Monday, April 26, 2010


posted by Mary Lello, Monday, April 26, 2010, 3:45 PM

Now that George Clooney made ER famous I'm assuming you all know what it means. We spent the entire day in the Emergency Room today. At 7:15 this morning while Jim was in the shower I noticed he was standing there under the stream but something was wrong. Call it Lioness intuition but I poked my head into the shower and realized Jim's head was doing an odd bobbing motion, he couldn't turn it to look at me and was frozen in the spot standing there and hanging onto the shower rail. I turned the water off and got him to sit down on his shower chair. His eyes were vacant, he couldn't say one word and it seemed like he couldn't even see me. Seizure. Shit, shit, shit!!

I grabbed the phone and called the Puelle's. Betsy was amazing, she was so calm and said David had just left to take Eli to school but she would call him. I learn later that David had not taken his cell phone with him as he was just dropping their kid two minutes away so Betsy jumped into her car and tracked him down. David was at the house within 15 minutes. Pretty good team work by the Puelle's!

During that time I was able to get Jim out of the shower as he recovered a bit from the seizure, got him to the bedroom and onto the bed. As I was helping him dress he had another seizure. David showed up just as that one was slowly subsiding. Together we got Jim dressed and decided we would get the wheel chair and take Jim to the ER. While I had run downstairs to collect all needed things for going to the hospital David had stepped out of the room briefly and Jim, being the determined, stubborn boy that he is, stood up to try and walk BY HIMSELF, fell and gashed his head open on a small, wooden chair. He's on blood thinner, there was a lot of blood.

OK, now we call the ambulance. The Falmouth Fire and Rescue is amazing and most of it is volunteer. My neighbor, Barney Schneider is one of the volunteers and another man who "lives just around the corner" got the call so these two drop everything and run over getting here before the ambulance arrives to assist however they can. We were at the ER by 8:00 a.m. and, of course, spent the next six hours there in 'hospital time warp-zone'. David called and cleared his day so he could stay with Jim and I for the entire time. Even though there is nothing really going on at this point and Jim is being CAT scanned, medicated and stapled (6, in that skull gash) it still feels really good to have someone else just stay there with me, to help me make the next decision, to ask additional questions, to smile over at me or shed a tear or two with me while sitting there and ... waiting, and .... waiting, and .... finally getting some information.

The CAT scan showed no bleeding in the brain and, although an inferior image to the MRI, the radiologist said the tumor does not appear larger. This is a really good thing. So they want to check electrolytes to try and discover what might have caused the seizures. Those show to be perfect too. Bottom line is, it's fairly common a year or two after the original seizure to have the medication not work quite as well and therefore have a seizure again. We will probably need to add a neurologist onto our medical team now but until we see him/her we have increased his anti-siezure meds an additional 500mgs.

Life in the fast lane, the big C-lane, the never-a-dull-moment lane, the how-much-more-can-we-take lane. But we're home. Jim is wiped out and on the couch but every time he wakes he looks a little brighter eyed and more himself. We were told he should feel much better tomorrow and continue to recover .... and I pray that we get back to the baseline he was at before today.

One more thing - there was a beautiful framed photograph in our ER room today of a huge tree with ground fog hovering over a field in the background. I was captivated by this photograph .... I read the information ... Nance Trueworthy! That brought a smile to my face for a moment.

Loving you all back,


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