Janet is home from the hospital!

You may wonder if this is an old email or what is going on.

Well, briefly, Sunday, Jan 9, Janet had a stomach ache after eating. This has been common since surgery, but this one was worse and kept her from sleeping.

The ever-perceptive Dave slept soundly until 2AM before asking if she was OK. From 2AM on there were many phone calls to the ’24 hr nurse line’ from her health insurance company.

Somehow we thought that meant that we could talk with a nurse any time, night or day. However, the typically 60 minute waits for them to return my call made us repeatedly wonder if the ’24 hour’ part referred to how soon they would call back. Americans are familiar with the now shortened message when they call an important phone number and need urgent tech support, etc.

It used to say, “Your call is very important to us, so we went to Walmart and bought this cheap answering machine so we don’t need to be bothered.” But, that did not seem to go over well, so they shortened it to, “Your call is very important to us. Please listen carefully as our menu options have changed.”

But back to Janet, her oncologist, who we called at 6AM saw her at 10AM and said no worries. You may have a Small Bowel Obstruction. (That is an obstruction of the Small Bowel, not a Small Obstruction of the Bowel.) Just wait and it will usually go away.

Does this remind you of the song about “put the lime in the coconut” where she wakes up her doctor and he tells her, “Put the lime in the coconut, and call me in the mo-o-ornin’ “?

Anyway, she was to keep suffering and not worry unless she vomited or got a fever.

We went home and she was able to sleep at times, but about 6PM she flew out of bed and ran to the porcelain throne with projectile vomiting. Next stop the Emergency Room.

This makes about 6 or 8 times since Sept that Dave has been there with Jessie or Janet. Have you ever heard the term “Munchhausen by proxy”? They don’t seem to have heard it at this ER. We are now on first name basis with the staff.

They did various things and put a tube down her nose and pumped her stomach to relieve the pressure, and reduce the struggle to the bowel. That was something that she won’t soon forget. And the tube stayed there, in her nose until Thursday. Not fun. At about 5AM on Tue, they admitted Janet to the hospital.

We both were pretty tired and Dave went home and got some much needed sleep. 3 hours in 48 is no fun.

But, the Happy Ending is, Janet came home about 1030PM Thursday and we slept in to 830AM Fri. A record for us in recent months. The photo is when Janet had just had the stomach tube removed Thursday morning and was told that she could order ‘full liquids’. Yummy things like cream of wheat, and grits, cream soups, etc. A big improvement over ‘nothing by mouth’ and later ‘clear liquids’ like apple juice.

At 11AM Friday, she still feels wonderful and is gently eating ‘normal food’.


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