Sunday, August 19, 2007

I get cake, I get needles, I get to go to ER

Some say life is a rollercoaster. I think my rollercoaster is one of those with a giant drop followed by upside down corkscrews which makes you hurl.

Thursday morning I was super drugged up (40 mg of valium) preparing to get a whole bunch of blood tests done. I knew it was 30+. This was at a new lab and I was a little nervous (like biting the head off anyone who came near me for the last 24 hours nervous). Linda got me lying down on this huge furniture piece of wood with a cushioned top, and drawers all the way down and along. The lab tech/nurse came in. She knew I had needle phobia. I meanwhile was testing the bar screwed into the wall since the last time I had started pounding the wall and with the needle being inside me for so long, I thought I might have “issues”. In my tension I pushed the whole unit weighing a couple hundred pounds about six inches with my arm. I think that made the tech look at me different (like, “Call for the nets and tranquilizer gun” ala Wild Kingdom different).

Let’s cut it short and say it got done. How exactly I am not sure but she filled 14 vials of blood. Afterward, so high as a kite, I was not only slurring my words but when Linda tried to transfer me back to the wheelchair I was more intent on giving her hickeys. And in between that I was face planting into her breasts. I think the tech said something about a “big baby” but only until she realized that what was drawing me to hang all over Linda wasn’t a need for the maternal exactly (why does my libido go up so high when I am drugged?). Transferring someone while they try to give you a hickey on the neck is no easy feat.

At home, I slept, then went down to the video store where, like a person with absolutely no inhibition, I got ALL the DVD’s that looked interesting (literally 15 DVD’s). I only stopped because I ran out of money.

Then I went back to sleep.

That night, Linda and I got dressed and went out to celebrate 14 years together. Linda would not help me dress as I wanted (some comment about getting there before the restaurant closed) so I did a “goth lite” with the bare essentials. At the Italian restaurant there was a wedding party in another room who was serenaded by a staff member. I asked if they did anniversaries. Next thing you know there is this lush Italian-Canadian mezzo soprano singing an operatic German love song to us with great presentation (“years in musical theatre” she told us later). Canada has it’s issues, defaults, hang-ups, deficiencies and problems but hey, where else do you get opera and a free cake when you tell the staff you are celebrating your same sex anniversary instead of the manager telling you “No touching, this is a family restaurant.”

I’m not going to say what went on when we got home except to say that it put me in the hospital. Well, maybe that was a coincidence. Let’s say that night was a bright light in a VERY bleak week. And that by the next afternoon I would be “rescued”, I would wake up in a strange hospital and be admitted to ER. Bad news: I urinated myself and was left in my wet jeans for the entire time. Good news: The EMT crew didn’t want their blankets back.

I’ll try to tell you about that adventure tomorrow. I just wanted to let you know that I am still around, not kicking exactly, but complaining enough to be a pain in the tuckus.

One preview, I told the head nurse that I had been getting some crap from a couple EMT guys (like whispering insults in my ear when I couldn’t move or speak). She asked some details. She wanted to know everything blow by blow. I told her about my being unable to speak but they put a pen and paper in my hand. Surrounded by four (was it six) EMT guys dragging me off yet again to who knows where (since I was barely conscious). One nice ER guy kept asking me, “What is the problem? What is your number one compliant?” I slowly drew on the page. E.....M.....T......S.

The head nurse covered her face and had to leave my curtained area she was laughing so hard. “They would not like that.” She told me.

Wow...I am almost feeling bad....wait.....nope...sorry. The feeling went away.


GayProf said...

Congrats on 14 years! I haven't done anything for 14 years in a row.

The EMTS thing made me laugh.

Daisy said...

Canada has it’s issues, defaults, hang-ups, deficiencies and problems but hey, where else do you get opera and a free cake when you tell the staff you are celebrating your same sex anniversary instead of the manager telling you “No touching, this is a family restaurant.”

All that and medical marijuana too! Sounds GREAT!

Congratulations on 14 years together. :)

Donimo said...

Wow, what an intense week you've had. Roller coaster, indeed. Did you see the sign specifying how tall you needed to be to board this particular ride? Sullen teenagers are in charge of loading people onto high velocity rides at amusement parks...perhaps the Fates are the same. Yeah, whatever, give me your ticket, off you go.

I'm glad you hung on tight and got some cake as well. Cake always helps, in my opinion.

Congratulations on your 14th year together, that's fabulous. I am in a relationship (9 years now) and I think that when one (or both) of the partners has a significant disability, the counting of of years should be something like the way they count a dog's years: each one together is the equivalent of several years in an abled bodied relationship.I don't mean that in a negative way... I think we have lots of stuff to deal with and life becomes more intense and bully for us when we stay together and thrive.

Daniel, the Guy in the Desert said...

I don't think I've ever ingested 40 mg's of valium. I'm a little envious.

Congratulations on 14 years together!

I start thinking anniversary on the third date.

cheryl said...

First - Congrats on 14 years!

Second - I am absolutely appalled at the lack of professionalism and compassion displayed by the EMT's you have encountered. I was an EMT for a number of years and those guys would have lost their jobs if they acted that way on my crew.

All EMTs have what we call frequent flyers. These are patients that we see regularly due to their health issues. Those patients should be treated with the same professionalism and courtesy as any other patient. Seems like the jerks who you encounter don't seem to remember that they are assisting a Human Being. These guys need to be reported and reprimanded.

Elizabeth McClung said...

gayprof: well, it's just like breathing, just in the same space as someone else.

Daisy: working on that medical dope - thanks.

Domino: Yeah, most people were like "You're going to stay with her?" when I became disabled - classy.

Daniel: Most I've ever had for one needle was 60 mg I think.

Cheryl: You have to understand that probably 3/4 or more of the EMT's I meet are very nice - unfortunately mostly male. I have a condition with has most people including specials going "How is it possible for you have this with that" - for instance, when EMT's arrive I will have no pulse in my extremities, they will be cold and clammy and my face with be slightly green yet the oxy reader will be 98% - Or as the doctor's say, "How can you have a heart problem, nerve decay AND a thyroid and adrenal abnormal readings ALL at the same time?" So a few of the EMT's have decided I am either a faker, an attention seeker or who knows what (a psych case) and don't bother to hide their distain. So while I have a good EMT saying "If you have ANY pain or problems, you call us, that is what we are paid for." As soon as he leaves Mr. Goatee leans over and says, "You're the problem" - now, do you want to call them back? Also, I haven't called 911 in 5 months - I can't help it if people get twitchy.

But the EMT's here seem particularly cowboy from my observation in ER waiting bays - they have nicknames for all the "frequent fliers" and I have watched them verbally or even physically abuse them if they think they are drunk or stoned. Since it is a small city, I seem to get the same 8 or 10 guys (2 of which are total jerks). The afternoon I was admitted a "frequent flier" was left strapped to a guerney outside for five hours (he was still there when I left), the EMT's had amused themselves by seeing how many face masks they could put on him. If you can think of a medical reason for putting multiple face masks on someone - please, let me know.