Yesterday after I had chemo infusion pump removed, I headed over to Bronson Methodist Hospital to visit my friend, Bill, who is marking his THIRD WEEK in Room E-226.
Bill is a co-worker who had has been battling kidney cancer for the past several years. He ended up at Bronson because of a bowel obstruction, and the first two weeks of hospitalization basically involved medical folks fluttering around in a state of uncertainty. Every day was another round of tests and theorizing and trying different remedies so they wouldn’t have to resort to surgery. Finally, last Monday, they threw in the towel and operated — just as well, since it turned out his intestine had gotten hitched on a staple from a previous operation, causng the bowel to twist and inflame.
So now he’s not in pain from the bowel obstruction anymore, but from the surgery. Poor guy! He can’t leave the hospital until the bowels are back in working order, which appears will take another few days at least.
As Bill and I were hashing over his situation, he got a call from his wife(another Gazette employee who sits next to me at work) who announced that another two work colleagues were in the hospital. What??? She had no details, so I went out to the front desk to investigate and found out that a photo editor who left the Gazette last month on a buyout is now in the Bronson’s cardiac unit. The other co-worker turned out to be at Borgess, not Bronson, and was being treated for a drug reaction.
Bill and I agreed that I should head upstairs to the cardiac unit, find out the deal with our co-worker there. I found Brad in great spirits for a guy who just dodged a heart attack. Says was feeling minor discomfort in his chest Thursday night and called his doc, who sent him to the ER. The ER folks took a look at his bloodwork and shuttled him to surgery,where he had a stent to open up a vein that was 90 percent blocked and also had a clot parked nearby.
The weirdest thing is that Brad, Bill and I are all in our early 50s, as is in the guy in Borgess. Is the stress of journalism making our bodies collapse? It is something in the water? We’re all perplexed.
At any rate. it appears everybody is on the mend and I made sure that Brad and Bill had each other’s room numbers, and hopefully they got in some male-bonding time today.
One other quick anecdote: As I was sitting in Bill’s room yesterday, his surgeon walked in, took a look at me and said, “Is the whole Gazette coming here?”
“Do you know each other?” Bill said to the two of of us.
“No, but I see her puss in the paper about every day, and my partner did her operation,” the doc said. He also said he works with my sisters Marcia and Colleen.
It really is a small world, after all.
Finally, a health update for my parents in Palm Springs: Felt surprisingly good today, considering it was the Saturday after chemo. I had enough energy to give the kitchen and bathrooms a thorough cleaning, make a batch of rice pudding and I also finished off our tax returns and Kat’s financial aid paperwork. Now off to the treadmill ….