John arrived at Fairfax Hospital around 3:00 a.m. on April 10th. Treatments for MRSA began immediately and they were also aware of the old blood clot in his leg.  We were told he would need the vancomycin for six to eight weeks, which could be done at home if he did not go into rehab. 

His pain levels were so high that the doctors administered a morphine drip.  Daily I would go visit him after work but he was always sleeping. He would awake for a few minutes and then go back to sleep.  They were struggling to get him to eat, but as you can imagine, morphine kept him quite drowsy. John did not look well and his weight loss was unbelievable.  Here he was released from rehab on February 27th weighing 138 and he was now back down to 124. In just six weeks, he had lost all the weight he had gained :’(  I had to rest in the Lord at this point. I had no idea what was in store. O LORD my God, in thee do I put my trust…”  Psalm 7:1a

Thank God for my two dearest friends! One lives in Northern Maine (Vicky) and she and her husband were my prayer warriors. My other dear friend was always by my side when I needed to see “Jesus with skin on”! This day would be no different. She would once again show the love of Christ through her actions. On April 14th, Sandy and I went to visit John after church.  We spoke with his doctor and he explained why John had to be on morphine. He informed us that MRSA can settle anywhere and it can cause abscess in your spleen, kidney, and spine. Unfortunately, it affected John’s vertebrae which is extremely excruciating! He would be screaming in pain if it weren’t for the morphine drip. At this point, the doctor said they were also including other pain meds in his IV.  John was so drugged up and never woke up while we were there. He didn’t look good to us at all. We both commented how his skin appeared gray and the doctor reiterated how very sick John was.  

The  Physician tried to explain to me how they culture MRSA and I didn’t quite understand his medical terminology. His heavy accent didn’t help matters, I must admit. He became impatient at my ignorance which caused me to become quite agitated and frustrated.  This was my husband we were talking about and I needed to know exactly what was being done to him. I’m normally a very patient person but this doctor was very condescending. I gave him a piece of my mind and told him that he understood what he was saying but the terms he was using were not common to this layperson. He finally explained things to me so I could better understand. To determine if MRSA is still in body, they take blood and culture it for 3 days. It sits in a petri dish for all that time. Sometimes it shows up negative before that final third day but if it is positive, it definitely appears by the third day. At this point, it had not been three days yet so they couldn’t tell if the vancomycin had wiped it out yet. After visiting John for a little while, Sandy and I left as he had no clue we were there. 

The drive home was long and tiring.  Traffic was bad for some reason and it took me nearly two hours to drive 34 miles. I had not been home an hour when I received a call from the hospital letting me know that John had to be moved to the Progressive Care Unit as a precautionary measure because his blood pressure was dropping and they just wanted to keep me apprised.  Not 15 minutes later, the phone rang again and a nurse informed me that he had been moved to the ICU unit. She told me he had taken a turn for the worse and the family should come as soon as possible. Oh how my heart dropped! This is the worse news a wife of 45 years can hear! I immediately prayed to the God of miracles and asked the Lord to please work in John’s body yet again. I’m sure He was accustomed to hearing these words 🙂  However, I also prayed that His will be done in this matter. This is the best thing we can pray, amen?

Later on, Sandy and I would  both comment on how we noticed that John was not looking good that day!  However, I surely didn’t expect this! I called my youngest son, Adam, and he immediately left to come pick me up.  While he was driving to get me, he called Aaron and Tori, who were vacationing at the beach five hours away!  Bless their hearts, they left immediately to try to make it to the hospital before John passed. While waiting for Adam, I called our family our niece, Diane, so she could let the family know of John’s condition. Then I called Sandy, Tripp and our church secretary.  They all met us at the hospital to sit with us.  

When Adam arrived, we embarked on the longest 34 miles I’d ever drive. We talked about the possibilities of John dying and what needed to happen. We discussed funeral arrangements and the tasks that needed to be done. Wow! I never thought this would happen! When we arrived at the hospital, doctors and nurses were working on John. He was intubated and there was a lot of commotion in his room. The doctor came out to talk to us and said it was touch and go with John and he was very close to death. Adam and I were the only ones allowed to see him at this point as Aaron and Tori had not yet arrived. 

After things calmed down a bit, the doctors were waiting for a CT scan machine to arrive and we were given an opportunity to go in to see him. I’m thankful that John had no clue as to what was going on around him. Apparently the morphine caused his intestines to slow down and become obstructed. He never realized how close to death he was. We caressed him as best we could with all the tubes and IV’s surrounding him. We rubbed and kissed his forehead hoping he could feel our presence. Oh Lord, can this be the last time I see my husband? I could feel my heart sinking! I knew I needed to be strong for my sons – I needed the Lord to give me strength in this time of adversity. I wanted those around me to see God’s strength working in my life.  This was to be the testimony that I strived to leave for those around me.

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