Wednesday, December 14, 2011

How Phoenix Tried to Kill Me - Part 3

When we got home, Trelina told me to go inside and get in bed while she took care of Jasmine and the luggage. Still out of it, I went in and sort of shuffled around in the kitchen for awhile until Trelina once again directed me up to bed. When she'd finished taking care of everything else, she had to actually help me onto the mattress, as any activity on the left side of my torso was enough to set all the pain bells ringing. I remember crying out as I put my back fully on the bed, laying there gritting my teeth and gasping while Trelina stood over me without any idea of what to do. She wasn't alone in that.

(Also - and I mention this here just to fully illustrate how much the first couple days of November sucked - we found out that night that we couldn't use the upstairs bathroom, the one closest to our bedroom, because every time we flushed, water poured through the kitchen ceiling. We had to go down two floors to the basement if we wanted to take a leak. Welcome home!)

I managed to get in and out of bed on my own during the night, and even to sleep a little bit, but I didn't feel any better in the morning, so we got dressed, dropped Jasmine off at a friend's house, and went to Howard County General.

It was like how I imagine JK Rowling must have felt after finally finding somebody willing to publish her silly little book about kid magicians. The doctors could tell immediately that something was seriously wrong with me. They EKG'ed me and X-rayed me and I got the obligatory IVs, just like in Phoenix, but nobody was shrugging their shoulders and going, "I don't know... muscle pull?" Even the male nurse said something to the effect of, "Dude, I'm not a radiologist, but your lungs look awful!"

I was asked a battery of questions by half a dozen doctors... who obviously weren't comparing notes because they were all asking me the same things. "Where've you been?" "What've you been doing?" "Got any history of lung problems?" "Are you HIV positive?" "Why are you so sick and your wife and kid aren't?"

The radiologist finally made the call: pneumonia in both lungs, along with an abscess on the left lung that looked like it had been there a long time. I saw some of the original CAT scans of my chest cavity, and the left lung was 2/3 full of infection. I have no idea how the doctor in Phoenix missed all that, or if it all just manifested in the three days between ER visits. In any case, I was going to be in the hospital for a while, and Trelina had a lot of calls to make.

1 comment:

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