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Three weeks in one blog entry

This is a blog entry I’ve been meaning to write all week, but when I started it on June 8th, I got no further than the title.

Anyway. So I had unexpected laparoscopic abdominal surgery late on May 11th/very early on May 12th to fix a strangulated intestinal hernia. I went home on May 12th, and all was well. Or so I thought. By Friday my post-op pain should have been getting better, but instead it seemed like it was only slightly better, and then stayed at a constant 4-5 on the pain scale. I called my surgeon, who prescribed more pain medication, and moved up my post-op appointment from the 28th to the 21st.

The following Wednesday, May 20th, the pain was actually a bit worse, so I once again called my surgeon, who instructed me to — you guessed it — go to the ER. We went to the ER, and I fully expected to be looked over, given a clean bill of crybaby health, and then sent on my way. Instead, after they took my vitals, administered medication (pain/nausea/fluids), did an X-ray and a CT scan, I was admitted. Now here’s the funny-but-not-so-funny part: we arrived at the ER around 7:00pm. Sometime around 1:00am it was determined that I would be admitted, but I only found this out via the patient portal – my ER “discharge” paperwork had “admit” on it for patient status. All this time as we sat in the ER, no doctor came in – just nurses every hour. And then patient transport showed up.

I was taken to a room sometime around 3:30am, and upon being put in the room I noticed “NPO” (roughly translated means no food, liquids, or medication by mouth) was written on the dry-erase board. At this point I kind of panicked and assumed admission + NPO meant my surgeon would be going back in to see what was going on – the X-ray and CT scan showed an ileus.

Fortunately, I was just admitted for observation and pain control, and by Thursday evening I managed to talk my surgeon out of keeping me for another night (it was determined that as a result of my surgeon accidentally “nudging” my large intestine during surgery, it wasn’t really doing what it was supposed to do and thus things were backed up; also, my small intestine was distended and full of air) and was able to go home. We rejoiced at 6:30pm when the official “okay” for discharge came, but the paperwork and final discharge didn’t actually take place until closer to 10pm. Blah.

That weekend — Memorial Day Weekend — should have been quiet and calm. I was still recovering from surgery, plus another hospitalization, Dan and I were both tired, the kids were stressed and spazzed out from all of the medical chaos, and my 19 year old brother was spending the weekend with us. And, we had a friend’s five year old spending the weekend with us as well.

Saturday started out fine, though EARLY – I popped up at 5:46am and couldn’t fall back asleep. Ryan and I went on a lost-cellphone-hunt in a nearby corn field (and found it!), and then the kids and I participated in a neighborhood yard sale. The rest of the day was a blur of weekend kid stuff.

Then, that evening, Dan’s mother showed up, unexpectedly, abruptly, and dare I say it, without a welcome. I won’t go into details publicly, but I will say this: she is mentally ill, she has a habit of going off her medication, and there are times when she goes off her medication AND goes on an alcohol binge – obviously the results of these behaviors can be pretty disastrous. She blew up and walked out on the woman who was trying to help her back in April, spent a week with us and then blew up on us (or rather, me) and stormed out when Dan and I made it clear that she couldn’t live with us and had to actively look for housing, and that was the last we heard from her – that was on April 23rd. So when she showed up on our doorstep on the evening of May 23rd, I was not happy. I flipped my shit, Dan flipped his shit, we ended up fighting, and I ended up driving an hour east to take the five year old back to her family; and then an hour and a half west to take my brother home, before going back home myself.

It was a really shitty weekend. I don’t wish Dan’s mother ill or harm, but I would like it very much if she would stay out of our lives and stay put in a shelter long enough to get the help with housing and long-term medical care that she needs. I feel even more strongly about this ever since the April incident, when she screamed all sorts of horrible obscenities at me because I dared to tell her to her face (politely, but directly) that she couldn’t live with us and couldn’t afford to be picky over renting a room or going to a shelter when she’s in a situation where she is homeless and has nowhere to go.

So anyway…that’s how the rest of May went. As I previously mentioned, my mom had gastric bypass on June 1st. She did really well, and is already down 16 pounds. Yay!


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