Today is Monday, June 5. I am in England waiting to be cleared to fly home. On May 13th Mike (my lovely hubby) and I flew to London. Our son-in-love James picked us up at Heathrow and whisked us quickly to Bristol where James, Emi and our baby granddaughter Ida live. We’d been trying to schedule the journey for months, but now seemed like the perfect time. We would be with the kids for Ida’s first birthday. We were so excited and happy to spend some time with the Carmichael’s.
When we left Illinois, my allergies were kicking in. I brought along some Walitin (Walgreen’s version of Claritin), hopped on the plane and 7 1/2 hours later we landed in London. By the time we landed my cough was more marked, and I had a proper cold.
We were all coughing soon. Mike and all kept moving and functioning. I sat and tried to rest. I was ill for our entire 10 days with the kids. I wasn’t sleeping as I continued to cough through the night…through the days…through sweet Ida’s birthday party.
The morning came for us to leave for home. We were being picked up by a taxi at 3:00 am to catch our 6:30 am flight home. I was absolutely miserable: exhausted, so sick.
The alarm went off at 2:30 am. I woke Mike and started to get dressed. I was hot and sticky from the humidity. I managed to get my clothes on, but couldn’t get my socks on over my swollen feet. Mike was trying to put my socks on for me when suddenly my vision and speech started to slur. I found myself absolutely fascinated by the patterns of the living room wallpaper. Chevrons running up, up, up the wall at various speeds. Squares and blocks of shadowed patterns continually moving. It was so interesting to watch and yet so bizarre. (BTW: the living room walls are painted light gray. There is no wallpaper; there are no patterns on the wall.)
Mike had woken Emi. They would talk to me, but my answers were slurred. I was so distracted by the patterns on the wall. And I was so tired, I tried to answer their questions, but it was such hard work. I would begin to answer then stop because I was so distracted by what I was seeing.
The cab came to pick us up and Mike sent it away. Next there was a lovely paramedic in front of me. Asking me questions that I could answer, but it was such hard work. Kinda like trying to talk and be understood underwater. Soon the ambulance arrived. Two more lovely paramedics, one man and one woman, (equal pay for women! Woo hoo) helped me to walk to the gurney in the hall because they couldn’t get the gurney into the small living room. One on each side, they were literally holding me up as with my strange visions I couldn’t tell up from down. Soon I was strapped to the gurney, in the ambulance and on my way to Southmead hospital. (The same hospital where Emi gave birth to Ida.) Mike came in the ambulance with me, but I couldn’t see him as I only saw black in the upper right quadrant of my vision, and that’s where he was sitting.
Initial diagnosis: pneumonia and a possible stroke.
I’ll continue this narrative soon. I’m tired now.
Just know, dear readers, God was with me every inch of the way. Ever present and allaying any fear. He is so good and so faithful and so completely loving. Thank you all who have been praying for me. I am lifted to heaven’s gate by your support. God bless your day! Meet you at the Kingdom…Magic Kingdom or otherwise.