Monday, July 16, 2018

The Emergency That Wasn't...Or Was It?

It's been a couple of weeks since my last post, and even longer, I think, since I've made regular comments on any of the blogs I regularly follow. It's been a real crapfest. First, I fell and tore my rotator cuff. Then, last week, there was a major emergency. Collin's blood pressure, for a long time under control, suddenly wasn't. It started to climb...higher...higher, until it reached numbers that fell under the heading of hypertensive crisis.

Heart disease and stroke run in our family. Okay, they're the family curse, the trifecta (along with diabetes) nobody wants. I called our primary care doctor. She wanted me to get him to the emergency room. She didn't have to tell me twice. Our dear friend Cathy picked us up and drove us there. He was checked in at 7:30 in the evening--but wasn't actually examined until 1:00am.

This is why I hate hospitals. One of the reasons, anyway.

I'd tried to get him to go to Urgent Care earlier that day, but he was stubborn. (I wonder where he gets that?) He had a meeting involving tech for his new work from home job, and he wasn't risking losing that job for some minor thing like a potential stroke. (Yes, I'm being sarcastic.)

So there we were, in a standing room only waiting room...waiting...and waiting...and waiting. People were called, but not Collin. I kidded him about it. I told him they weren't calling names when they came out--they were just looking at him and saying, "Not you."

10:00: "Not you...."

10:30: "Not you...." 

11:00: "Not you...." 

11:30: "Not you...." 

Midnight: "Not you...."

Collin's blood pressure was dangerously high, but apparently that didn't constitute a real emergency. The people in the waiting room with chest pains, potential heart attacks, also not that important. To my knowledge, there were no gunshot what did qualify as a true emergency situation?

Several times, I told Cathy she should go home. It looked to be a long night, and she had to go to work the next day. She didn't want to leave us there, so she stayed. Finally, at around 12:30, she said if he wasn't called by 1:00, she would go ahead and leave. I turned to Collin. "I'll bet you don't get called by 1:00," I told him.

"I'll take that bet," he said confidently.

At 12:55, as Cathy was getting ready to leave, Collin got up and went up to the admissions desk. Within a couple of minutes, he was taken back to a room and prepped for observation.

I didn't think of it until the next day, but he'd gotten them to take him before 1:00. That snake had cheated his way into a win on the bet!

But it was an emergency. For the next five hours, he was monitored. The blood pressure cuff on his left arm checked his blood pressure automatically every ten minutes. An ECG checked his heart and his oxygen was continually tested. I sat with him and prayed. I don't think I could survive losing him. I've always wondered how any parent could deal with the loss of a child. I had to bury both of my parents. That was painful enough. It still is. 

At around 4:00, he was given a pill. It was expected that his blood pressure would return to normal in about thirty minutes. It didn't. At 6:00, he was given another drug. He drifted off to sleep for a little while. I went to use the bathroom. When I returned, he was awake, sitting up and smiling. He gave me the thumbs up as the monitor was being disconnected. 

My prayers had been answered.

We both realized we were ravenously hungry, so we went to the hospital cafeteria for breakfast, then got a Lyft home. We both slept off and on the rest of the day. He's back to normal now. I think it's going to take me a while longer....



  1. Collin's guardian angels are on patrol! Probably cause they know you love him so much!

    1. By the time that night was over, God may have been tired of hearing from me!

  2. That qualifies as an emergency! Fortunately it was resolved to satisfaction.

    1. So far, he's doing really well. But we still don't know what caused it to go so high. Dr. B. ordered some blood tests--which Collin hasn't had yet in spite of my nagging!

  3. I wonder why it went so high ? Also I would have said something to the effect " his blood pressure is (the #} do you want him to have a stroke here on your floor. This makes me so mad.
    I am glad you both are better now !

    cheers, parsnip

    1. They put an IV tube in his arm and sent him back to the waiting room for five hours. I couldn't believe it. I was there in December for an infection in one finger, and I was in and out in half an hour. Go figure.

  4. What a fright for you both Norma. Blood pressure is a scary business. Hopefully Collin will now have the correct medication to control it.. take it easy both of you xox

    1. The last pill they gave him in the ER had a sedative in it. Not surprising--when my dad's blood pressure got out of control, tranquilizers always got it back to normal.

  5. Replies
    1. He's doing pretty well now. Hopefully we'll know more when he sees the doctor again.

  6. Oh my goodness. I missed this post. Hope things are better now that July is well behind us.


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