Desperate for material.

April 22, 2007

Journal, Lauren, Lloyd, Worst day ever

As we’ve joked the past couple of days, “We’ll do anything for a good post!”  No pictures today, but many more to follow!

Where to start? First of all, Lloyd’s ok. (Sounds ominous, eh?)  Let’s begin with what we’ve told countless nurses, aides, physicians’ assistants and a doctor. 

As you know, Lloyd’s been sick with a cold for a couple of weeks, and he had a fever last… Tuesday?  Anyway, Thursday night he had some mild chest pain around midnight, but it went away by 2:00.  (He didn’t wake me up.)  Friday morning his chest started to hurt as he was driving in to school.  He didn’t have his cell phone, so he was trying to figure out the safest way to drive off the road should something happen.  At school, he wondered if it might be gas, so some co-workers offered some Tums and soda.  It went away by 9:00, so that was that  (He told me about it after school.)

Friday night I awoke at 2:15 to Lloyd sitting by the bed and saying, “Lauren, you need to come downstairs and sit with me.”  (Now THAT’S a shot of adrenline.)  We sat in the dining room while he drank some pop – I offered baking soda water, since I’ve watched lots and lots of medical shows.  Finally he put his head on the table, and we decided to go to the emergency room.  “Better safe than sorry” and all that.

We went, and they were very kind and helpful.  Lloyd got hooked up for an EKG, had an i.v. port put in, had oxygen pumped into his nose, had a chest x-ray, and got some blood drawn.  (Lloyd did not pass out!  Usually he’s kind of a woozy guy with that.)  We kept thinking, “It’s probably just gas.”  Well, they said that some heart enzyemes were pretty high, so they were going to send us to Lincoln.  We thought we’d just drive ourselves in, but the P.A. shook her head and said, “No. You’re really sick. I’m surprised you don’t feel a lot worse.”  They said it was probably pericarditis, and inflamation of the sac around his heart, probably caused by his cold virus.  Lloyd had to take an ambulance.  By they way, it arrived around 5 a.m., and by this time he was feeling fine.  These episodes just last about two hours.

I went home to get the car that had enough gas to get to Lincoln, Lloyd’s toothbrush and some extra clothes, and – of course – the camera.  (Don’t think we’re morbid, but we’ve joked that if anything super-serious should happen to one of us, the other one has to make a post about it.)  Unfortunately we can’t load pictures yet, but perhaps this evening or tomorrow we can.)

Lloyd rode in, I followed, we arrived at St. Elizabeth around 6 a.m.- a very nice facility!  He had all the same tests over again, minus the x-ray, and waited to hear from the doctor.  We had to wait quite a long time, because it was Saturday and there was only one cardioloist on duty.  He was probably helping people who were in big trouble, so it wasn’t too hard to be patient.  We sat around, had people come in and do the same tests, and around 4 p.m. we met with the doctor briefly  A bit later, Lloyd had his first dose of actual medicine – the experimental wonder drug….. Motrin!  We joked with the nurse that we weren’t sure about Lloyd taking such strong medication.  Whatever.

We were pretty tired all day and tried to nap, but people kept wanting to take Lloyd’s blood away.  Annette and her family were coming into Lincoln and we asked if she could bring Lloyd’s keys and his papers to grade.  I got his laptop from school and we had a pretty nice setup  When Lloyd took a shower he had to pull 23 sticky tabs off his chest, and 2 from his ankles. He ate the hospital food without complaint, and we went to sleep around 10:30.

An hour later I woke up to him calling the nurse because the pain was back, but not as severe.  It took a while for them to come in.  Anyway, someone came to draw some blood and the nurse said they needed to run ‘a complete set of tests – he hasn’t had the three blah blah blah test since he’s been here!’.  Then they gave him morphine – just like on M.A.S.H.!

We actually got some sleep after that, though they stole his blood again in the night.  It’s been fascinating watching his heart rate and blood pressure change throughout the day and night.  So, a nutshell, he’s just fine 93% of the time, and a mess 7%.  We’re hoping to leave today, but we’ll have to talk with the doctor today.  We’ll keep you “posted”!

A sweet side note – they play a snippet of a lullaby over the intercom whenever a baby is born, and seven babies have been born while we’ve been here!

So, Brad, I guess this trumps Amsterdam, huh?


About Lauren

Lauren Sommerer is a preschool teacher who likes to build prototypes, grow cats, cook things once, save money, reduce, reuse and recycle.

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11 Responses to “Desperate for material.”

  1. Brad Said on:

    You DO go to crazy lengths for a post! Now what kind of exotic medical condition am I going to have to get to top THAT? Criminy!

    I can’t wait for the pictures. I bet Lloyd on morphine is a hoot!


    • Lloyd Said on:

      Man, that morphine was fast. I bet it was less than 10 seconds from shooting it into the IV until no pain at all.


  2. Peggy Said on:

    Geez, what kind of outing did you have planned for Saturday Lauren, that caused Lloyd to go this route to get out of it?

    But seriously keep us posted! Get well Lloyd! Your students need you!


    • Lloyd Said on:

      I’m thinking that I’m going to send Lauren over to school to get a video camera and tape a lesson. The nurses say that there’s a great conference room that I can use, and we all agree that it will be a much better effect if I’m dragging the IV stand around behind me as I teach.


  3. Kristi Said on:

    This is a sick and warped way to spend “Lauren’s Day of Fun.”


    • Lloyd Said on:

      Yeah, I’ll do next to anything to get out of playing a ukulele. I asked Lauren on Friday if she wanted to throw a backpack together and come into Lincoln and we would continue into Omaha, spend the night and go to her ukulele get together. We would have, but Lauren had a meeting Saturday morning. It would have been worse to be in Omaha. Much Worse. They have vampires in Omaha.


  4. Michele Said on:

    If I weren’t a Lutheran school teacher and a good Christian woman, I would type some of the bad words that immediately crept into my head as I read your post! Yikes! I can’t think of anything witty to comment, nor do I want to. I will continue to pray for both of you. I appreciate the seriousness of your situation, your desire to still accomplish teacher tasks while in the hospital, and the frustration you must feel with needing to get a substitute for a few days. I’m sure Brad is longing to be there with you as well. It’s just awful when someone you love is hurting and so far away. Peace be with you both these next few days.


    • Lloyd Said on:

      Thanks Michele. I don’t think I really got the seriousness of things until after the heart catherization(sp). I’ll probably be here until Tuesday or Wednesday, then we’ll see. But I imagine I’ll keep joking about it. Too many good jokes in here to let them slip away.


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