Friday, August 1, 2008

Well dear readers and lurkers. It has been quite a week let me tell you. So sorry that I have been lax in the blogging department but hopefully, when you read what has been going on, you will understand.

As you might have guessed we were on vacation last week. We had a great time just being lazy at "The Cottage" in Cedar Lake, IN. We ate, read books, ate, walked, ate, went tubing (thanks Rob), ate, went to the movies, went out to eat, visited with the maternal parental units, ate. You get the picture. Of course, Dan would have been riding in RAGBRAI if not for that pesky broken ankle (spiral fracture playing baseball on June 29th) but instead he came with us for the week. He was still "non-weight bearing" and using crutches but he could get around and go in the boat but was spared the ignominy of tubing as an aging adult. We were all set to return home on Friday (the 25th) so that Dan could see the ortho doc, get the cast removed, have new x-rays taken and hopefully get a walking boot. That was OUR plan. GOD had different plans.

A tad past midnight on Friday morning Dan woke me up with his groans of pain. I have to say first off that my husband has a VERY high pain threshold and is not a complainer when it comes to pain. He was IN PAIN, lots of pain, under his left rib cage, his left shoulder and he had some shortness of breath. I am a nurse by background and started running different scenarios through my head (heart attack?, kidney stone?, gas?, pulmonary embolism?). I also made the decision to go and wake up my father who happens to be a physician (thank goodness). We quickly decided that it was most likely a pulmonary embolism (blood clot in the lung for those of non-medical background) in the left lung. Dan would be at risk for one because of the broken ankle and weeks of sedentary lifestyle due to the break. PE's are nothing to fool around with.

So, we all got dressed and off to the hospital we went. I didn't know how to get there so Dad drove the van (at a greatly increased rate of speed) and we walked into the ER at St. Anthony's Hospital about 12:45a. The ER doc was great, efficient and pleasant (or as pleasant as someone can be at 1:15a). He sent Dan up to CT scan where they confirmed that, yes, he did have a moderate pulmonary embolism in the left lung. They had Dan up in ICU by 4:15a.

The rest of the weekend and the first part of the next week were spent in the IMCU (step down unit) of the hospital as they worked to get Dan stabilized on blood thinners. He didn't have much energy the first day or so but by Sunday he had his Blackberry and computer to do some work. I spent every day at the hospital with Dan while Mimi and Papa kept the home fires burning and brought the girls over to the hospital every day. On Friday (the day of admission) the orthopedic surgeon came in and took Dan's cast off, ordered an x-ray and said he would be back Saturday. After reviewing the x-ray he felt that Dan didn't need another cast and could be fitted with a walking boot that could be taken off at night. YAHOO!!!

Instead of arriving home on Friday th 25th we finally got home on Tuesday the 29th. Just a small detour. I have heard of people (that means you Lauren) who get to extend their vacation because they are having so much fun. We extended our vacation but we just didn't do it correctly.

So what does this mean for us? I must say that the Lord's gracious hand in all of this is so evident to us. We are praising Him for all that He has done for us, both seen and unseen, during these days.
- We were close to good medical care in the form of St. Anthony's Hospital.The care that we recieved (with one exception) was excellent from the CEO of the hospital (yes I did have a conversation with him) to the woman who came in every day to clean the floor. The nurses and patient assitants were amazing.
- We were with family and the girls had some place to stay. Mimi and Papa were AWESOME!!! They are the best parents in the world. Mom kept cooking excellent things. Papa was a tower of strength and did some internet research for me.
- Dan's little "crisis" could have happened anywhere along the 6 hour drive home. That would have necessitated getting off the highway and finding an ER because this wasn't a situation that could have just waited until we got home.
- We have discovered that the Lord has been protecting Dan physically for a long time. In the course of some blood testing that was done at the hospital, it was discovered that Dan has something that causes him to be 3-6 times more likely to develop clots that might cause DVT's and possibly embolisms. As some of you know, we travel fairly frequently to places where good medical is scarce. If this had happened in say Ghana or India the outcome could have been different. Praise the Lord for His loving watch care over us!!
- Dan and I got to spend lots of hours together talking. Now, I would have prefered to do that talking on the beach in Hawaii but I was grateful that Dan was THERE to talk to me.

So sorry that this has been long but there was no other way to do it. We are home now and I will be back to blogging on a more regular basis. I have a ton of things to talk to you about, you will be sick of it.

Bye for now.


  1. Your readers should know that 1 in 10 pulmonary embolisms result in death the first hour. God was indeed good to you! Who would have guessed that someone as healthy as Dan came that close to moving on. It just goes to show you that no one should ever take his or her next breath for granted (nor those people who we love).

  2. On the lighter side, maybe you should take a vacation with us and we'll show you how one can properly be extended! :)


  3. You guys can show us how a real vacation is done! But then, who would watch the cats and the houses?

  4. Ooh, I didn't think of that! Maybe the cats can watch each other. We could leave them instructions and the house keys!


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