Monday, December 06, 2010

The Weekend That Wasn't

We had a number of plans for the weekend. Nothing earth shattering or mind blowing: a little winter cleaning, a little life laundry, etc. Mainly we just wanted to get the Christmas decorations and tree up and to make an occasion of it for the kids.

Instead the weekend ended up with my youngest boy, Tom, wearing a cardboard bedpan on his head at the local hospital because to him it was not a bedpan but a cowboy hat.

How did we get there...?

Well, my wife, Karen, had been feeling rotten all last week and towards the end was too ill and too uncomfortable with stomach pain to go into work. Unfortunately there is a hell of a lot of stomach bugs going round at the moment so our local GP was not unduly concerned. By Friday, however, she'd taken a turn for the worse and the GP requested she attend the surgery before it closed for the weekend.

The last thing Karen wanted to do was get out of bed and go into the snow to be poked about by the doctor but, thank God, that is what we eventually did.

The doc wasn't happy and diagnosed, "hospital".

Now given that Karen was unable to drive because of her condition and I am unable to drive because I have never taken my test we would have been stuck indeed but instead are indebted to our neighbour and to a work friend who between them both have ferried us all around since this whole thing kicked off.

So Friday night we all - me, Karen and the boys - found ourselves stuck in A&E for 5 hours while they prodded, probed, removed blood and X-rayed Karen in their attempts to form a proper diagnosis.

None of these tests went to waste. The final diagnosis was Colitis - inflammation of the colon. And severe dehydration. Severe enough that she has still been on a drip today. Thank God we went to the doctors - I think the outcome could have been far worse if we'd delayed any longer.

So that rather changed the structure of the weekend. I've been a single parent for about 3 days (and counting) and though I am coping (i.e. the boys are wearing clean clothes, eating proper meals and going to school / nursery as usual) I am frazzled to say the least. It hasn't left much room for writing or "me time" and I deeply admire those genuine single parents who manage to balance family responsibilities with responsibilities towards the self.

Karen is recovering well. I have been to see her again today and the doctors are talking of allowing her home either tomorrow or Wednesday but she is officially signed off work until next Monday. I'm off work until Wednesday - my boss has been very understanding.

The boys are fine - the oldest, Ben, has taken refuge in his DS (a coping strategy I am sure) and the youngest, Tom, has occasional sulky moments when he grabs my face, fixes me with a hard Paddington Bear stare and demands, "where's my mummy; not fair, want mummy". I think I have impressed on him that mummy will be home soon. He's been ambivalent about his trips to the hospital - no kid likes them, let's face it - but he did enjoy playing with the bedpan (unused) and that has been the light relief for this interminably long weekend.

I am praying that normal service - on all fronts - will be resumed very shortly.

P.S. To those Bloggers and Tweeters who already knew of these events and offered their support and warm wishes - a heart felt thanks.



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59 comments:

Mark said...

Doesn't sound great. Creative use of a bed pan though.

Heather said...

Pleased to hear she is on the mend. Fingers crossed the boys don't kill you off before she gets back

Steve said...

Mark: It was and I joined in offering up my best Woody (Toy Story) impression. I think both he and the wife were suitably impressed by lines such as "somebody's poisoned the water hole"...

Sarah said...

What a horrendous weekend, Steve, but thank goodness it didn't end more seriously.

Best wishes to your wife for a speedy recovery.

Steve said...

Heather: they're certainly giving it their best shot...! ;-)

Sarah: we have a lot to be thankful for...

autumnraven said...

Wow...I guess you just never know. Glad to hear things did not go worse and hope everything gets back on track soon.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Crikey, love. Really sorry to hear that. Here's me
Banging on about have a bad cold, I feel
Terrible now. You're all in my thoughts.

CJ xx

Steve said...

Autumnraven: sometimes it's a comfort not to know what's around the corner - but thank God it wasn't any worse!

CJ: thank you. It's all relative and it was very much on my mind that there were other people in the hospital a lot less fortunate than us.

misssy m said...

Oh dear. I hope she gets well soon.

Steve said...

Misssy M: thank you - hoping to get her home soon!

vegemitevix said...

