389) Our 2009 Holiday Card

Friends ~ this has indeed been a big year for us, including:
~ Jack's successful kidney transplant in March

~ John's graduation with a BS in Biology in May

~ Katie's September return to Texas State with a new major: Interior Design

~ Shayna's Bat Mitzvah in November, ...and

~ Liz's love, support, and organizing skill through all our challenges & celebrations!

We wish for you health & happiness in the New Year! J~L~J~K~S

[pics from the Bat Mitzvah]


388) A Trip to the Emergecy Room

December 20, 2009

Home: Every day I am more out of the fog of a "simple virus" that started with a sore throat last Thursday, the 17th, like a train pulling out of the station on a track that was not only heading to the wrong destination, but also through an alternate universe not dissimilar to chugging through Dr. Parnassus' mirror. Actually, if I had had more time in delirious states, it would have been like the excitement Dr. Parnssus imaginary world offers with its surreal obstacles. Mine were only comparable in my own mind, which is STILL not in its right station...

And, as I have promised to everyone, I will arrive on time in the RIGHT s
tation and ready for the next two day's normal agenda... driving out to Columbus Texas with my sweetie to do two Trainings for CCYFS while Liz shops the little town, and we stay in a B&B.

Thursday afternoon, I was at the office, finished preparing for Columbus, and planning for Friday's Office Party, where my responsibilities included 1) making chicken enchiladas for 8 staff, 2) finding a final gift to give as a "Secret Santa", 3) considering which book to pull outa my stacks for gifting in our Books White Elephant. OH, and also, for my busy evening, buying some last minute Hanukkah things for Liz's family, and wrapping ALL
my gifts for Friday night.

Liz was at the University wrapping up her work before two weeks of vacation, and then making her final plans for our last day Hanukkah festivities, also Friday at sundown at our house... plans which included buying and wrapping the last of the family presents, shopping & cooking the traditional latkes brisket for 12 of us, and straightening house... you get the point. That was our "normal" time schedule for our Austin Nowicki Hanukkah Train for the next 24 hours or so.

So, I am there in the Thursday afternoon, talking to my colleague Kim, mentioning that my throat is really sore. She shares, "Oh yeah... that's what everyone had... first it'll be the throat, then the drainage that won't stop, then the...."

"STOP! That's NOT gonna happen! Don't even describe it to me... you know how suggestible I am! Just keep that to yourself. I'm gonna be fine..."

"Right. I hope so... and don't think you're coming in here Sunday to prepare for Columbus..."

"I'm ready now"
I responded... and we went on to compare presents, thi
nk about the party, etc.

When I got home I decided to take a little nap and begin the pre-cooking of the enchiladas after Survivor. I started boiling the chicken... and that train pulled thru
Parnassus' mirror, outa the station and into an alternate reality... while I lay on the couch, napping in and out of the rest of the evening. Liz was worried, and I kept saying, "I just need some sleep..." at 9 o'clock, 10, and sometime after midnight. Around that time my "plan" was to sleep... get up at 5 a.m. and cook enchiladas while figuring out how to do the rest.

At 5 am Liz wakes me and says I am HOT... and takes my temperature.
.. no big deal... it's only 100.2, here's some Tylenol. "I need to sleep a little bit more..." I say, only just barely recognizing I am completely out onto a new track that is not headed where I think I am going.

At 8 she wakes me up for my meds and we call Bernadette and leave a message. She calls back and, like the Swiss Conductor, punches my ticket and tells me about my next stop.
"You need to go up to the Emergency Room at NAMC and get checked out completely!"

"Really? I have things to do...."
and she interjects, "...like go to the Emergency Room. Do you want to make sure y
our kidney is okay? <-- actually, I was off into a moment of rationality, imagining striking the items off my list. As I draw an imaginary line thru each item, the motion leads to an image of the people impacted and my hallucinations of how I am "failing" them. Wait, that voice yelling "failing" is my mom's.Then I realize Bernadette is my Dr Parnassus and she IS imagining my reality!

I call Kim and share that I will BUY and send over enchiladas ("don't worry about it); that I am at the Emergency Room (well, don't they already know it is the flu? <-- everything is the "flu" to Kim); (Should I cancel Monday? I respond, I'll be fine by Monday, I'm sure).

I am soon to step onto the landing at the Emergency Room of NAMC! I even have my cell phone with me!

So, Lizzie hauls me out there. I am feeling 22% better, after the Tylenol, and my fever is down ... and am fairly quickly brought into a room to await Dr. Milner. Is he Parnassus / Bernadette too? Liz waits for the beginning to begin before going down to the university to finish her pre-holiday work. BTW... her train is on the wrong track too. It is 9:30 am.

We get outa the waiting room and into a treatment room fairly quickly... Bernadette has called ahead with a "reservation". The nurses, head nurse Chris, and Doctor Milner are friendly... and get right to the job of taking blood for testing. Liz leaves for the university and I read my new book, Isiguro's An Artist of the Floating World... recommended to me by Johnny.

Sometime later Dr. Milner returns and reports on my blood work: no flu, no strep, creatinin is fine. I am ony a bit dehydrated so he offers me a pint drip. That takes another several hours and we finally get out of there at around 4:30 pm.

I still feel miserable with sore throat and body aches so Lizzie takes me home and puts me to couch for a rest. I sleep on and off... mostly on... through Friday, miss the family Hanukkah, which has been moved over to Jen's house from our house. And on Saturday I get up in the morning feeling fine for an hour or two... and then it is out on the couch for most of the day til I have to get up to wrap presents for our own Hanukkah with the kids. We make green enchiladas and have a pretty good time with the kids around, sharing our gifts and catching up with everyone's lives.

Sunday I get up and feel fine for even more hours.

December 21, 2009

By the time Monday rolls around I am back to 95% and Lizzie and I head out to Columbus for me to do a training gig at CCYFS and us to stay at a B&B for a "romantic getaway". Liz drops me off for my afternoon training and goes shopping and then we head over to the Little Red House (servant's quarters for the Magnolia Oaks B&B). This place was really a comfy little cottage that we had all to ourselves and we got to meet and chat with John and Nancy (the owners) before we headed back to Austin on Tuesday afternoon.


387) December Doctor's Visit

December 2, 2009

NAMC: In for my 8 month check up with Dr. Lewis. My vitals were healthy (BP 126/60), and I answered all the nurse questions to indicate that I am healthy, etc. I was happy to see Bernadette, back from her vacation.

Dr. Lewis looked over my labs, asked questions and commented that all continues to be good and that there is a miniscule amount of blood in my urine... taking us off onto a discussion of the blood in my urine throughtout my life, bed rest and home schooling during my second grade year at Topath Elementary School in Avon, Connecticut, and my complete records being destroyed in the US Army Medical Records building fire of 1957 or therabouts... in St. Louis...

So, he wants more regular blood work, ending up in a 24-hour collection and next appointment in February.2010.