A Difficult Decision

I apologize for not publishing last week, I certainly had enough to write about I simply just didn’t have the time.  When I missed my Saturday deadline I had even planned on getting it out on Monday, then life happened, a particularly eventful one this week.  Last week I was travelling from Tuesday evening until Friday evening and originally I had the same schedule planned out for this week.  I had drafted a lengthy and amusing anecdote about how at nearly midnight I wound up at the front of a long line at Hertz where I was issued the last remaining rental car on the lot, after this week including it no longer seemed appropriate or all that funny.  You see, this week I had to make one of the most difficult decisions I have made in my entire life, I had to choose between supporting the woman I love and caring for a son who needed me.

Tuesday was Veteran’s Day and fortunately it was also a holiday that I had off.  My plan was to spend the day doing some work around the house before I had to meet up with the guy who I was buying a truck from to process the paperwork around 1400.  Leslie woke up that morning feeling nauseous and in quite a bit of pain.  By 0930 the pain was enough that she called the doctor’s office and they told us to come in.  We loaded up the car and made the trip over to the doctor’s office.  When we got there they ran Leslie through a battery of tests including an ultrasound.  Ultimately they determined that both she and the baby were ok so they sent us home despite the fact that she was still in quite a bit of pain and had begun vomiting.

We finally got back to the house (where I had to break in because I had managed to lock myself out) and I told Leslie to go try and get some sleep, I would take care of Jack and do my own laundry in preparation for my trip that evening.  At 1400 I took Jack out with me and we went and completed the process of buying the truck and got everything transported back to the house.  At this point Leslie was feeling even worse than before and I made the unilateral decision to cancel my trip.

By 1700 Leslie called the doctor’s office again to report her increased pain and continued vomiting, they told her to go to the hospital and report to the ER.  Once again we loaded up the car and made the trip across town where she, this time, checked into the emergency room.  I dropped Leslie off at the entrance to the ER and by the time I had found a parking space and gotten Jack out of the car she had already checked in and been escorted to a room.  We waited around for about four hours while they performed a series of tests that ultimately told us nothing.  By 2100 Jack was starting to show signs of exhaustion and the doctor had just made the determination to keep her overnight for observation.  At this point I was forced to choose between being a husband and being a parent.  Jack need to sleep and wasn’t going to do so in my arms and his constant fidgeting and crying was proving enough of a distraction to keep Leslie from sleeping.  At the same time I could see the fear and uncertainty in my wife’s eyes, she didn’t want to be left alone.  In just about any other place this would be a no-brainer, I’d call someone from our church family and ask them to look after Jack for the night while I stayed at the hospital, but we’ve only been here for two weeks, we’re not even close to finding a home church, much less someone I would trust my child with.

As I drove home I kept praying that God would give me insight, that he would provide a way out of this issue.  When I got back to the house I put Jack to bed and I packed up the car with everything we would need if we were going to stay the night at the hospital, then I called Les.  I asked her how she was doing and if she wanted us to come back to the hospital since I now had everything we would need for Jack to sleep packed up in the van.  By this point she had calmed down and realized that she would sleep better if Jack wasn’t there in the room with her (awake or otherwise) and she told me that she was ok with us staying home for the evening.

Wednesday morning came around and I gathered Jack up and headed back to the hospital.  Sometime after Jack and I had left the evening before they had transferred Leslie from the ER to the Women and Children’s section of the hospital so she had a much nicer room that had a lot more space for Jack to play around in.  Leslie was still in quite a bit of pain and still very nauseous but she was feeling mildly better since she had gotten a few hours of sleep.  Leslie spent the rest of the day being run through a battery of tests while I spent my time watching Jack wander around the floor flirting with all the nurses.  I had to keep a pretty sharp eye on the kid because I’m certain one of the nurses would have ended up trying to take him home otherwise.

photo 2

Thursday rolled around and we were essentially in the same spot we were in when she first checked in to the ER.  The doctors had not definitively ruled out anything and while they were pretty sure they had a good idea of what was causing the problem they couldn’t be sure.  They didn’t think it was appendicitis which was good because that would have had pretty big implications for both Leslie and the baby.  They did think it could be kidney stones but they weren’t sure because, as it turns out, many of the symptoms that are common with kidney stones are also the same symptoms of being pregnant and the normal procedure of determining if someone has a kidney stone or not is to perform a CT scan which wasn’t an option since she is pregnant.  They wound up taking a single x-ray that didn’t show anything in the kidneys which didn’t really mean anything since the stones could have been small enough they wouldn’t have shown up on an x-ray.  Long story short, they discharged her Thursday afternoon with a prescription for pain pills and anti-nausea medicine.

As of this morning Leslie is doing better, not anywhere near 100%, but definitely better than when she checked into the hospital.  To be honest, I’m still processing everything that happened this week, I’m not certain if there is something I learned (or should have learned) through all this.  All I know is that I was forced to make a difficult decision and while it ultimately ended up being the right one it still isn’t easy to look back on it.  Maybe next week I’ll have more on this, or perhaps I’ll just write about the New York DMV or how I’m ready to cut down all the trees in my yard (and my neighbor’s yard) after only having to have raked once.


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