I was trying to make the most out of my last few days of freedom before returning to school. I was cleaning out my pantry - I had half of its contents on my counter. And then I felt the need to sit down. An hour later, Mike walked in the door to find me in the bathroom, throwing up into the bathtub. And throwing up. And throwing up some more. Matter was exiting my body through every available orifice. I decided that a trip to the Emergency Room was in order.
Now, you must understand something. Up until Monday night, I had never, ever, been a patient in a hospital. I've somehow managed to walk upon this Earth for 24 years and never land in a hospital. I wasn't even BORN in a hospital (thanks for that, mom). I've always been pretty proud of that fact, so I must have been really, really sick for me to ask Mike to take me to a hospital. Actually it was more of a demand to quit checking my symptoms on WebMD and GET ME TO THE ER PRONTO! So after grabbing a puke bucket and my purse, we headed to my very first trip to a hospital.
I had actually been to the Leesburg hospital before, but not as a patient. When I was a camp counselor, I had a camper mangle her foot just before bedtime. My 18-year old, 130-pound self somehow managed to carry that 80-pound, bleeding, semi-conscious camper to the nurses' station. Then I had to accompany her to said hospital, where everyone thought I was her mom. But I digress.
I remember a few things from my previous visit to this hospital. First, the waiting room is not a pleasant place to be. Second, you have to go through something called "triage," where they determine how bad your situation is. Now, I can understand the logic behind this process, because you don’t want a guy having a heart attack to be waiting to be seen while a 7 year-old gets a few stitches because his little sister pushed him into a wall*. But when you feel bad enough to go to the Emergency Room, you already think your situation is pretty bad and want to be seen NOW...not "as soon as possible." I managed to help my situation along by having my husband answer the triage nurse's questions while I retched uncontrollably. We only had to wait about an hour and a half, according to my husband. He managed to find me a long chair, which a curled up in. That time period is a little hazy for me.
*this is a test to see if my brother actually reads my blog.
When we got called back, I got to change into one of those flattering hospital gowns. I didn't figure out that it tied in the back until AFTER I had to make a run for the bathroom. Luckily my husband had the foresight to run behind me and hold it closed. What a great guy!
A few hours later, it had been determined that I was indeed going to live, even if it was without the honor of being a Hospital Virgin. I was given 2 bags of fluids, released with a prescription, and told that no, I could not keep the flattering hospital gown. Mike drove me home, put me to bed, drove an hour to find a 24-hour pharmacy, and got back to the house about 1:00. He woke me up enough to shove the anti-nausea pill under my tongue and collapsed into bed. Before I fell asleep, I remember thinking, "it's finally over."
About 3:00, Mike started getting sick. And oh boy, if I didn't think that the night had gone bad before, it was definitely falling apart now. I stood outside the bathroom, listening to the man who had been and would be responsible for my care going through the same thing I was going through, and I feel apart. I panicked, knowing that I was not physically able to take care of him or even drive him to the hospital. So what did I do? I called my mommy. She helped me assess the situation, and it was determined that Mike was indeed miserable, but did not appear to have it as bad as I did and did not need to go to the hospital. He spent the rest of the early morning hours in one bathroom, while I spent them in the other bathroom. Boy am I grateful we don’t live in a one-bathroom apartment anymore.
This is not what I had in mind when I said I wasn’t ready to go back to school – which I will on Monday, by the way. It’s also not what I had in mind when I said I wanted to lose weight. I remember when Mike and I were engaged, that someone told me that the true test of our marriage would come when we both got sick at the same time. Well, we’ve managed to survive that test so far, so I guess we’ll make it!
We’ve slowly been recovering together, thanks in part to my mom, who brought us supplies, and my dad, who drove me to the doctor yesterday. We both are incredibly sore and sleep a lot, but we…made it!! We won’t be running any marathons soon, but we’ve decided that when this is all over, we’ll be celebrating with a trip to Five Guys Burgers and Fries. Yum.
Oh, and half of the contents of my pantry are still sitting on my counter. Just in case you were wondering.