Fricking Mondays

We don't like mondays in this house. Bad stuff always happened on a Monday with Bethy, and we've come to associate these days with shite.

So same story, two versions, long and short.

The Short Version
Thought Jo was having a heart attack. She wasn't. Spent all day in Casualty. Came Home.

The Long Version
So I get a call from Jo this morning, literally two minutes after I published the previous post about her shopping. The signal was rubbish and she was stressed out. Credit Card not working, and she's having some nasty chest pains.

Chest pains.

Somehow I got from home to town in about 10 minutes, and met up with an upset and hurting Jo. Card wouldn't scan so we used mine, and set out for home. As we're talking I'm looking over her, checking her colour (which was fine), working out if she's struggling to breathe (which she wasn't) but still wasn't happy. Chest pains, coupled with shooting pains down the left arm = Dan in worry mode.

So we get home, and I give her the choice - Call your Mum for a ride to the hospital, or I call an Ambulance.

Her mum was here very fast and took us to Casualty.

Of course, the first thing you should know about Basildon hospital is that it is hugely understaffed and always mega-busy. Today was no different, and Triage alone was standing room only. Marvellous. 11.33am we sign in and there are BIG RED SIGNS up everywhere - If you are suffering from chest pain, please alert a member of staff immediately. I figured that as she was, I'd alert them. A nurse looked at her, asked if she had any previous heart condition, and said "take a seat". At 1.07pm - One Hour, 34 Minutes after arrival, the triage nurse called us over.

Blood Pressure, ECG, Blood Sugar, and bloods taken. Go take a seat. I checked the admin form - she was marked as "Medium Priority" and reason for visit was "Shoulder Injury". Ooookay. So I check us in and tell the receptionist it's "Chest Pains" and not Shoulder Injury, and we sit. Jo is given some pain killers and we sit some more. And wait another 40 minutes until she's called and lead into the Major Unit. This is where all the hearts, serious asthma, car accidents and Nan-Down! calls end up, so we weren't in with the sprained ankle/cut finger riff-raff.

Doc checks her over, umm'ing and arr'ing, checking her nervous system, blood flow and suchlike - he's checking for signs of stroke or blood clot. I'm sweating, but keeping it together. Jo is tired and has a nap, while I sit on the bed reading and trying to ignore the sounds of a busy hospital.

Another hour passes us by and a porter arrives to take us for a surprise X-Ray. A nice jaunt through the hospital, why not. So we bumble and crash through the corridors - Jo, who walked in and walked into the ward is on a bed being driven by a crash test dummy. While waiting for the Xray she has to take her bra off, much to the embarrassment of the Porter. She then realises she has metal in her nipple and pops that out too - poor porter didn't know where to look.

Xray done, we head back to the bay, and we sit and wait. And wait. Doctor wants to do an Arterial blood sample from the wrist which I know hurts so she didn't enjoy that too much. And we sit and wait some more.

Sense a theme here?

He comes back and tells us he thinks it's a muscular-skeletal pain, and not anything nasty, but he wanted to wait on the bloods to come back to be certain. Fair enough, he was a nice chap and we were in the department with all the other cattle patients. Aaaaand we waiting and we wait- you get the idea. Doc comes back with a worried look.

"Uhoh" thinks I.

He's not happy with the bloods, the trace from the ECG "has changed" which is interesting as it doesn't do anything - it's a bit of paper - but he wants to do one more blood test to rule "something else out". So Jo gets another prick. Yes, I had to make that joke. He toddles off with his seven pints of blood and we... Yeah.

While we sit and wait, a male nurse comes over with a bed pan and some tissue. "You want a wee?" he says, directly to me. Bear in mind, I am fully clothed, in a coat, sitting on the edge of a bed. Jo, on the other hand, is IN the bed, IN a hospital gown. "Er, no thanks" is all I can answer, and he huffs and walks away. That made my trip really.

Doctor comes back (after an unmentioned wait) and explains that the things he was testing for were negative (I wondered if he did Jo's IQ test - that'd be negative too), and that "something we saw on a lung is nothing". Riiight. "You can go home."

And that was exactly what we did.

So, turns out Jo has a pulled muscle or caught a nerve or something in her back. The pain from that is arching around, under and down her left arm, making me fill my pants with worry. I'm fine now, but was mega stressed. Jo is just hurting and popping paracetamol and codiene.

Of course, it wouldn't be a hospital trip without a Bethy moment. While Jo was being wired up to the ECG and Sat Monitor, the sounds and sights was the sort of thing Bethy endured on a regular basis. The sounds in the ward weren't nice, and the smell of dressing and antisceptic and alcohol gel didn't help either.

And, of course, we had a visit from the "Pastoral Care Department" which is fancy P.C speak for "A Priest". He was nice enough and we chatted to him, he offered to say a prayer that all went well - we didn't stop him as we're happy for people to prayer for us - and the subject came around to Bethy, who he will also say a prayer for.

Which means... I've not eaten today. Luckily, Jo's mum made us some soup, otherwise Jo would be in the kitchen cooking. Lazy wench.

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2 Responses to “Fricking Mondays”

Gretchen said...

Yikes! I'm glad everthing is ok...

Around here, we have the "Emergency Room" and we have "Urgent Care" - urgent care being if you don't have a regular doc and want to be checked. They can take you to the ER if it's bad enough, but UC tends to keep things a little less clogged up.

Nancy said...

Oh wow, I sure am glad that Jo wasn't having a heart attack! How scary! Your "Casualty" sounds about as organized as our "Emergency Rooms". I was thinking about Bethy as I read your ordeal and figured you must have been thinking of her.