Whew!! This has been one of "those" weeks.
She's been miserable with the lingering low-grade fever, frequent diarrhea, and several other things. We'd neither of us slept much at all for three nights, last night included, and the alarm went off at 04:30. We dragged out of the bed and got ready, made the 15-mile trip to the gastroenterologist's office in a nearby town. The original appointment was for 11:30, but they'd had cancellations and called yesterday to move the time to 07:00, with a warning to come early to sign papers, etc. etc. So we left home around 06:10, got there about 06:35. And sat and sat until 07:10. Oh, and they never asked for the printed-out list of her current meds, the list they'd made sure to remind us to bring. (I gave it to the nurse AFTER the procedure).
The upper GI went pretty well. Some redness in the stomach, and some other places, consistent with autoimmune-induced gastritis and damage to the esophagus as well. They do these things under a General Anesthetic, so there was a breathing tube down the throat, and electrodes stuck on the body here and there, using an adhesive she's allergic to.
But it went pretty well, and we were out of there by noon. Came home and ate something (ground rules called for NO food after last evening around 6 p.m., so she was famished. And then we lay down and died for a few hours, just got up and microwaved some leftovers. They made a big point of ordering that she be sure to use the CPAP in this nap, the stuff she'd been through has a potential to have her stop breathing. Scary! So we crashed for about 3 hours or so. Needed it, BAD!
And yet ....
When you go into these offices and such, you encounter some people and situations, and you get the idea that perhaps you're there for them as well. Anyone believe in coincidences? Not me.
For example, they stuck me in a separate waiting area while the procedure was under way. A lady sitting there reading something, both of us ignoring the dreadful crap on the TV. And we talked a bit, spurred by a news account of yet another case of a multiple offender drunk/impaired driver killing someone and injuring several more. Got into some things. Turns out she's just in despair. She has a daughter, an only child, who just had a heroin-induced overdose. The first responders saved her life. Her sister has several kids, and one of them just had another heroin-induced overdose, again, fortunately her life was saved. This time. I was able to speak some words of encouragement and try to point her in the right direction, but of course the problem -- now at least -- is not hers, it's her daughter's problem. And, yes, there's lots of what I call "splash". The OD affects a whole lot of people besides the patient. Many, How to deal with the potential death of her only child? Not easy, and should not be.
Before that, in the "main" waiting area, Wife and I spoke with several other patients. Two had just been diagnosed with advanced forms of cancer. Again, we were able to speak some things, but I don't know how fertile the ground. The one said, "I just wish God would tell me that I'm dead, so that I don't have to get up". Her words. I don't think she's seeing the matter quite rightly.
Lot of this stuff going on. Lots of people around here just giving up and drinking or drugging themselves to death, seeing no hope. Despair is as bad a killer as cancer or heart disease.
I'll try to get things back on track as much as possible. A week from now, we go back to the same office for a more involved procedure. Not going to be fun, not at all.
The Old Testament reading today is chapters 4 and 5 of 2nd Kings. Things are getting worse, fast. And will get even more so.
II Kings 5
The New Testament passage is verses 1-30 of chapter 4 in the Gospel of John.