Where do I start? On Tuesday Mrs. Iowegian said she wanted to go to Ledges State Park to see the leaves changing. I agreed that we should go as I was feeling pretty good, so I packed up a couple of cameras to make the trip. 15 minutes later, once I had the truck all ready to go, Mrs. Iowegian said she had a headache and no longer wanted to go. She has done this multiple times in the past and it tends to irk me.
I told her I was going anyway, which infuriated her. I jumped in the truck and left. The scenic route I usually drive when going out for autumn photos is usually a 105 mile circuit. Most of that route is county roads that are off the beaten path. I drove to the Ledges, then up through Boone, Iowa on Hwy R21 to Hwy E18, across to Hwy P70, to E41, to R18, and then Hwy 210 to Hwy 69. I give you the detailed route in case you are bored and want to figure out the route.
While driving through Boone, I started having heartburn (which, in no doubt was caused by letting the Missus irk me). I stopped and got some antacids and continued on my photo trip. By the time I got to Hwy P70, I had consumed a good portion of the antacids to no avail. But bullheaded me continued driving, stopping to shoot photos and eating more pills.
When I got home, my esophagus had swollen pretty much shut. I tried eating dinner but had to wash down every bite with water. An hour later, I was in pain trying to swallow. I called the online nurse for the VA and she recommended that I get my butt to the Emergency Room at the VA Hospital.
They did what they could to ease the pain by giving me what they called the ‘cocktail mix’ which numbed everything from the mouth to the stomach. They did a CT scan which indicated that I might have pneumonia (which I didn’t), so they monitored more. They could not get my heart rate below 118 and my respiration below 105. Finally, at 11:30 PM, they admitted me for “monitoring”.
On the 14th, they just kept pumping meds into me and telling me to rest. This sucked as visitors are not allowed in to visit patients at that hospital, so most of the time I was isolated. The staff though, was very compassionate and caring.
Yesterday, they did an endoscopy and found that my esophagus was very irritated (due to the radiation therapy) and gave me more meds. By yesterday afternoon, I was on the road to recovery for enough time that they let me come home at 4:00 PM.
I got home and laid down in MY bed to rest a little, and didn’t wake up until the alarm went off at 6:00 AM this morning. I feel pretty good except I am tired still. I am now on 26 different medications to help with the chemo and radiation.
Now, you know the rest of the story so far.