Yesterday consisted mainly of clock watching. It started early on at the Doctors where I was back to see my 2nd choice GP. She was pretty much on time, which is a Miracle in itself for any of them at the surgery, so was this the start of a lucky day? I went in and straight away, like a hawk diving for its prey, she zeroed in on the knee. The moment she said ‘that’s got worse since the other day hasn’t it?’, I knew I was in for a long day. Sure enough she was on the phone to the on call SHO (Senior House Officer) – who turned out to be a really nice on the ball guy – at the Hospital. This was the start of round 2 with the knee infection.
We stopped off at home to pack my bag and yet again I had to say goodbye to Cody (my Labrador), I miss him while I’m in Hospital. Dad took me to A&E where the clock watching started again. To be fair I was triaged reasonably quickly and taken through to a room. I was hooked up to the monitor with a blood pressure cuff and a clip attached to my ear lobe. The Nurse left to get the bits she needed to take blood but didn’t return very quickly, in fact I was hooked up for well over half an hour, I know because I was clock watching.
She came and back took my obs (observations) again then she put in the cannulla and took some blood. After another excruciating wait the SHO came in, asked loads of questions and pulled and poked the knee and leg about. He said he had to talk to his boss so we waited again. When he came back I was sent round to X-ray, to our surprise there were only a handful of people in there. I couldn’t see the clock in the waiting room but it didn’t seem to be that long before X-rays were done and I was back round A&E. Apparently the SHO and Consultant had been looking for me while I was in X-ray so missed them, this meant another long clock watching session.
A jolly Health Care assistant came in to take the mandatory MRSA swabs and another set of observations. She was lovely, really smiley and joking about, some people may not appreciate that but I thought she was great. A porter came along to take me up to the ward but we weren’t actually sure I was being admitted or not. The porter recognised me from the last time I was in and thankfully he was taking me to SSU (short stay unit) 2, the same ward I was on before too. So there we sat, clock watching. I was nil by mouth, and had been from A&E, but still not sure if I was being admitted or not. The Consultant was in theatre and they had no idea when he would be out to see me.
Eventually the SHO came back and said that the Consultant, who apparently was new and excellent, was still in theatre and I was nil by mouth. I asked if that meant I was being admitted or not so my Dad could get my bag from the car a go home. He apologised we had’t been told I was definitely being admitted, Dad could have gone home ages before. I arrived in A&E at 10:45 and was finally admitted at 16:45, 7 hours of clock watching but it didn’t stop there. A Consultant eventually came to see me but now the Consultants had changed over, so I didn’t get the really good one after all.
The Consultant came to see me, it didn’t go well from the very beginning. For a start he wasn’t the really good one, secondly he did what I absolutely detest the moment he met me. He shook my hand but held it for ages while he was talking, may not mean much to some people but its a very big deal for me. I felt extremely uncomfortable and it put me off him straight away, in fact he was creepy. He looked at my knee, prodded it a lot and said he didn’t think the infection was in the joint but on the surface. He told the SHO to put me on the evening list where he would perform an aspiration of the knee, depending on what they found in there would dictate the next course of action. He did the same handshake ritual when he left, smiling and being so convinced that he had this in the bag. So there I sat, clock watching, waiting to go to theatre. By 21:00 I though it probably wasn’t going to happen so got ready for bed. At about 22:30 a Doctor came round to take blood cultures, she told me it could take a couple of days for them to grow the bugs and get the results. Still not started on antibiotics as they wanted to get some results and do the aspiration first.
I was on my phone looking through Facebook when I scanned a comment, carried on down the wall, stopped for a moment and went back to it. There was a comment from my cousins daughter about her Aunty who had passed away, I wondered if it was someone from the other side of her family. After reading the comment again properly I realised it was my Cousin. I phoned Dad to see if he knew about it, he told me that my Aunty had phoned and told Mum that morning, she waited till after they had had dinner before she broke the news to Dad. They were going to tell me today as they thought with everything that was going on it would have been a bit much. We found out a while ago that Doe (my cousin) had inoperable cancer, in three places down one side of the body. When I spoke to my Aunty the other week she seemed to be doing a little better and she would have a few treatments of radiotherapy and then chemotherapy, I think. You can imagine that it came as a real shock when we found out she had passed away. All my Dads immediate family live in Somerset so we don’t see them that often but that doesn’t mean it hurts any less. All of the family are in my thoughts as they come to terms with their loss. She was such a lovely person, bubbly and smiley, and my big cousin.
You were taken far too soon but will always be remembered. Rest in peace now Doe, you are forever in our hearts.