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The Longest Stay

In 2008 I was taken to the Cleveland Clinic and spent over 45 days in patient. The experience is foggy in my memory at times; which seems to be a natures way of allowing me to move forward in life and not dwell on hardships.The important facts stay the same and remain clear.

Through this period of 45 days my husband never left the hospital and my mom traveled back and forth from our home in Michigan. They are the foundation and support on which all my hope and dreams were built.

I started out 2008 traveling with my husband. He was working as a long haul driver. Through out the spring the pains in my stomach grew worse. By the fall I had been hospitalized a number of times. I’d seen a number of doctors, and was extremely frustrated with the hospital roulette.

The longest medical stay started when I headed to the emergency room because of pains in the fall of 2008. They couldn’t figure out what to do so I was held at the Henry Ford in Detroit. The very first night I was met with officers attempting to remove my husband from my room. A doctor was finally called. After I told her “if he leaves I go with him” she said let him stay.

Finally, after about four days they transferred me to the Cleveland Clinic. However, the quick response I believed I would receive in Cleveland didn’t happen. Instead, they held me under observation for an extended period of time. Unwilling to operate without a set objective and unable to identify a specific surgical problems.

I was in the hospital for a few weeks when one of my ovaries developed a bleeding cyst requiring surgery. To this day, I find it odd that was the reason they decided to open me up. The logical part of my brain questions what caused this problem. Yet the other side says forget the why and accept it was what got the ball rolling.

After surgery, the recovery was slow. They kept me in patient for a few weeks afterwards. Finally, the decided they wanted me to go to a “rehab” facility or “nursing” home as they are commonly referred. Having been in the hospital over a month I made the decision that if they didn’t want to keep me in the Cleveland Clinic I was strong enough to go home.

While that may not sound logical to most, choosing to be with my family rather than in a nursing facility was an easy choice. My family had always been there to help me and I knew they would help me through this too. I was lucky to have a supportive family at home. My family and visiting nurses allowed me to skip the rehab facility.

I fear those places because of numerous bad encounters with overworked nurses. For example, during this particular stay when things were unclear I had a nurse who wanted to draw blood from my PICC line (IV placed in an artery with a line to the heart) but the nurse didn’t have saline flushes.

I told her no. She got very upset and said rather rude things. It did end well.