By Sigrid Fowler
All writers in Op Ed are here to inform and acknowledge issues of importance to our communities, however these writings represent the views and opinions of the authors and not necessarily of The Advertiser.
How many of you thought that I was in jail and that is why I wasn’t writing? How many of you thought that I was on some glamorous trip? How many of you thought that I had won the lottery and just disappeared? How many of you thought that the FBI and or the KGB got me? How many of you thought that I was abducted by aliens? How many of you hoped that I would never write again? Well, I hate to disappoint everyone, but none of those things happened.
How many of you know about alternate universes or falling through the rabbit hole? On Monday, March 21, I entered an alternate universe and it is all Tom’s fault. He went to lunch with his friend D. They solved the world’s problems and on the way home Tom started to vomit all over D’s car and himself. They called me from the car and reported that Tom was really sick. “Okay, I said to myself. Probably food poisoning.” They pull into the driveway and true to their words; Tom throws up on the driveway. I get him into the house and get him undressed. Pepto comes out of the cupboard. Ten minutes later, Tom says “call an ambulance. I think I am having a heart attack.”
Kudos to Edgefield Ambulance service! They were fast and professional. What a relief when they whisked him away to AU Health Emergency Room. Here comes the rabbit hole and I never saw it coming. The whole hospital was full; there were no empty rooms anywhere, including the E.R. We waited in chairs for hours while they ran tests and did x-rays, ultra-sounds, and cat-scans. Finally we graduated to a recliner in the hallway. Late that night he got a room in the E.R. The next day he was admitted to the hospital. He “graduated” to the Intensive Care Unit a day or two later. Please take note that I have not told you what was wrong with him yet. That is because they only had theories at this time.
Poor Tom he was a flat out mess and in no shape to fight his own battles so much to the medical professionals that left it up to me and I fight dirty. First of all there is not just one doctor that is in charge of his care. There is a team of doctors and I did not know any of them and had not seen any of them. Two arrogant men finally showed up (after I made a little fuss) to tell me that Tom was suffering from necrotizing pancreatitis. I rolled that around my brain cells for a second because I have to admit, I had not heard that before and king of the arrogant decides that he needs to define the words to me. Okay, I lost it. “In other words, Tom’s pancreas is dying.” My school teacher came out and I said, “Not in the truest sense of these words, it just means that the pancreas is inflamed and some of it is dying or has died. What I would like to know is how much has died, is it continuing to die and what is being done to prevent more from dying? And if you were me what questions would you be asking?” He had no answers to my questions. After that interview I put a sign on Tom’s doorway that said “Warning! Wife is surly.” I thought it only fair.
We are home now. I think I am back in real time and not hospital time (universe). Tom is recovering slowly. If you need help fighting arrogant dragons, just let me know—it was refreshing in an odd way.