Monday, January 29, 2007

Day 14- the trades

So while my headache is going away and my fever is going down, I've traded those in for some new ones. Namely, I have a sharp shoulder pain when I breathe, cough, or try to get out of bed. Nothing like getting your almost-retirement age hospital staffer to help you get out of bed.

Ok, literally after I finished writing the last sentence, I must have closed my eyes because I was back in my old room watching A Scanner Darkly. When I opened my eyes again it was really disconcerting.

Oh, and I'm not allowed to leave my room anymore so I've got swelling in my legs and feet. The only remedy for this the hospital seems aware of is to make me pee more. I'm really not a fan of that. How about they stick me in a bubble? That way I couldn't hurt anyone, and no one could hurt me. I'd be rolling around this floor like crazy.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Day 13- more hallucinations

In case there is any doubt about these hallucinations, I often find myself lying in bed watching something on my computer, only to later realize that my computer isn't on, isn't even in front of me, and it's all in my head. Sometimes I only realize this after the picture freezes and I try to open my eyes. Several times every hour I find myself somewhere else and get startled when I open my eyes and I'm back in the hospital.

Day 13- hallucination infatutation

This medicine's side effects are bizarre. The dark spot in my vision becomes a bright, neon green/blue/yellow spot when I close my eyes (like if you have a camera flashbulb go off in your face). When I close my eyes, the spot turns into things. I can even think of something and the spot turns into that, but then it turns into a creepy version. Wow, that sounds a lot more messed up when I write it out. I don't really get anything other than blurred vision and the dark spot when my eyes are open. The weird stuff happens when I close my eyes or go to bed. Well no worries, they unplugged me from that stuff this morning so hopefully this will all go away. In the meantime, if any of you would like to know your future, we could see how useful these hallucinations are.

Day 13- The more you are...

They've been weighing me every day and apparently I gained 10lbs between yesterday and today. More of me to love I guess.

Oh, and this is a day after my doctor came in and told me to stop eating. I imagine that speech should go something like the following: "We've found an infection and one of the best ways to fight it off is to stop eating solid foods for a few days. In the meantime we've got some liquid nutrition options." Instead, it went like this "Ok, you need to stop eating."

I haven't eaten in 5 days.

Day 13- the drugs

So I mentioned before that one of the new drugs they have me on can cause visual hallucinations. I'm definitely not getting anything serious, but I've got a dark spot in the center of my right eye's field of vision that won't go away. Hence I can barely read what I'm writing.

This past night of sleep was particularly interesting because apparently that stuff also effects what you see in your head. In my case, whenever I'd get woken up during the night and drift back off, I'd have some bizarre dream and then would be really confused when I was woken up next.

Odd things I've dreamed about so far (keep in mind that there was no context to any of these, I would literally just get a few seconds and then I'd get woken up again):

I was in a room with a bunch of mountain men who were filling out forms.
I just looked down and saw my hand completely covered in blood.
My cat.

I guess they can't all be bad.

Day 13- the tv preacher man

I was flipping through channels at about 8 this morning hoping to find something worth watching. Natrually, it being sunday at 8am and all, there's nothing but sports and preachers. I ended up stopping on one of the preacher channels while I was doing something else, and I heard a little of what the man had to say. First, he seemed to be unhappy with organized religion, he also seemed unhappy with people who obsessively study the bible. I'm not exactly sure who he does like, but given that he's a tv preacher, probably just himself.

Another thing I enjoyed from tv preacher man was him explaining to everyone in the audience (I'm guessing they were drugged and kidnapped, otherwise this country has no future) that "jesus wasn't thinking about comfort." He said this while in a cushy recliner chair, I guess to emphasize the part about comfort. He didn't really go anywhere with it other than to say "god and Jesus made themselves uncomfortable." At that point I changed the channel.

Oh, another religious weirdness request, this time for the Christians:

What is a high risk prayer and why did this guy keep patting himself on the back for not doing them?

