Friday, December 11, 2009

Gary's trip to the hospital

What a week this has been. Tuesday night Rick, Gary and I enjoyed spending time together playing "Settlers". Gary had made some orange rolls and I had whipped up some hot cocoa in my new cocoa maker (thanks for the Christmas gift Mare) and we sat to enjoy our game. Gary had been complaining of a tummy ache since dinnertime so we had him take some tums to see if it would help. After downing 2 rolls and then attempting 2 more he complained that hs stomach was still hurting. After family prayer we went to bed. At 3:15 I heard his door open (yes, I had been awake since 2:45. It's the new thing in my life where I get up to use the toy-toy and then I lay awake for at least 2 hours trying to get back to sleep. My mind will not turn off becuse I'm thinking of all the little details for our Christmas in Nauvoo party! This ward activity has really taken it's toll on me. Crazy!) Anyhow, since I knew Gary had not been feeling well I knew it was him and I knew that he was not well. He was near tears saying that his stomach was REALLY hurting now. Rick said, "You'll need to get him to the dr. in the morning." I thought, there is no way I'm waiting until the morning" Rick gave him a quick blessing and we headed out to the ER. He had the chills( of course he did, it was what 1 degree that night. FRIGID!) I thought he had the swine flu. After the dr. examined him he told us it looked very much like appendicitis. He ordered a CT Scan just to make sure. Poor Gary. In all this pain he had to have a serum put into his body for the cat scan. Let me just say it wasn't put there orally. Gary by nature is very modest so I was trying to prepare him for the invasion of his body that was about to take place. And that a complete stranger was going to do it. What a trooper! He faired very well. After the Dr. saw the pictures he visited us in Gary's room (by this time they had admitted him) and said that he was 95% sure that he had appendicitis. The surgery was going to last a little less than an hour. Here's Gary waiting for his scheduled surgery time. Prepped and ready to go. He humored me and let me take a pic with his cap on. Well, after the first hour the nurse said that the Dr was having trouble getting to the appendix because of all the scar tissue from his surgery from 11 yrs ago. I decided to head home for a few hours since I had roughly only 3 hrs of sleep that night AND the RS progressive dinner was supposed to start at my house at 6PM. It was now noon. After getting the house ready and having a bite to eat I called Rick to see how things were coming. Still in surgery. Wow! It's now been 3 hrs. I take a shower and sleep for 1 1/2 hrs. Wake up and call Rick again. STILL in surgery. The word he is getting is that since the Dr. couldn't reach the appendix he called in another surgeon and opened him up. I didn't mention that he was supposed to be having laproscopic surgery with mimimal incisions. (previous to the surgery Gary was worried about having more scars. He has plenty for sure. He said, "My wife will not want to marry me because I have so many scars." I told him not to worry because with the laproscopic there is not much scarring. Now they have him completely open and they find that his appendix looks just fine with just a little bit of swelling. Just great! What is going on over there. Rick also tells me that the nurse tells him of some little holes that were found in his intestines. After 5 1/2 hrs in the operating room he is finally finished. The Dr. come in to tell us the real diagnoses. Gary had a kink in his small intestine which is common with people who have had previous surgeries. Apparently this has been coming on for some time because in foront of the blockage it had swelled to 4 times what it was supposed to be. Behind the block the intestine had shrunk and instead of producing the slippery stuff that keeps our intestines slippery it became infectious and the Dr described his intestines as spaghetti that had been sitting in a bowl of starch. They were all sticking to each other and the stomach lining. The Doc said that EVERY centimeter of his intestines were stuck to something. Thus the LONG surgery. They had to snip them ALL apart. Anyhow, that first night was rough for him.
For 2 months now Rick and I have been planning to go to Kurt Bestor's Christmas Concert and to stay overnight downtown. It has been scedule for the 10th. Well, we decided to still go to the concert (Aunt Ruth came to stay with Gary) and be back so Rick could stay with Gare for the night and I could stay with Kaitlyn. The concert was nice. This was our 15th year give or take and even though this wasn't my favorite performance it was still a night of wonderful live music.

Tonight we had tickets to the Mormon Tab Christmas Concert. I have been so excited for this but I tell you too much is too much. I felt I wanted and needed to be with Gary so I bowed out and Rick took Kaitlyn along with Mark and Tanja Nafts, some friends of ours. Gary has been planning since yesterday to have his best friend Wyatt come to have a sleepover at the hospital for tonight. It was to be a night of games and movies. I brought Wyatt up to the hospital at 5 and by 6:30 Gary was vomiting and chilling with a fever of 101+. We stepped out of the room and I said to Wyatt, "I think this is going to be a long night. If you'd rather not stay I can take you back home." Wyatt was really cute when he said, "No, Gary really wants me to be here". After another hour of Gary sleeping and it being totally quiet I asked again but Wyatt was in for the long hall. That's a true friend. Here's Wyatt working on his homework during the "quiet time". Gary has been doing fairly well today. He has started to drink a little bit. (Very little) and had a few crackers. He has been doing a little bit of walking today too. I tell you he is giving these nurses a run for the money. He is a very impatient patient. Not surprising because he is a very impatient boy. I hope all of you will pray for a quick recovery for him. I hope this is not a pattern for his future.I know this is has been a really long post. I will try to update again soon. The ward party is tomorrow. Man I'll be glad when sunday is here and saturday is behind me.

Oh, I've got to mention we got an e-mail form Sky this morning and he's shipping out MONDAY! He's so excited!


  1. Gary is such a trooper. We'll keep him in our prayers. Hope that his sleep over went well. What a good friend Gary has. Way to go Wyatt!

    P.S. Your home looked beautiful for the RS progressive dinner. You have such a wonderful talent for decorating. Thanks for sharing your home, we missed you.

  2. We talked to Rick while Gary was in surgery, I wondered what actually happened. I'm sorry he's had such a rough go of it. I'm glad they were able to figure it out. We'll keep him in our prayers.

  3. Oh Janell....WOW! Tracy filled me in on things a little bit yesterday. What a crazy weekend this has been. I sure hope Gary is doing better, poor feller! And have you gotten anymore sleep in all of this? I'm sure your Ward Christmas program was wonderful and you were able to pull it all off. We will keep Gary in our prayers.
    Love you!

  4. Janell, it was good to be able to read all this and catch up on the real facts regarding Gary's episode. How horrible for you all to have to endure!! Love, Karen