As I said in my Mennonite Monday post, last week was a little unusual due to a turn of events on Wednesday.
It all started a few weeks ago when Mike began having bad back pain. We assumed that it was due to harvest lifting and bouncing in the tractor and didn't think too much about it. The pain didn't go away, so Mike scheduled an appointment at the chiropractor on Friday, Oct. 29.
Last Tuesday (Oct 26) Mike was disking the Wally quarter near our house and wondered if I would bring him supper. Since I didn't have anything planned, I picked up Subway so we could eat while he drove. When I got to the field Mike said his back hurt and his stomach was hurting and he just wanted to finish the field and go home and relax.
He was only home about 15 minutes before he started vomiting. This lasted, on and off, for the next 3-4 hours. If throwing up wasn't bad enough, Mike could not find any place where he was comfortable due to the back and stomach pain. I called a few people, one being the hospital, and tried to get some advice about what we should do. At one point I asked Mike if he would consider a bath and he said he had actually been thinking about it. Mike hasn't taken a bath in a long time, probably long before we were even married or dating. The bath seemed to help relieve the pain and pressure, which helped and after his second time in the bathtub, the pain in his back had almost disappeared. This made it possible to sleep through the night.
In the morning, I offered make an appointment at the clinic since they had a 9:30 opening, but Mike thought the pain was better and decided to pass up the appointment. At 9:32 (it's funny the details I remember) he called me at work wanting me to schedule an appointment that day.
At 1:15 we met with Dr. Ohrt to discuss what was going on. Dr. Ohrt confirmed our thoughts that it may be a kidney stone or his appendix, so in order to be sure he wanted a blood and urine test. The urine test was clean, so we knew it wasn't kidney stones. However, his white blood count was slightly elevated, so it was possible that his appendix was causing the problems. The next step to know if it was the appendix for sure, was a CT scan, but with the cost of a CT scan being rather high, Dr. Ohrt suggested that Mike wait a couple hours. If the pain weakened we would not do the scan, but if it stayed the same or got worse, we would have the scan done.
At 4:15 we headed back to the clinic for the CT scan. It took about an hour to have the CT scan done by the time we did the paper work, got the iv and had the scan. Then the scan was emailed to Grand Island to be read. We waited in the CT room for a long time before we decided to move to the waiting room. As we came out of the CT room, Dr. Ohrt was already on the phone and the first words out of his mouth were "your having surgery." Mikes appendix was raging and had grown from the size of your pinky finger to the size of a hot dog, so it needed to come out as soon as possible. At 6 pm we found out that Mike would be having surgery at 7:30 pm, so we made a few calls and sent a few texts to let our family know and then Mike was busy for the next hour and a half getting ready for surgery. When he went back to surgery it was 7:50 and they said surgery would take 30 minutes to 2 hours. Since his back had been hurting so long, they were worried that the appendix had be smoldering back there and it may have exploded, which would have been bad making surgery longer. We were lucky, his appendix had not exploded and surgery lasted a little over an hour.
When Mike came out of surgery he was not in a good mood. Rightfully so. His main frustrations were his scratchy throat because he couldn't have any water to drink that soon after surgery and the things on his legs that reduced the chance of blood clots because they were hot and itchy. While I knew Mike was in pretty bad pain, I knew he would be okay when he asked for his phone less than 10 minutes after being moved into his room.
Mike stayed in the hospital until Friday morning and has made large strides healing ever since.
While you never want to have a reason to stay in the hospital, it was a good experience for me. Since I do the marketing for the facility, it was good to see the facility and how it worked and I was very very impressed by all of the employees, the service and the wonderful care we received.
I don't have any pictures of Mike in the hospital. To be honest, there were several times when I was looking at Mike in the hospital bed thinking I should probably take a picture of this for my blog, but it never felt appropriate, especially during the times he was in a lot of pain.
If anyone is still reading and this point, I want to thank you for reading this long long blog post, because you must really care about Mike and I, or you have nothing better to do. But on a serious note, thank you to everyone who stopped by at the hospital, called, sent a cards or gifts, or visited us at home. It was amazing to see the community of support that we have.