I'm cutting and pasting from my journal, 2003
06 January - Monday Night
My God, I am tired. Poppy got sick--again--yesterday afternoon around 4:30. He was fine at breakfast with the Wests and Deegie and Taylor. He was fine when we walked around the circle. He went to the store for ice cream, made himself a Coke float and called Mickey and then called Babs. After that, he went to bed for a nap, and I came back here and found him shaking with a chill and complaining of nausea. For the next 12 hours, he languished, vomiting a little bit from time to time. We considered going to the ER, even got dressed to go, but we changed our minds, deciding that we could better weather this here at home. Around four thirty this morning, the diarrhea started, and by ten, we had changed Poppy three times and changed the bed once.
I worry. Now Poppy’s knee is swollen and very painful. I have given him a pain pill and a half since about three o’clock this afternoon. He even asked me to go up in the attic and fetch his crutches. Shit. Could he have some sort of infection in that knee? I worry that his knee has caused these fevers, which in turn caused him to have cardiac arrhythmias, which in turn caused the nausea. That doesn’t explain the diarrhea, I know, but that could be caused by the fever and the stress of it all.
Anyway, tomorrow morning, we are going to Macon and get some answers.
08 January 2003
Yesterday afternoon, Poppy was admitted to the Medical Center directly from Frank Kelly’s office. By the time we got to Macon, his pain was excruciating--despite taking Lortabs twice during the drive. Gary Hataway drained the knee. I saw the fluid. It didn’t really look like pus. It looked more sero-sanguinous to me. Frank came in after that and said the knee was infected and would have to come out. I must have gone into some sort of shock for just about half a minute, because I didn’t hear anything else he said for about that long after he said the knee had to come out. Then I was working so hard to stem the tide of tears that was building behind my eyelids that I barely understood when he described what would happen and what we could expect. I think Frank was almost as sorry as we were. His normally long face was even longer, and he kept saying, “I am so sorry,” over and over again.
There is a stable of doctors looking after Poppy. He not only has Frank, but he has Maria and Jimmy Smith (hematology), plus an infectious disease guy whose name I can’t remember. I like them all, so does Pops.
So, tomorrow the knee comes out and they put in a spacer of sorts called a cement block. It will have to be in for four to six weeks while Poppy gets IV antibiotics. Then, when things are clean, another total knee replacement. Shithellfuckdamn.
15 January 2003
What could be worse that watching someone you love suffer? I am as much exhausted from being witness to Clint’s agony as from the days without sleep. Thank God that, during the early morning hours of Sunday, he was able to get a little comfortable, and that became a turning point of sorts.
Now I'm back in the present. 2003 was a series of disasters, not just Clint's knee infection and his being confined to be getting IV antibiotcs. We had family problems that aren't germaine to this blog. It's enough to say that it was truly a year from hell, but throughout that nightmare, Clint and I had one another. I worried about him every waking minute and he worried about me. Our love once again made the unbearable bearable.