Stop the world I want to get off….

If only….

I don’t think I can imagine things being much more nuts than they have been this month.

So where did we leave off? Chris was feeling better Wednesday night and they discharged him Thursday, and his parents brought him home. His sister came and stayed with him, while I drove Janet down to catch transport back to the city.

Thursday night, the pain started again. His sister said she would stay up with him so I could get some sleep. He spent all night pacing and groaning and finally fell asleep about 5 a.m. in the recliner. The pain continued to escalate through the morning and she finally took him back to Markdale – one more time.

The doctor in emergency determined he was dehydrated, and started IV, while arranging for a CT scan and consult in Owen Sound. Now here comes the only moderately humourous part of all this (to me….not to Chris!!). As a result of all this, and not eating enough fibre or drinking enough water Chris had…how shall we say it… a “blockage”. It took a $3 million machine to say he was full of it…**I** could have told them that for nothing!!!

So they sent him home Friday night with a cure for the “blockage” – CitroMag. If anyone else has ever needed to take this stuff to prepare for a colonoscopy you know its power. Lets just say don’t stray more than 30 seconds from a bathroom.

It started working Friday night and Saturday morning he was once again throwing up blood. I wanted to take him back to the hospital, but we reached a compromise. He would take his prescribed proton pump inhibitor (stops the acid production) and if he threw up blood again would agree to go to the hospital.

He seemed to be getting better yesterday, and this morning once again threw up blood, so we headed up to Owen Sound one more time. Once again he was dehydrated, and his hemoglobin levels had dropped since Friday so they performed another EDG to determine the source of the bleeding. When I left he was resting semi-comfortably at the hospital.

Add to this – the person I hired to come and look after the dogs called to tell me she fell 10 minutes after we talked this afternoon to confirm our arrangements, and she broke 3 ribs so can’t do the work.

Perhaps it was destiny that I chose to bring Robin Sharma’s “The Greatness Guide” to read at the hospital today, because I’m not as stressed about all this as I might otherwise be. I left off reading when they brought Chris back to the room after surgery with a chapter where he states – “Challenge serves beautifully to introduce you to your best – and most brilliant – self.”

I needed those words today.

A little sunshine on the horizon….

When I talked to Chris last night he sounded a little brighter and was off narcotics. This is a good thing. He actually ate the “lite” dinner they brought and has been working on a case of Plus calorie meal replacements.

Leave it to Chris….he found a computer with unsecured access in the hospital and I got an email with a link to the Community Care Access Centre for “Central West” and we are in their region!!


See the little tiny triangle in the most north-west corner of the map formed by the road going north-east and the road going north-west? Thats us! (and our neightbours).

Even looking at the CCAC site I can’t find this map – but as I said, leave it to Chris! Hopefully now we can arrange the home care and as long as the combination of medications holds the pain to tolerable levels he can come home 🙂

Also, some dog related good news. Libby finished her Canadian Championship in style this weekend. Not only going WB for two points (she needed one), but also defeating the Specials bitch for Best of Opposite. I’ll post the picture when I get a breather to scan it.

The hospital saga continues….

So just how many hospital emergency rooms can you visit in one week? Let’s see….

Part 1 – Owen Sound

Continuing from last Sunday morning, Chris has been able to manage liquids – more specifically Ensure – the protein shakes given to build up cancer patients. They removed him from IV’s once he was drinking adequate liquids and they concentrated on the junk coming out of his gall bladder – pretty yucky stuff.

On Wednesday they performed another ERCP and removed the stent that they had put in his liver back in May. So they watched him Thursday, and Friday an hour after his last dose of pain medication released him and sent him home with antibiotics and no pain medication. His father brought him home since he was in the area, and when I got here he looked like a walking skeleton. 🙁

I managed to get some juice and toast and Ensure into him, but he was starting to show increasing pain again hour by hour.

Add to this….he was supposed to have home care arranged to change his dressings and flush the drain. They called and said “You are out of our area, we can’t do it.”

Yes we are … by 4 KILOMETERS. That is 2.4 miles for you non-metric folks. See the little Google marker in the Pink area? That Pink area is Dufferin County. See all the Blue? Two roads south-west, two roads north-east, ONE road north-west?? That is GREY County…they don’t cross borders 🙁

Part 2 – Markdale

At 11:30 p.m. the paramedics came and took Chris back to Markdale (where this all started 5-1/2 months ago. Back onto the IV pain medication – more blood tests. There is very little on Chris arms that has not been poked by IV or bloodwork over the past two weeks. 🙁

At 8:45 a.m. I spoke with him and he was more settled, but did not know what their plans were. I had an appointment at 9 – I said I would call him afterwards. At 9:30 I call and he’s been discharged and sent home by taxi. I called Dundalk taxi – they never received a call. I called Markdale taxi – them either. I call the hospital – no he’s not sitting there.

It turns out that after removing him from I.V. medication they let him out to WALK to the drugstore and get a prescription filled, after which he called a taxi himself since he didn’t have his cell phone to call me (which is a long distance call).

He was home for all of four hours – the pain started get worse again, even after the oral pain medication. At just about my wits end at this point I called Tele-Health. The purpose of this is to have nurses tell you if you should or should not head to a hospital or what treatments can be suggested at home. I have to admit it is a decent system. After explaining to him (it was a male nurse) all the history and explaining that we couldn’t get a home care nurse he said “Take him to Orangeville”. And so….

Part 3 – Orangeville

I had avoided taking Chris to Orangeville from the beginning because OV is a more major centre. I have to admit that in Markdale, it is very unlikely that you will not see a doctor within 15 minutes of arrival, unless there is a major catastrophe (Chapman’s Ice Cream factory is the major employer in town and there is not much likelihood it would blow up).

I took a chance taking him to Owen Sound because the surgeon who was dealing with him all along has his office there, but he really only got in because we arrived at a slow period (5 a.m.)

However, no matter when you arrive at OV you are going to wait…and wait…and wait. And that is just to see the triage nurse. They had a notice up that non-urgent cases could expect a minimum wait time of 4 hours – thats for sprains and breaks and kids with sniffles. Admittedly, once he did see the triage nurse they got him into a bed fairly quickly in emergency. Once again on IV drugs, and they got the dressing changed and the drain flushed. However, once again, when the pain was settled they were ready to send him home. About that point **I** broke down and said I just could not take another run to the hospital in 3 or 4 hours. Maybe she felt sorry for me – but the doctor put in a referral to the surgeon, and they’ve kept him overnight. Today? who knows?

More of the saga as it unfolds…..

I am headed off to pick up Chip & Libby from Colin, and then to pick up Janet. Another fun week begins!