Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Rough week

On Saturday, I went out to lunch with a friend. Had a great lunch! We ate at this cool Crepe place which was really tasty. BUT as we wrapped up our lunch, I got a text from my husband saying he needed to go to the ER, so I rushed home, and took him to the hospital with chest pains, shortness of breath & fever/chills. They thought he was having a heart attack, so they did all sorts of testing, admitted him, did an angiogram, etc. It was NOT a heart attack, so they kept him in the hospital until today (Wednesday) poking and prodding him to try and figure out what's wrong. He had a bad EKG which made them think something was wrong with his heart.

I live in the midwest, and we've only been here a couple years. I don't make close friends quickly. It's also never my first instinct to ask for help. Ever. Stupid independent streak! On Saturday, I sat in the waiting room for the cath lab, waiting to find out if my husband had a heart attack. This was after watching them do emergency EKGs and chest Xrays in the ER while putting nitroglycering under his tongue. I felt stoic, even strong... but at the same time really worried. And really alone. There weren't even any other people in the waiting room. Just me.

I should have called my mom. Or my sister. Or my close friends who live in other cities. Or even one of the friends we've made here so far. I do have friends here, it just takes me a really long time to feel close to people. And I have trouble even asking family and super close friends for help - so for newer friends, forget it.

Instead of calling someone, I read about the health care bill in Time magazine until the doctor came in. When he told me my husband's heart was fine - clean and clear arteries, good blood flow - I let out the breath I didn't even know I'd been holding. OK, what's next?

They admitted him, scheduled him for more tests on Sunday, and then I watched as he suffered, laying flat on his back, in severe pain, for about 10 hours. You see, they put a stent in his leg for the angiogram. And until they took it out he had to lie flat. As it turns out, the two things wrong with him (which we found out over the next few days) cause chest pain that is much worse when you lay down flat.

The nurses kept telling me they ordered pain meds, but it took 3 or 4 hours before any arrived. And then they didn't help. Not until he got Vicaden at around hour 7 did the pain subside even a tiny bit. And of course, because it was just THAT kind of day, his blood pressure dropped ... and they couldn't take out the stent until it came back up. Fabulous.

At 11pm, I walked to the nurses station, and begged them to take the stent out though a choked up voice and leaking eyes. That finally got them to take the damn thing out. His blood pressure had been back to normal for 2 hours by that time.

I did eventually call my husband's mom and my parents to let them know what was going on. And on Sunday, it occurred to me that I should email my church prayer group to ask them to send a few prayers up to the big guy... and as a result, one of my church Friends came over to take me to dinner. And she came back the next day to take me to lunch. It was nice to have someone here to lean on a little. She even got me to realize that getting a private room is as easy as asking for one (well, that and being willing to pay a little extra). And I must say, the private room is well worth the $25 extra bucks per night they charged us.

The first night we had a double room, and I slept on three stiff chairs lined up in a row. They weren't even supposed to let me stay, but I wasn't going to leave until I knew he was doing better. I finally did leave at 3am to run home for a couple hours and to pick up a few thing for Mr. Vitamin C (henceforth, VC, my hubby).

The next night they had a pull-out chair in the private room, which felt like heaven.

Until I started spotting again.
And then bleeding a real flow.

On Monday, between the bleeding and the unknown surrounding VC's health I thought I would split in two. While he was out for various test, I curled up on the pull out chair and cried. And cried. And cried. I was pretty sure the pregnancy was over, but I didn't know how to process those feelings along with the feelings about the unknown surrounding VC's health. I lost all patience. I even snapped at VC a few times. What a nice wife, right? Poor thing is in the hospital and his wife becomes an emotional freak.

By Monday night we had the official diagnosis of esophogitis/GERD to answer part of the mystery, but that didn't explain his too fast heart rate and the elevated ST levels on his EKG. Our hope was that we'd find out an answer from the echocardiograph... which eventually did solve the mystery. Pericarditis - inflamation of the sack around his heart, caused by some sort of mysterious infection we never noticed. And do you know what the treatment is? Advil. A lot of Advil, but just Advil.

Today VC was finally discharged at 1:00pm. At 1:45 we walked into the fertility clinic for an ultrasound... and found out that my uterus is now, indeed, empty.

Goodbye little cashew.


  1. Oh what a terrible few days for you Peapod. I'm so sorry. Hang in there sweetie.

  2. (((((Peapod))))))

    I send my love to you and VC. Much, much love.

  3. I'm so sorry. Take care of yourselves.

  4. Oh sweetie, I am so very sorry. That is just too much in one week for anyone to have to endure. You will be in my thoughts and prayers. HUGS!

  5. I'm so very sorry. This is really, really unfair and I hope your hubby and you are both going to be okay. I'm keeping you and him in my thoughts.

  6. I don't even know what to say....what a terrible few days. I'm so sorry sweetie. (((HUGS)))

  7. I am so sorry!!! I will be thinking about you. <3

  8. Thank you all - it's so nice to have your support, especially after this week. VC is doing better. We bought him a POANG chair from IKEA yesterday to help him sleep (he still can't lay down comfortably), and although he's still uncomfortable and not feeling great - he's definitely getting a little better each day.

  9. I am soooo sorry!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have been trying to find the words to say, but having been there I know there is not much to say. Just know we are praying for both of you. Also, I know your little one is in heaven now, but you are still a mommy. Happy Mother's Day. I am sorry it is bitter sweet.

  10. I'm so sorry, Peapod. Hope VC fully recovers soon. (hugs)

  11. I just wanted to check in on you. How are both of you doing?

  12. Haven't heard from you in awhile. Hope you guys are doing ok. Let us know how you are when you have a minute.

  13. I just happened upon your blog -- and was saddened to hear your news. I've gone through it myself, twice -- and the fleeting ghostliness of this kind of loss is so otherworldly sometimes. I'm wishing you and your husband all the best,

  14. Hey there. We haven't heard from you in a while, and I wanted to make sure everything was ok. I've been thinking about you!

  15. We are ok. I'll see if I can convince PeaPod to post tonight.