It’s been a long week … and a half

I will try to hit the highlights that have happened since the crash:

  • On Wednesday I got to tow the van to a neighborhood body shop.  Driving lead car to a place I’d never been and whose address my husband did not remember (and which of course does not have a website one can simply google) would have been more of a challenge, had it not been for his accurate memory of the street, the shop’s location on the southwest corner of the intersection, and the very particular color scheme, which included a “dark sage green.”  I knew we’d arrived when I saw that exact color, and frankly was impressed with his attention to the sort of detail that makes a difference to ME, since precise color variations are not usually on his radar.
  • Most of the rest of the week was uneventful, since I was feeling an increasing discomfort in my left ankle and needed to keep off it as much as possible. I managed to get to choir on Wednesday night, which was a wonderful treat since I’d missed recently, and we are preparing to sing for an ordination mass this weekend.
  • By Friday I was really laid up with the pain in my ankle, and hoping I could reverse the trend by staying off it completely and keeping it up in a recliner chair.  It was a little frustrating, but my family is helpful and took good care of me.
  • Saturday morning we were hit with another blow to our family mobility when our second mini-van had to be left at the shop.  It failed emissions, and that meant taking it to our fix-it guy – the guy who does good work cheap (but not fast).  This left us with only our Oldsmobile sedan for transportation for the foreseeable future, and made getting our family of eight plus six or more Gonzales kids to church pretty much impossible.  I figured out a way that at least some of us could make it, with choir people going at 9am, and the rest to the 5pm.
  • Unfortunately the pain only got worse and worse over the weekend. There was no way I could make it to church, so I stayed home, on Corpus Christi Sunday, and felt sorry for myself. I tried to watch the mass online, and the streaming was funky and wouldn’t work after 7 minutes.  I felt even sorrier.  At least my being out of the picture made for a slightly less complicated travel plan, and, what with mom going with Jeff to Mater Misericordiae (he’s got air conditioning), everyone else made it to mass.
  • Fast forward to Tuesday – still sitting in the recliner most of the time, by now completely depressed by the pain and confinement, and sure I would have to somehow get to a doctor, yet unable to get myself there because – no car, and feeling like a bum because as the day progressed, the pain in both my foot and leg got exponentially worse, and I knew I would need Paul to drive me, possibly to the ER because I was becoming increasingly sure that not only was my foot broken, I might have something seriously wrong in my calf as well, and just knowing he would have to miss his weekly Tuesday volunteering at St. Vincent de Paul sent me into a complete sobbing melt-down.  It was not a good day.
  • But then he did come home. And he found a replacement for himself. And he drove me to Urgent Care, where we were seen almost immediately. But when the PA came in to examine the situation, his concern shifted from the ankle to the leg.  My legs have long been extremely tender below the knee – both legs, and I didn’t know why; but his assessment was that I was exhibiting classic symptoms of blood clots, and needed to get to the closest ER stat for an ultrasound.
  • Instead of the closest ER, we headed over to the hospital associated with Paul’s doctor (since I don’t currently have a doctor, and he figured I would need follow up care, whatever they found out).
  • We arrived and found the waiting room almost empty – another blessing of the day.  We were seen relatively quickly again, and before I knew it I was in an exam room in a gown awaiting a doctor.  His swift appraisal was the same as the PA, and he asked if I wanted any pain medication. At first I thought he meant for my current level of pain, and was inclined to say no, until he explained that the diagnostic ultrasound is a fairly intense procedure, involving strong pressure. Well, since any mere touch was like a knife, I said Yes Please, give me the morphine.
  • Then came the worst part of the evening.  I would have predicted the needle stick would be the worst part of the evening in any case, but it was adding injury to injury when the ultrasound technician came in right before the IV nurse, and I ended up experiencing both the agony of the ultrasound on one side, and the agony of failed IV sticks on the other, simultaneously.  The best thing I can say about all that pain is that I made good and sure I was offering it up.  And you know what? It helped. It really did because it made it worthwhile.
  • While we waited after the ultrasound was finished and I was enjoying the odd effects of morphine for the first time, Paul managed to contact Laurent, who has been on a VBS “retreat” at church this week.  The youth director let her come straight to the hospital to see  me, which was very nice of her.
  • Right after she arrived, the doc came in with the ultrasound results. Praise be to God, they found no clots in either leg.  He explained the tenderness as being due to fluid build up in and around the muscles, and prescribed a famous painkiller as well as a muscle relaxant. We were out of the hospital before 10:30, which was utterly amazing and beyond expectation.
  • I’m thankful to the pharmacist for explaining to Paul that the muscle relaxant should not be prescribed with that particular pain killer.  Considering how absolutely horrible I felt all night long after taking the narcotics, both together would have been disastrous.  Needless to say, there is absolutely NO DANGER  I will EVER be addicted to this stuff!!  Despite the fact that it truly did block all pain for the rest of the night, the feeling of paralysis left me in a panic, and I could not sleep at all.  I spent the night praying many prayers for others in need, and again, was thankful my discomfort was not for nothing. I’m sticking with Tylenol from here on out.
  • My last two pieces of news are happy ones: today we received our first ever delivery of groceries from the local Safeway.  What a cool wait to shop, (literally) at home from my computer!  Having no car drove me to it (har-har), but I may find myself doing it again just for the sheer convenience and time savings.
  • And finally, we found out yesterday that the Toyota is finished, and they were just waiting for the paint to cure.  We might get it back today, which would be marvelous, marvelous, marvelous.  I’ve gotten too old for driving in this Arizona heat without A/C. Old or just wimpy, take your pick.  Either way, I’m thrilled to be getting my A/C back!

Now that I’ve finally caught up, I will go put my feet back up and drink some ice tea.  And here’s the view from my chair, after being blessed by Junior with two friends to snuggle:

Panda Polar

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