I slammed on the brakes and threw the minivan into park. In moments I was kneeling on the side of the road holding onto the guard rail as I would a life preserver. My only thought was, “Oh God, I’m going to pass out and crap on myself. What is my poor wife going to do?”
WARNING: This post contains personal information of a “bodily functions” nature, so proceed with caution.
That’s how the story starts. It was the end of a long drive to Atlanta, GA on Thursday night; the beginning of another chapter in my gastrointestinal woes.
A mere fifteen minutes away from my sister’s house, I turned the minivan around to head back to some stores and restaurants that we’d passed. My gut cramped and screamed at me to get to a bathroom. I’ve dealt with diarrhea on the road before, but this was different. When the buzzing in my ears and the white noise started creeping into my field of vision, I knew I needed to not be driving.
Eventually, I got back into the van and Aubrey drove me to a drug store about a mile away. She had to guide me into the store and to the bathroom because my vision was so bad. I could barely remain standing or walk straight. Not half an hour earlier I was perfectly fine.
One extremely long bowel movement later, I regained enough composure to clean myself up and get back to the van. We made it to my sister’s house where I immediately made the first of many visits to my new best friend; the toilet. What a way to end a road trip.
Sleepless in Georgia
Oh, what a night. There was no position to be had which produced even a semblance of comfort that night. I spent about a third of the night in the bathroom.
I couldn’t really pass all that much, but felt a strong need to be in the bathroom. What I did pass was liquid.
Trip to the E.R.
The next morning, Aubrey and the kids were getting ready to go on our planned activity and the reason for this trip. We were scheduled to attend a Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament with our home school group (Classical Conversations).
My first bathroom break of the new day provided much horror. I discovered that what I had been passing was blood. Just blood.
I told Aubrey and she was as concerned as I was. She cancelled our trip and took me to an urgent care center nearby.
The doctor was very nice. His diagnosis was a minor case of diverticulitis.
I’ve never passed blood before and the volume that I was passing was, to be honest, terrifying. So I was expecting that they’d want me admitted to the hospital or something. I’m not saying I was disappointed, but what I was going through didn’t feel very “minor”.
He prescribed some medication (an antibiotic and something to reduce acid) and said I should start feeling better in a few days. So that’s it?
Oh wait. He did say that I should get a colonoscopy when I returned home. That’s certainly something to look forward to.
It is amazing that such a little thing can completely incapacitate us. I was completely fine one minute and then I was desperately clinging to consciousness on the side of the road. All because of a “minor” malfunction of my intestines.
I’m not sure why I’ve had to endure the problems with my digestion over the past year. I do know, however, that it reminds me of how fragile this life is. That doesn’t scare me… not completely. My hope is not in anything this world has to offer. It’s not in the strength of my mind or my body. It’s not even in my family or relationships. My hope is in Jesus Christ and the knowledge that my name is written forever in the Book of Life.