Monday, August 23, 2010
Nurses were coming at me from all directions, asking questions, taking my vitals and then came the i.v.. I was so afraid of needles that in public school I had to be held down on the floor in the nurse's room just to be given a shot. That was years before but the fear never went away. I felt so stupid having to hold my mom's hand through it, but that was the only way they were going to get that needle in me. It didn't help that I was so dehydrated, so it took more than one try to get a keeper. To this day, after 24 years of dealing with this "Monster" I still freak out when the letters I and V are used too close together.
My Gastro had ordered all of these things to be done to me before he could come up and check me out for himself. I had x-rays, an ultrasound and thought I saw every inch of the hospital that first day. When he arrived he looked kind of sad. He said I was really sick and that I was going to have to stay for a while for more tests. I looked at my overnight bag and knew I hadn't packed enough. He still wasn't sure what it was that was wrong, but was leaning really strongly towards "Crohn's". The colonoscopy that was moved up from two weeks away would diagnosis whatever it was.
I started to try and tell him that I really didn't need to be there, that I could just take some time off work and rest, and that I would eat my veggies, and even wheaties if that would help, if I could just go home. I still remember his face when I was rambling on like a terrified little kindergardener. He just smiled at me. It was a beautiful smile, but it pissed me off. He said I had to be fed through a tube in my nose because I was malnourished, and I was in the best place I could be. How could being fed through a tube or being in the hospital be the best place for me? I even tried to tell him that I thought I was pretty sure I was all better, but he wouldn't have any of it, just smiled that white smile, said he would be right back and left the room.
The funny thing about the whole freaking out session that I had, was that I do remember calming down enough for a minute to comment to my mom on how good-looking he was. But hey! I was still a girl. When he did come back he had gloves on, was followed by two nurses carrying a whole bunch of freaky-looking packages, and started unwrapping them. I saw a tube of lubricant and was wondering what that was for, when he started to rub some of it on this pink tubing. A nurse was trying to put a straw in my mouth from a glass of water which distracted me long enough for him to get the tube near my nose. I looked him straight in the eyes and asked if it was going to hurt. Of course he said no, it just might be a bit uncomfortable for a minute. I drank the water as he pushed it into my nose and down my throat into my stomach. The look on my mom's face told me I was lucky I wasn't watching. I gagged a few times, but he just kept on smiling. Finally it was taped in place, I was hooked up to my pump and my first meal was being served.
He said I had been through enough for one day, and told me that I could relax now and that he would come back to see me the next day. One of the nurse's gave me a shot for pain, which I had to hold my mom's hand for again, and as she left the room I remember saying to them "If he wasn't so cute I wouldn't have stayed".
But that first night, alone in my room, it dawned on me that this man had probably just saved my life.