221) Early Dialysis for Michigan

February 22, 2008

El Milagro: I am here on time bright and early at 6 am on the dot. Actually it is dreary and early, not bright and early and the only brightness is the glisten of neon in the puddles from pre dawn drizzle. I am really tired since I got up and zoomed over here without even a drop of coffee… my thought, “just go over there… no time for making coffee… go and go back to sleep…” I was just here last night, and took off 2.4 kgs, weighing out at 75.3, .3 over my dry weight. This morning I weigh in at 73.1, so I lost some weight since I left last night? This is one of the mysteries of life, dialysis, and sleeping. And, I am too drowsy to think much about all these numbers and mysteries.

As I am walking in I see and nod hello to Matt the Tech and Debbie the Tech, who I never see anymore cause they work MWF. A tech that I sleepily assess to be a new guy comes up to me in my chair and introduces himself as Blake. He ploddingly sets up my machine almost as if he is doing it in slow motion, like my current state of wakefulness. I blink my eyes and then blink my brain to see if this perception is me… but even after blinking he is plodding. I cannot tell if he is unsure of every move, half asleep, or just really cautious. He does tell me every step he is taking and by 6:30 he is finally ready to stick me. He sticks alright but isn’t sure of his work so he calls Bear the Tattooed Tech over to review his work.

When Blake asks me how much weight I want to take off, I relay that was just here last night and today weighed in at less than my dry weight and ended with, “…so what do you do in this situation?” He shows a blank look, shrugs and says, “Take off the minimum?” like he is answering a test question. I can’t figure out if that is ‘his final answer’ or a question to me, so I just say “sure and we are off to the slow motion morning again. In the back of my brain my small worry voice is predicting that this is a BP crash waiting to happen.

So the batteries on my radio need changing and I change two of the three and it works and I lay back to listen to the morning NPR offerings and snooze… for about two hours until I start feeling a cold sweat, general wooziness, and faintness associated with low BP. I look over at the machine and my last BP is something over 49, the 49 in red, signifying to any observer that the machine thinks it is too low. The next time it takes my BP both the numbers are showing red… 70 something over 45. I get Jason the Tech’s attention and he gives me some saline to bring the BP back up. It seems to take a 10 gallon hat of saline to get things back to normal and finally it is time to leave and I’m feeling better. I pack up my stuff and my brain is on into scheduling the day, thinking of all the things I have to do before catching a flight to Chicago at 4 o’clock.

I weigh out at 73.1… the same as my coming in weight! Oh well… at least my blood is clean. Since I’m still under my dry weight, I’m okay (meaning; not feeling it was a waste of time) with the session.

Later: Shayna and I are all packed and on our way to the airport, where we’ll meet Lizzie and catch a flight to Chicago. We’re flying American, so, of course, the flight is 2 hours late. We wait and Shayna gets ice cream and we finally get on the plane and fly across the country. Landing in Chicago is easy and before we know it we’re shooting out through Chicago, on our way to Paw Paw, Michigan in a rented wide-track Pontiac with brilliant RED dash lights that almost are too much. It’s cold cold cold in Chi-town, so we all get to wear our winter overcoats and boots. We find a good Jazz station to listen to and get into Michigan before stopping at a Flying J Truck Stop for dinner. I get a hot roast beef sandwich that reminds me of Midwestern real American Food… thick, heavy with Dark Brown gravy that sticks to your ribs. There is snow everywhere but thankfully not on the roads… and Shayna is delighted to touch and jump into her first snow experience. We get to our motel in Paw Paw by 11 and are happily ready to sleep. Tomorrow we will attend a memorial service for my Aunt Marilyn (see Post # 209, January 2008) who finally passed on and we will introduce Lizzie to my mom’s family, see the cottage, and visit with relatives. What a day.

Notes: In at 73.1 and out at 73.1 Kgs.
New Readers: For an INDEX, click January 2008 on the Sidebar and page down to post # 207.

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