Thank God you decided to go to the Doctor! Pleased she's feeling much better, and that you are surviving your single dad stint. Did you know it's Dad's Week this week? :-)

Alienne said...

Oh no, how awful. I am glad to hear she is recovering, but what a dreadful weekend for you both. Coping with kids on your own is hard going - and the younger they are the harder it is. And there I was moaning about how long it took me to get to work today!

susie @newdaynewlesson said...

Hope she is feeling better soon.

Nana Go-Go said...

Terribly sorry to hear about your poor wife. She must have been in such agony. I hope she makes a speedy and complete recovery. Though I think masses of TLC will be in order when she gets home.

Gorilla Bananas said...

I'm glad to hear she's better and I hope you'll soon be back under her thumb. I shall ask our local witch doctor to cast an exorcism spell against the evil spirits bedevilling her colon.

Steve said...

Vix: Dad's Week? Hey this could have been planned! Hmm...! ;-)

Alienne: actually, I have to be honest and say the kids have been brilliant - I thought sending them to school / nursery today would be give me a break but I actually really missed them.

Susie: she's certainly feeling a lot better than she was last Friday!

Steve said...

Nana Go-Go: I think that's part of the problem; she has a very high pain threshold so this type of problem doesn't manifest until it's got really, really bad.

Gorilla Bananas: will accept your offer of a witch doctor without reservation. Curse away. Back under her thumb? I've never been away from it, my friend...! ;-)

Tenon_Saw said...

One never knows what is round the corner. Glad you had a good GP - they vary!

Nota Bene said...

hey poor lady...hope she's soon fixed...

Steve said...

Tenon_Saw: they do indeed - thankfully we saw the best one from this particular practise.

Nota Bene: beomg fixed up as we speak...

London City Mum said...

And as a Xmas present I will pay for you to take your test.

And that's a promise.

LCM x

The Sagittarian said...

Glad to hear it was an unused bedpan, the way the health system goes you can't be too sure these days eh!
Hope Karen's back up and about cooking, cleaning, pandering to your every whim ASAP. ;-)

rb said...

Oh crikey! How scary. It is horrid how quickly life can be turned upside down. I'm glad she is on the mend now and that life will shortly be back to normal.

Big hugs x

Being Me said...

Dehydration alone is incredibly uncomfortable, poor Karen! :( Sounds like agony. Gentle hugs to you all, I hope you can recoup some of that rest you'll all be needing xx

Vicky said...

Hope Karen is back home soon. Sounds like you had a great bonding time with the boys :)

Owen said...

Jeez Steve, it never rains, but it pours. Glad the other half got good treatment in time, and you may be getting to see a side of the kids that you might not have seen so closely before... now just imagine doing that 24/7/365...
Hang in there...

femminismo said...

Oh, I hope Karen is completely well very, very soon! Sorry to hear of this turn of events. Hope you two are conjoined forces soon. (Love the Paddington Bear stare! Can see it now and smile.)

Steve said...

LCM: aw that's a very sweet offer but alas it has been about 5 years since I last drove... I think I'd need quite a few lessons too; I'm afraid learning to drive is something I am going to have to defer until Tom is at school and we're a little more financially bouyant. But thank you.

Amanda: ahem. I do the cleaning thank you very much!

rb: thank you - the fact it came so fast out of the blue is very unsettling.

Being Me: so do I. I don't know how single parents cope - 3 days and I'm on my knees!

Vicky: I think it has done us all good in an odd kind of way.

Owen: I could not do this full-time on my own that I do know. My hat off to those that do it day in and day out.

Femminismo: thank you. I'm hoping a reunion will be on the cards very soon... just waiting for the say-so from the hospital (and waiting and waiting...)!

Very Bored in Catalunya said...

I am so sorry to hear that she is still in the hospital, hope she gets discharged very soon and back to good health quickly. x

Steve said...

Very Bored in Catalunya: thank you - just waiting for the doctor / consultant to review her case and make his decision about whether she's well enough to come home or not...

lunarossa said...

So sorry about Karen! Hope she's feeling better now and she will get home very soon. Colitis can make your life really miserable. Hope she can control her syntoms with medications and diet. Wish you all the best. Ciao. A.

