Wednesday, March 16, 2016

the unexpected turn of events in florida--part 2

I thought the worst part of our potter trip to Florida was tendonitis.

Holy cow was I ever wrong.

This is Jr sleeping during the day in Florida.  Or trying to sleep.  But he was in serious pain and had nausea with accompanying vomiting, etc.  We thought it was a stomach bug.

We dragged him around the hotel and airport and he dragged luggage and eventually we got on the plane for home. 

By the time our nearly five hour flight was finished, it had become clear to me that Jr was really sick.  Something serious was wrong.  I didn't know what it was, but I knew it required an ER visit.  STAT.

We checked into the ER at 11:30.  Blood work, urinalysis, poking/prodding, and ct scan confirmed he was suffering from appendicitis and needed an appendectomy.  STAT.  They took him back around 5:30 saying they'd be back in an hour.  Two and a half hours later, he came out of surgery, minus his just-beginning-to-rupture appendix, and feeling so.much.better.

It is no good seeing your kid feeling so crappy that he tells the nurse his pain level is a "ten" and you know he truly understands what that means.  So glad he's feeling better.  Hoping he's on the way to all better soon.

Monday, March 14, 2016

the unexpected turns of events in florida

Jr and his friend, Erica, and I have been in Florida since last Thursday.  We flew in early and were fortunate to be allowed to check into our hotel at 5:00 a.m., so we got a few hours of sound sleep before heading to the beach.  [Sidenote:  Erica flew into SLC from her home in Omaha on Saturday for a couple of days of skiing before our trip to Florida but unfortunately on her first ski run at Snowbird, fell and broke her ankle.  No good.  But she was still ready to make our trip with her boot and crutches and said she'd consider a wheelchair if she absolutely needed it.  Jr was prepared to push her anywhere in that chair.]

After a few hours of sleep, we got up and drove to Cocoa Beach, which, surprisingly to us, was sponsoring a surf tournament, which meant there was nowhere, not one parking spot available there so we headed north to Daytona Beach.  Along the way, we saw massive numbers of motorcycles--first one or two here and there and then gradually increasing numbers, dozens and dozens and eventually in Daytona Beach, perhaps hundreds of thousands.  [NOT AN EXAGGERATION.]  I got out my phone several times to attempt to document how completely surrounded we were by bikes, with accompanying biker dudes and biker chicks, but was just a little unsure of the photo-taking protocol with bikers.  As we were driving, we kept thinking we needed to stop for food, but every sign outside of every restaurant had language that welcomed bikers.  We weren't sure if they would also welcome us--in our rental Jeep--or if the bikers would welcome us.  So we drove on and on and eventually made it through the masses to the beach at Daytona.  Still more bikes and bikers.  And signs welcoming everybody to the 75th Biker Week at Daytona.  Finally, we understood.  The 75th annual Biker Week at Daytona--opportunity of a lifetime to spend two weeks with all of the biker dudes and biker chicks in the world all gathered together at Daytona Beach.  AND WE WERE THERE!

This is a photo from the internet and I'm not really sure it captures how many bikes/bikers/biker chicks were in town for biker week.  I'm warning you though, don't go googling bike week unless you want to see lots of biker chicks.

Traffic, even with motorcycles that take up a whole lot less space than cars, was terrible.  Like Las Vegas strip speed.  Slower than walking slow.  SLOW.  Eventually we made it to the beach where Jr was thrilled to be able to actually drive on the beach and park on the beach and play on the beach. 

After an hour at the beach in a serious wind, we decided to head back to the hotel for a bit more sleep to prepare for our days of fun at Harry Potter World.  But even in very windy wind, the beach and the ocean were still awesome.

We rose early and headed to Potter World.  Erica quickly realized that renting a wheelchair was not just a great idea but was actually going to be totally necessary if she was going to spend more than ten minutes in the world of magic.  It was going to be a lot of walking.  A lot.  Really a lot.  Jr was more than willing to push her in a wheelchair so he could hurry us along to get on all of the fun rides and into the Leaky Cauldron for breakfast and etc.  So we--Jr and I--pretty much ran everywhere while he pushed Erica.  Or maybe he just walked his usual "I'm so freakin' excited" walk and I tried to keep up.  It was such a fun day.  We laughed and rode rides and marveled at the reality of it all and just generally enjoyed ourselves.  After a long day of fun, we headed back to the hotel and crashed into our beds for a good nights' sleep and sweet dreams.

The next morning we got up, ready for another fun day at the park, only to discover Erica's ankle was having none of that.  She insisted Jr and I needed to go back for more and she would ice and elevate her ankle for the morning and then join us midway through the day.  So off we went to catch our bus to the park.

As we left the bus and started walk-running to the entrance, my foot started complaining that something in it needed to pop.  Before long, it wasn't just asking for something to pop, but was starting to hurt.  And that pain increased the farther we went until I was doing some sort of funky toe/ball of foot walking motion because putting any weight on the outside of my foot sent pain shooting up the outside of my leg.  But we soldiered on, riding the rides, marveling at the things, buying the hoodies, eating the cornish pasties, and etc. 

Midday, as promised Erica called and said she was ready to meet us at the park.  My aching foot/ankle suggested we head back to the hotel.  So we did.  And then I insisted Erica and Jr head back to the park for the afternoon, which they did.  I iced and elevated and googled "sore lower outside of leg from walking."  Hrm.  No Good.

Did I mention Jr made me wear his extra fitbit so we could compete for the title of person who walked the most steps?  Did you know walking while pushing a wheelchair makes a fitbit not count your steps accurately?  Does it seem crazy to have walked 17,743 steps in one day?  And then have an ankle that refuses to walk without protest the next day?  But it looked like I walked the most steps.  I didn't actually, but it looked that way.

The next morning we all rose early, determined to head back to the park together.  Uh not on my ankle.  Jr is very good at taking care of people but I didn't think it possible for me to walk anymore or for him to push two of us in wheelchairs so I sent them on their way, promising to join them after I bought me a new pair of walking shoes and some type of ankle brace or wrap or something.  And off they went.  Because Jazzies seemed like a bad idea if only two of us would be in them and Jr would be able to walk faster than we could drive a Jazzie.

I took the Jeep out in search of a Sports Authority.  Found myself some great new sneakers plus ankle braces and even cushy inserts for my shoes.  Alas, my ankle was still protesting.  So I stopped in at the urgent care facility, waiting a couple of hours, having an exam and a couple of x-rays all to confirm that I did indeed have tendonitis (boo--google was right), which would likely respond to a course of prednisone and more icing and elevation.  The doctor said I should give it 48 hours and I'd be on the way to better. 

Just in time to be back in the office.  YAY!

It might sound like this trip was a bit of a bust, but not really.  Would it have been great to spend all four days at the park and the other two days at the quiet, sunny beach?  Sure.  But we still had a great time. Time spent at the beach, or at an amusement park, or with my kid and his friend are all swell.  We've laughed and enjoyed each other and looked out for each other, which is all good, no matter what else.