Day 13- I'm officially an angsty teen all over again

I saw something on the tv this morning that disturbed me. I believe it's one of the signs of impending apocalypse. It is called the "rocket fishing rod." The commercial begins by showing a bunch of kids at the edge of a lake with plastic gun things. They shoot those, and then it cuts to footage of the fish they catch. I assumed this was a joke commercial because it looked way too ridiculous. Yeah, it wasn't. It is literally a plastic toy gun that shoots a capsule with a hook inside it into the water.

Thoughts on this:

Are we trying to get children into the whole fishing thing?

if so, why?

Even if you use the gun to shoot the hook into the lake, there's no reason to think you'll catch anything quickly. I have to imagine that once those excited little children on the commercial have gotten over the novelty of shooting at things, they'll just end up shooting each other.

see for yourself

Favorite phrase so far today: Tackle pack. It comes free with the rocket thing and just sounds dirty.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Day 12- the answer to the great Jew question

So my aunt has informed me that the rabbi wanted the door closed to prevent the angel of death from finding him. This angel of death can find him amongst the 6 billion people on the planet, but a door baffles him? I'm not impressed.

Day 12- for real this time

So it's day 12. Yesterday I didn't get out of bed once and I've had a consisted fever of 103 for a few days now. This is starting to not be so fun anymore.

Oh, thanks to my epic fever (and the attendant alternating freezing and boiling feelings) they've moved me into my own room. While technically it's an "isolation room" (Miranda, I think I've found your next apartment) that I'll only be in for a week or so to let this infection/fever stuff blow over, I don't care. It's my own room with my own shower and nobody snoring. I plan to mount a defense when they try to get me out of here. My IV tree could be a very effective javelin... assuming I can get someone to unplug me from it,.

With that mental imagery, it's time for sleep.

Day 12- still catching up

So the rabbi left at like 9 at night, I figured I'd have the room to myself. No, at 11 or so they brought in Bob. At first, I thought Bob was a mid-westerner. He kinda had the look and he actually said hi to me and introduced himself. It wasn't until about 4 that morning that Bob's yelling "FUCKING IV BEEPING" clued me in to his New Yorker status.

Bob seemed nice enough, but he snored. And not in the normal human way. Imagine, if you will, a gas powered lawn mower. Now imagine the sound of someone pulling the starter on the lawn mower, the mower starting for a second, then turning off. That is what Bob's snores were like. (oh, and keep in mind that I've probably never experienced that sound in my life, so I'm going on what it sounded like in "honey I shrunk the kids")

Day 12- pain and the beast

NOTE: from this point on I'm on an antibiotic that really screws up my vision. I can just barely read what I'm writing so I apologize if this sounds like it was written by a retarded 7 year old.

I was so sick the last few days I couldn't write. I literally didn't get out of bed once yesterday. I have a fever of 103. You'll forgive me if I'm not so entertaining.

I had meant to write something about the rabbi, so here it is even though he left a few days ago.

The rabbi is a beast. He is 100% strong-like-bull man. Let me put this in context.

A minor surgical procedure is defined as anything a doctor can justify not hitting you over the head with a stick until you're unconscious before he's comfortable doing it. Things like bone marrow biopsies are considered "minor surgical procedures" even though it was the most painful traumatizing thing I've ever experienced. The rabbi had a bone marrow biopsy in our room. I ran. I got out into the hall and just started marching in circles. My nurse saw me and I explained the situation and he was willing to do recon for me. I walked in circles for like 40 minutes. Around here that's a lot. Before I left the room I heard the rabbi double checking with the doctor that they wouldn't be using anything other than a local anesthetic. I, on the other hand, beg and plead and publicly humiliate myself to try and get them to give me something.

More evidence of the rabbi's beasthood and my little girlishness: He and I underwent the same procedure to have a central line placed in our chests. As the little girl that I am, I had anxiety and fear of this procedure for days. Turns out they knock you out for it, which I am a huge fan of. The beast/rabbi turned down the anesthetic. Yeah, he wanted to be awake during someone going into his chest with a needle. Probably several needles. The rabbi is a beast.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Day 10- that's right, double digits!

Odd things for today:

Turns out my roommate is a rabbi.