Steve said...

Lunarossa: the doctors are now pretty sure it was a viral infection... so I'm hoping it won't be something that she'll suffer from again, however, with chronic IBS there's always going to be a risk, I guess.

Rol said...

Hope Karen gets better soon.

You, I couldn't give a monkey's about. Stop whinging and get on with it, man!

Steve said...

Rol: thanks Rol. I knew you'd help me put it all into perspective.

Clippy Mat said...

Ugh. Not good. Hope health and happiness will be restored soon and that your lovely wife will be restored to her rightful position as head honcho. Well done for holding the fort.
Well done that boy for creative use of cardboard bed pans.
;-)

Suzanne said...

Sending you lots of love and hoping your better half is fighting fit soon.
Keep your chin up x

Steve said...

Clippy Mat: I'm thinking of getting him one for Christmas...

Suzanne: Karen is now home and the world is at last as it should be!

libby said...

Sending good thoughts and wishes to all of you through the ether.

Steve said...

Libby: thank you - Karen is now safely home and much better. :-)

Fran said...

Hope the recovery is quick. That kind of weekend is one of those 'the best laid plans ...' weekends.

Steve said...

Fran: Karen has quoted that to me today in fact... but she's home now though signed off for the rest of the week.

Löst Jimmy said...

I am glad to read that Karen is on the mend. Not a nice affliction, having suffered from it in the past while working abroad...it ain't nice.
Well done on your domesticity survival

Steve said...

Löst Jimmy: I had a good teacher... the wife!

the fly in the web said...

Your poor wife!
My father suffered from colitis...but in those days you could have morphine for pain..which is what he had while recuperating at home.
I remember how the pain affected him though....
Haven't you coped well...and, I think, have enjoyed coping.

Steve said...

The fly in the web: I've certainly had a more enjoyable time than my wife! Her final diagnosis was infectious colitis so hopefully it isn't going to be a chronic complaint...

lunarossa said...

I'm glad tyo read that Karen is safe at home. Hopefully it was a one-off infection and it won't come back. I suffer from IBS myself and I know how bad it can be. All the best. Ciao. A.

Steve said...

Lunarossa: desperately hoping the same. Thank you!

English Rider said...

Checking in late, what a shock. I hope your world gets back to normal soon. Good health and bright spirits before the holidays.

Steve said...

English Rider: things pretty much back to nroaml now - Karen still weakened but home and very much on the mend; thank you.

missbehaving said...

Late as always, but sorry to hear all this has been going on and glad to hear your wife will soon we home, well done holding down the fort.

Steve said...

Missbehaving: all back to normal now (relatively speaking); Karen at home resting / recovering. :-)

EmmaK said...

Glad things have normalised. Here is a pic of Nigella in horns to cheer you up http://www.angelsandurchins.co.uk/blog/2010/12/08/nigella-lawson-the-red-nosed-reindeer/

Steve said...

Emma: blimey. I think my sweet potato has just reached the boil.

Selina Kingston said...

Oh Steve, only just got here! I'm so sorry for Karen and hope she is well and truly on the mend now. Hospitals are not pleasant places to be. Hope you are OK and getting over the shock of your loved one being so ill and having to manage everything that she undoubtedly does so effortlessly !

Steve said...

Selina: thank you - she's home now and resting (or at least trying to - not easy with 2 rumbustious boys)!

Wanderlust said...

I'm so glad Karen is home now and doing better (if she went to the movies, she must be feeling better, right?). That must have been scary. And I can empathize with the challenge of caring for two on your own. I'm sure you're glad to have her back on many accounts (as are the kiddos).

And thanks Emma, for posting a link that included a picture of Colin Firth - yum!

Steve said...

Wanderlust: very glad to have her back indeed and praying for a much more normal weekend this week!

Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip said...

How is Karen doing now? Sorry to hear that you've been all fighting a stomach bug as well. Horrible how when it rains it really pours sometimes. Feel better soon!

Steve said...

Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip: Karen has been signed off work until the New Year which is quite a shock but some measure of how ill she was. I think the rest is literally just what the doctor ordered.