September 2017 ; A Not So Good Month

Misadventure in Life

First I want to thank those who inquired about my condition these past several weeks.  Your thoughts and prayers are so very appreciated.

July and August had been month’s of activity and travel that one aspires to when they retire. I turned 70 and life seemed to be good as I reached that milestone.

At the end of July we went to West Virginia for a family reunion. Following that we went through Shenandoah National Park, the Blue RIdge Parkway and a number of other sites. The end of August we went to South Carolina to visit family and participate in the ‘Great Eclipse’ event.  On both trips we took the slow back-road routes home and enjoyed seeing things off the beaten tourist paths.

After returning home I felt somewhat drained and attributed it to long hours on the road. I did little for about a week. A week after getting home I had an appointment to sell an item I had on Craigslist so I forced myself to meet the buyer and help load the item on his vehicle.

After the buyer left, Judy observed that my color was bright yellow and said “get in the car we’re going to the hospital”.

That was the beginning of 11 days in the hospital. It was discovered that my bile duct was constricted and also contained stones. On the 3rd day a 90 minute endoscopic procedure removed the stones. At the same time a stent was inserted to expand the bile duct constriction.  The side effect of this procedure resulted in severe pancreatitis. The pain was horrible, I thought I was dying. For the next 8 days I fought pain and tried to recover enough to go home. Finally, on the 11th day I told the nurse I was going home. Doctors had by that time agreed the sooner I left the hospital the better I would be.

At home the recovery continues. Day by day there is some small improvement. I’ve been home a week but not recovered fully.

The future calls for another endoscopic procedure before the end of the month to check internally how things are healing.  In a month or two another endoscopic procedure will be performed to remove the stent. Because there were stones to clear, the doctor said a future determination will be made to decide if my gall bladder needs to be removed.

I lost three weeks so far. The end of summer is always a productive time with cooler weather and preparation for Fall and Winter. This setback was unexpected and put a real crimp in my plans.  This misadventure isn’t over yet and I don’t know if I will ever recover this lost time.

Again, thanks to all of my family and friends who have sent flowers, cards and called me to offer support and prayers.