Sunday, March 25, 2012

Geocaching on the Lam

Last Tuesday I got a call from one of Brian's co-workers saying that he was was complaining of chest pains and they had called an ambulance. When I arrived at the hospital they said he wasn't there yet. I waited a while, but an hour later he still wasn't in their system. I called his office and the other area hospitals, and I even put out an all-call on facebook, just in case he got in touch with someone. A staff member finally dug a little bit further and found out that Brian was in-fact there but under a different name. I was relieved.

When I went back to Bay 5 he was mumbling incoherently. A nurse came in a few minutes later and started asking me questions about his medications and symptoms. It was then that I realized they knew nothing about him - he was basically a John Doe.

I decided it was time to start figuring things out myself. I found Brian's iPhone, turned on the Voice Memo feature, and started asking questions. What followed was 20 minutes of Brian telling me some very useful things about his symptoms, and some very random things about Girl Scouts, zombies, and the Dry Tortugas.

A doctor came in some time after I'd had a tearful breakdown and told me the cat-scan was negative for brain damage, meaning he had not had a stroke. Bloodwork was also normal, so not a heart attack, either. They were treating him for an overdose.

We were told he would be admitted and observed for the night, but a few hours melted into 24. The ER isn't particularly conducive to sleep, so I went 41 hours without it. Over time Brian's speech improved and he got more normal.

Two days later, an MRI revealed that his episode actually was a stroke. We've been at the hospital for 5 days now while they run a battery of tests to figure out why a healthy 40-something with no risk factors had a stroke.

Today he was given permission to go outside and get some fresh air. We took it a step further and went over to next parking lot in search of a cache, which is a stone's throw from the hospital. The cache is literally 381 feet from his room, but on the way back we got busted by the hospital fuzz. Sargeant SeriousFace was not pleased with our liberal interpretation of the doctor's orders. After getting confirmation from the nurse that we were allowed outside (although not off-property, oops), he let us "go," but followed us all the way back to the cafeteria.

I don't regret it. In the words of Hot Chelle Rae, it's been a really, really messed up week (Brian's stepdad passed away on Wednesday), yet he has been nothing but pleasant and compliant. This escapade was well-deserved, even though we got a little more adventure than we bargained for.

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