He also wakes up before dawn and prays for like 2 hours.

With the lights on.

Do you go to hell for hoping a rabbi passes out before he can go back to praying?

Oh, and the lady who came in to check my vital signs had a bite mark on her arm. I'm no expert, but it looked human. If I'm stuck here for 30 days I think it's about time I start coming up with interesting back stories for all the people around here.

Rabbi's morning consisted of the following (which I was privy to because his light went on before dawn and he started talking loudly):
He prayed.
He called someone and prayed on the phone
He mumbled
He prayed some more
He made another phone call and prayed on the phone again
This continued for about 2 hours.

This is a conversation that just happened between hospital staff and the rabbi (I'm actually not sure who the middle quote is...)
"I'm here for the urine."
"Urine, what urine? Did you take urine?
"no, nobody asked me to"

(keep in mind that the first quote has a thick hispanic accent and the next two are thick Israeli accents)

Just in case anyone doubts the complete loss of human dignity in modern hospitals...

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Day 9- roommate

I get the feeling that while I'm talking to friends who come visit, my roommate and his family are whispering on the other side of the curtain. Clearly they could be spies sent here to get my very important knowledge... or perhaps my bone marrow. Everyone seems to want that stuff.

Day 9- explosion

The nurse was across the curtain talking to my roommate. Mid-sentence she ripped off a very respectable fart. I never would have imagined she had it in her.

Now the roommate is praying. Good for him.

Day 9- new roommate

OH, I almost forgot. I have a request from anyone particularly Jewish. My new roommate is kosher, prays twice a day, is currently ordering gefilte fish and wears the whole getup. My question is this: Is there something in the land of Jew that would explain his request that, based on his religion, he needs people to remember to shut the door to the room when they leave? It's not that I disapprove of the idea (doctors and nurses come in at all hours of the night and forget to turn out the lights and close the door when they leave. By all hours I mean 11:30, 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9 at night/in the morning). I'm just kinda curious as to what pillar of judaism has to do with closing the door. So yeah, if you know, do tell.

NOTE: I'm half jewish. Kiss my ass.

Day 9

brain broken. Luckily the new answer to all that ails me is painkillers. They gave me one earlier and it didn't quite get me that far, so they went for a second one. Sometime in the next 20 minutes I imagine I'll be entering the "weeeeeeee" phase. In the meantime my head hurts.

Oh, the new roommate is only here for a few days. This is good because he's got hearing problems so everyone has to scream at him. Still working on a nickname, the following adjectives apply: old, jewish, pissy, loud, cranky, very very jewish. Like I said, still working on it.

I woke up this morning and my IV was leaking. I stepped in a puddle of god knows what. Tastes like burning. Ok, I probably didn't taste it.

Day 8- food lady

I called to get some food from the cafeteria last night and the lady on the phone had me convinced I'd called the wrong number. Imagine the following dialogue but when she speaks, the voice you hear is a 900 number operator kinda whispering seductively. (this is probably funnier if you read it out loud)

Me: I'd like to order some food.
Her: ok, what can I get for you.
Me: I'd like a sandwhich
Her: oooh yeah.
Me: Uh, with whole wheat bread...
Her: mmm yeah
Me: And muenster cheese
Her: yeah
Me: and mustard
Her: mmmhmmm

I also asked for a ginger ale.

I don't even have something amusing to say here, I'm still kinda confused from the whole experience.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Day 8- new roommate

LEM has left me a present. Once he left, I got switched into his side of the room because it's more spacious and just generally better. But the secret I forgot was that LEM had used his cologne hose on the whole area. Smells yummy.

My new neighbor sounds kinda pissy. He's been here 5 minutes and he's already bitching out the poor food lady. He wants his sprite "cold, frozen. It should not be warm." I guarantee you she didn't ask. Oh, and he wants everything kosher.

Day 8 part 3

For the record: Total props to Gina for the LEM nickname. Maybe I'll come up with a "Jesse's blog assistance award."

