The Start of It All

The hospital emergency doctor insists it is a migraine, I insist it is not, but something worse, indescribable pain and confusion. The “all knowing” calls for morphine and release forms to sign.

The pain NEVER subsides, only worsens. I keep insisting that it is ‘not a migraine.’ I’ve had many and this was completely different. But hell, what do I know? I don’t have a white coat and this isn’t a textbook. It’s just my body and my pain, my 50 years of experience and my gut feeling. A mother of four surely knows her children’s every health aspect, so surely she knows her own.

The God-like impersonator wrapped in white, straight out of the textbook arena, never a thought as to a woman’s intuition. Very sad that all the education required to serve and heal, yet very little, if any, is taught about listening to the patient’s feelings and knowledge of their personal situation. We, non-white-coats, understand how OUR bodies react to any situation with expertise; we own it!  We’ve read the manual, followed all the steps in correct order and played every game with fair intentions.

So why the change of rules now?  What lesson is hereby required to commit to memory?  Is it a history reminder or a harbinger of things to come?  Do I pack a bag or simply leave as I entered?  Either way, it really doesn’t matter anymore. I was sent home.

It was later when we arrived in Ixtapa, Mexico that the abscess in my skull had grown into a pressure beyond my control and screams filled the small coastal town. So loud were the screams for help that the police were called. They, thinking someone was being murdered, came running to our door.

The local Naval Hospital was ill-equipped, as you can imagine. I was airlifted, via Lear, directly into San Diego. By the time we arrived at Scripps Mercy Hospital, I was at the edge of life. Rushed into emergency surgery, I was given a 2-5 percent chance of survival. If I were given that gift of survival, surely I would live in a vegetative state.  The miracle? I survived – the gift I think, I’m not a piece of vegetation.  Pretty close, but no green.