched more people come and go. They called him back every two hours to check his vitals. Eventually they put an IV in him, drew blood, and sent him right back out to the waiting room. And we waited. At this point, on the pain scale, he was at about an 8.5. Sitting makes it worse. And we sat. The waiting room was -30 degrees. Everyone there was wrapped up in blankets. We didn't have dinner, and no money for the vending machines. And we waited. We never asked how long it would take. We weren't pushy or rude or anything. We just waited. Eventually I started pacing bc my feet were going numb. At 3 hours I was irritated. At 5 I was starving. By hour 9, I was slightly amused. After ten hours of waiting in the waiting room without seeing a doctor, we were put in a room. And we waited.

An hour later a nurse came in. She asked him a few questions. Ten minutes later a dr came in. This is where hysteria sets in. It was about 4 in the morning. We had been up all night, him in severe pain the whole time, and we'd just been left to sit. We were irritated. The doctor came in, palpated his belly, asked some questions. And then he said what caused my whole body to be wracked in violent sobs. 'Well that's a really long time to be dealing with so much pain. But you've pretty much already had all the tests run, and with your blood work normal tonight, I don't see any point in doing a bunch of scans. Really the only thing I can do for you is to give you some pain meds, AND YOU NEED TO SEE YOU PRIMARY CARE GIVER'.

Pop quiz every body. What did our primary care giver tell us to do?

Exactly. So we sat and we waited for 11 hours, and all we got was blood work, a shot of morphine and a shot of Zophran. The Morphine didn't even get rid of all the pain. It just made him high enough to not really care. So after I managed to get my tears under control, and scrape myself up off the floor, we left. We drove home, got food, cried, and went to sleep.

I can not tell you how exhausted I am. I can't explain to you how frustrated we both are. I hate this all. We spent all of that time, hoping for answers. Hoping that someone would find something new. Something else. Instead, we're told to go back to our Dr. Who sent us to the ER. It's like every one is saying 'I don't want to deal with this' and we're the ones having to live with it. It's so hard. I can't even explain. It took every thing I had to be a Christian at 4 this morning when they just drugged him and sent him out the door. Part of me wants to believe that they left us out there because they thought he was just looking for drugs. I don't know. But I do know that I am completely flabbergasted. I mean I understand that his liver enzymes were normal. THAT'S A GOOD THING. But, if he's in that much pain, and his liver enzymes are normal, don't you think that maybe there could be something else that needs to be found? Don't you think that maybe the scans are called for, because there are inexplicable symptoms that aren't being caused by his liver disease?

He says he's at his breaking point. He says he's had almost all he can take. I don't know what else to do. I don't know where else to go. I don't know what the next step is. I do know that this is a very hard road to walk. I am exhausted. I am so lonely. I feel so useless, helpless. I don't know where to go or what to do. I am at the end of my rope. I don't know how to be strong for him, I feel so beat and broken. I don't know what to do. So we'll keep trying and keep praying, and we ask that you keep praying with us.

If I think of any of the amusing/irritating things that happened while we waited, I'll let you know :)
1 Response
  1. Katie Says:

    oh my gosh...that is have to be pushy sometimes at those stupid ER's! they are TERRIBLE!!

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  • I'm a wife. I'm a mom. I'm a photographer. I'm a lover of Jesus. My house is a mess, my kids are dirty, we eat take out more often than not. My life is loud, busy and crazy. And that's okay with me.
    This is Eric, the man you've been praying for. He's a paramedic. He quilts in his spare time. No, I couldn't make that up :) He has NASH (a form of liver disease, non-alcoholic) and diabetes, but those things don't define him. He's a man of God, an insanely wonderful husband, and the best daddy in the world.. Just ask these guys..
    Our daughter Ali, she's 9. She's fiercely opinionated and strong willed. She's a Daddy's girl, but the umbilical cord hasn't but cut from me, either. She's a gymnast, and proud of it. She spends more time upside down or turning flips than she does walking. She's crazy smart, and absolutely sure of it. She is my insufferable little know it all.
    Our son Dylan, 7. We lovingly refer to him as Chubs. Or Chubby. Or fat boy. Ahem. He is all boy, as you can see by his crazy wild energy. He has the highest pain tolerance of any child I have ever met. He plays soccer and does gymnastics, but truly he is a gamer, a nerd. He is an avid reader and loves to climb. Not to be outdone by his sister, he's a drama king, but to him, I'm the best mommy in the world.