More about little european man:

He has now officially left. As he was leaving he made a valiant effort to say something to me (I'm not sure what language he was aiming for) and eventually managed "you home soon." Sweet of him. He may have meant that, since he knows I'm going to be here throughout all eternity, he's going to have his eastern european mafia friends raid my home soon. He may have meant that he's going to burn down this damn hospital so I'll be going home before I expect. There are many things he may have meant, but I choose to think he meant that he's going to move in with me after I get out of here. The reason I'm hoping for this is as follows:

Little European man (LEM) timeline:
day 1: LEM arrives and settles in. His wife stays over with him that night which is sweet, but between the two of them the snoring probably could have brought the building down.
Also, I'm informed that LEM has pneumonia. This is super fun in and of itself, but it's also the case that my immune system ain't workin too good, I can't even leave my room without a mask on and no one is allowed to visit me without wearing one. But the guy next to me has pneumonia. What might a doctor say about this? Well she said that pneumonia won't cross the curtain (presumably she means the one between me and LEM's beds). I find that odd. Does she really mean that pneumonia as a disease was conquered by the advent of the curtain? Additionally, this worries me because the bathroom is on my side of the room, as is the exit, so he has to walk past me all the time. Not even a really really impressive curtain could protect me from that.

I can't remember any more specific days, but these are other things that happened:
LEM's wife doesn't stay over one night, and I realize that 90% of the olympic, epic, beyond thunderdome snoring that is being done is by LEM's wife (who is easily 3 times LEM's mass, speaks his mystery language, and is apparently quite dedicated to the little man).
LEM doesn't bother walking to the bathroom. He prefers the little bedpans. That's fun to listen to.
Other things LEM does that are fun to listen to: This 5 foot tall man coughs. I don't mean coughs the way that your average human being coughs. I mean LEM coughs like satan himself (or a really up-there lesser demon) has not only become lodged in LEM's throat, but is currently holding on for dear life to stay in there and has summoned his demon armies to assist him. Apparently LEM also has a spitoon for whatever lesser demons he manages to shake loose. We're in a hospital and the man has a spitoon.
LEM also mumbles in his sleep. It's kinda cute cause he's tiny and weird, but I can't even come close to understanding what he's saying when he's conscious. And I don't think he'd appreciate it if I walked over there and started petting him. Then again....

Day 8 part 2

Weeeeeeeeeeeeee. That means my painkillers just kicked in. If you've never been on narcotic painkillers, I'm not sure how to describe them. Remember Tinker Bell, fairy dust, that whole deal? Now imagine taking Tinker Bell, shaking her really hard and sticking her in your ear. I can't fly but this is probably the next best thing.

Downside: I lived on painkillers for 2 years straight so I actually hate them. But that doesn't mean I'm not going to enjoy the 2 hours of peace they give me.

Weee indeed.

Day 8

I room with a crazy little eastern european man. He won't tell anyone what country he's from and no one can figure out what language he's speaking. He definitely busted out some Italian a few days ago, but only a sentence or two. I'm only guessing that he's eastern european. He's about 5 feet tall but has a gigantic head.

What I do know is that he's probably going home today and, given the amount of cologne he has (I'm only guessing) sprayed around the room with a firehose just for the occassion, I think that's a really good thing. Then again, who knows what I'll get for a replacement.

Side effects of little european man's cologne:
Headache, nausea, general discomfort.
Side effects of arsenic treatment:
Headache, nausea, having to room with little european man.

Has anyone ever told you "I'm getting your arsenic?" If so, I hope you ran away. I'm plugged into the wall. Plus I probably couldn't run that fast. Instead I demanded drugs.

Today's exciting news:

- I apparently have too much phospherous in my blood. Do you think that means I glow in the dark? Cause I think it does. I'm gonna go test that theory.

- I need an MRI. But I hear you ask why. I did too. Well the answer is that I have a headache. Here in the land of modern medicine, that means something has gone horribly wrong. Nothing has actually gone horribly wrong, but they need to test for the horribly wrong thing that hasn't, in fact, gone. Confused? Don't tell anyone in a hospital because they'll sign you up for an MRI.

Favorite quote of the day: "Blame the catholic church for not letting me wear one of those little rubber things."