On Wednesday afternoon, I saw my primary care physician, who prescribed antibiotics and a CAT scan of my abdomen. The pills took care of the pain, which I was quite happy about, and I had the CAT scan scheduled for Friday around noon. They took the pictures, and the tech saw something funny, and had the radiologist look at it. After that, they sent me straight over to Admissions. I was going to get a vacation, starting immediately, possibly with a side of surgery.
The information bounced around like rumors of who’s running for President. Micro-perforations. Perforations. Diverticulitis. Exploratory surgery. Full surgery. The possibility of wearing a colostomy bag for a few months.
After the young doctors and the residents got out of the way, the wise old doctor gave me the real news. There is a perforation, and it’s bigger than micro. It’s a 3 or 4 on a scale of 10. And yes, we’re keeping you in the hospital, and no, we’re not planning on surgery. Yet.
The official word was that they were keeping me for observation. Unofficially, they were keeping me in so that my bowel could relax some, and the perforation could heal. To that goal, they kept me off food and water. Then they added ice cubes to my allowed list. Then they added clear liquids, and that was my Saturday food list. Sunday they added all liquids (tomato soup never tasted so good. And the chocolate pudding from a can was to die for!!).
Monday they took a new CAT scan, and they must have liked what they saw. I was released, and also upgraded to a low-fiber diet. I celebrated with a cheeseburger, fries, and a chocolate chip cookie.
I’m on a new antibiotic, and it has strong side effects. I’m going to be working at home, where the bathroom is a short ways down the hall, instead of going in to work where it’s about seven hallways away.
Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers and visits. It was a strange day last Friday, but I was in the right place for people to recognize a problem and take care of it. If the perforation would have been on the open side of my intestine instead of on the blood vessel side, I might not be here to write this up. And it was very strange to come home and see my PC sitting just the way I left it Friday morning, when I was interrupted. And I thought that it would look the same way if I had a heart attack or a stroke, instead of an enforced vacation. The same question as I had last week appears: Am I ready to go?
If I was at my funeral listening to the fancy words, would I be happy, humble, or ashamed? I don’t think that I am worthy of God’s sacrifice (nobody is – we cannot earn salvation). I still want to live more intentionally, and include Jesus as a part of everything. I mentioned Jesus to my roommate Friday night in the hospital, and he deflected the talk onto the atrocities that Jesus suffered instead of talking about The Man. I offered him a place to discuss Jesus, and he declined. Fair enough – his choice. That was the first time I engaged somebody, and I tried to be gentle, and we did discuss lots of other things afterward. But discussing the person of Jesus seemed to be off-limits. And I left it all in God’s hands.