The gall of it all

Yesterday morning, I woke up unusually hungry. I honestly can’t think of the last time I actually woke up hungry. Also dead tired, but that’s another matter. Breakfast was small, one egg and coffee, which I hoped would be enough.

By 9:30, though, the pains were back, and I tried to eat again. Nothing fancy, just a rice cake with some peanut butter. It only kind of worked. A half hour later, hunger had turned to real pain.

Things only went downhill from there.

By noon, the pain had become that I had to stop working (I was working from home) and go lie down — I simply couldn’t concentrate. But lying down did nothing. There wasn’t a single position that in anyway abated the pain.

Alex gave me Ovol. Nothing. She got me ginger ale. Nothing. I, for laughs, induced vomiting. Nothing at all. Acetaminophen had no effect, either. I figured it was time to call Alberta HealthLink and get an opinion. The call was short, but clear: get to a hospital ASAFP.

That was the hard part. Alex had an appointment, and had to work, so I was supposed to be the parent at home. One car. No easy way to pick up and run. I thought I’d just hold out until Alex was back, and go then.

My body, however, had other ideas. The pain was worsening. On a scale of 1-10 (1 effectively being nothing; 10 being the most unimaginable pain), I was around a 7. And climbing. I started to get light-headed and found it hard to breathe. I couldn’t walk or stand without hot pokers in my belly. I had no choice. Instead of calling a taxi, though, I called 911.

Thankfully, the kids didn’t register that Daddy was in trouble, and our awesome neighbour Amber appeared moments later to take them to her place. The ambulance arrived as the kids were crossing the lawn.

Three techs (one was a student) unloaded a barrage of questions. I hoped it might all be resolved there. But I found myself on the stretcher in the ambulance (I walked out myself), turning into a human pincushion. I got morphine and suddenly all was right with the world.

Despite a quick check-in, I sat in the waiting room for over two hours before a doc could talk to me. Pokes, prods, IVs, and blood and urine tests later, it was inconclusive. Either a problem with my pancreas, or it was my appendix. The resident nearly pushed his hand through to my kidney to get a sense of things.

I went home. I had crackers, apple sauce, and ginger ale. I didn’t feel much better.

The first Tylenol3 was at roughly 1am, along with a Gravol. It kind o helped. But by 4:00, it was clear that my abdomen needed additional attention. Back to Rockyview.

More pokes. More prods. But the answer seems, well, textbook (according to the doc who saw me: appendicitis. So textbook, in fact, that I’m bypassing more tests.

So, for now, I’m waiting for surgery. We’ll see how it goes.

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