Why the title?

"Pioneers take the arrows"

Oh, wait. I should be upbeat and taking arrows doesn't sound like an upbeat thing to say.

So, let me amend that statement.

It was courage and vision that led the pioneers to leave behind a comfortable, settled life and trek West to begin a new life in a new place. Many of those from the East that went West found a strength within themselves that they didn't see while they were in their old life. Instead of being one of those that just kind of went along with the others in the old life, they became leaders and visionaries in their new lives.

The sentiments of that last paragraph come from a favorite author, Louis L'Amour, in many of his books. So, I can't really say that it is an original thought from me. However, what he said is truthful.

Welcome to being a pioneer. Look ahead and ignore the "barking dogs" that give you negative opinions and comments. Louis L'Amour also spoke of the barking dogs.

In some of his stories, it was usually a father or older man telling a young boy how it was that when the Westward bound Conestoga wagons rolled through towns, the dogs came out to bark at them. His character then told the young listener that the barking didn't stop the wagons from going on to their destinations.

Following the advice of the Louis L'Amour characters, may we all forge ahead with our plans, after carefully considering all consequences and leave the "barkers" behind.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Perhaps Not for the Faint at Heart


Lurid details to follow….

….you’ve been warned.

I’ve not done anything in the way of reading blogs, reading or posting or forums, or writing on this blog since last Tuesday, January 17. The reason is because I have been sick, which of course, was enough to give it to Jo as well.

Last warning…..

…..details following.

At about midnight on the 17th, I started out with vomiting and diarrhea, sometimes with both going at the same time. It is not fun to be sitting on the pot evacuating from one end and holding a trash receptacle in the hands evacuating the stomach.

I had no sense of time that evening, but Jo tells me that I was up about every 30 minutes from midnight until 5:00am accomplishing those “chores.” After 5:00am, it dropped to about every hour for a couple of hours. At one point in the early stages (no recollection as to second, third, or subsequent times) I became flushed, light headed and ended up lying down on the bathroom floor, feeling like I was going to pass out.

Wonderful wife that she is, Jo was there for me each time and when feeling the urge to pass out, I couldn’t speak but did manage to tap her arm with my hand to let her know that I was still with her. (That significance will be understood as we progress with this.)

Wednesday, I was absolutely out of it because I spent most of the day either asleep on the bed or the La-Z-Boy loveseat recliner. But, apparently I wasn’t done yet. Jo fixed me an egg for supper on Wednesday evening and I ate half of it and two little cubes of cheese. (Protein, you know.) Within an hour, that was also evacuated.

My first thoughts were that I had food poisoning and we even discussed the meat in the TV dinner I had for lunch the day before. Jo felt bad because she thought the meat in the dinner looked odd, but fixed it anyway.

Thursday, I felt better, enough that we took off in the afternoon to go to El Reno to follow up on some actions that we had started on Monday on our way back from seeing Alicia and Slade at Rolling Retreats in Elk City. They are friends and also the newest DRV dealers in Oklahoma. On our way back, we stopped at our favorite car dealership and test drove a couple of Ford F150’s with the thought of trading our Mercury Mariner in on one.

So, we went back to El Reno to do the trading. At the time, while I didn’t feel good, I had Jo doing the driving. She expressed the concern that she was beginning to feel bad as well, but thought she could drive back home with no problems. Such was not to be.

On our way across 39th Expressway (old Route 66) in Oklahoma City, she suddenly pulled into a crossover lane of the 6 lane street and stopped. She simply said, “It’s coming,” and I knew what was about to happen. (More lurid details coming…..again, you’ve been warned.)

When Jo gets sick enough, she passes out, but unlike anyone I’ve ever seen. She goes stiff as a board, eyes wide open, and completely unresponsive. The first time this happened in my presence, I freaked out, even though she had warned me in advance. I’ve learned to not panic, check for any response (even checking for a pulse - normally not present due to a drop in her blood pressure as well), and simply talk to her to “come back to me.”

Usually, after such an “episode” she comes to with a diarrhea and vomiting event accompanying it. This time was no different.

When she stopped, because of a vehicle in front of her, she couldn’t get clear out of the left hand lane, thus blocking traffic in that lane. She did have the presence of mind to put the truck in park before passing out. I jumped out just as a young lady behind us started honking at us because we were blocking the lane.

I ran around the truck and was unable to open the door as it was still locked on her side. The window was down just enough for me to reach inside and unlock the door, so I did so and then just held Jo and talked her “to me.” Then, the young lady jumped from her car and came to assist me. It turns out she is a fourth year nursing student and she was invaluable, to a degree.

We are convinced that the young lady and the first responders all thought that Jo was having a seizure our perhaps a stroke. I applaud them greatly for their concerns, but the old man whose been married to Jo for 43 years should have some bearing on their actions. Think of it, no one else has lived with her as long or knows her as well, not even her parents (now passed on) or our kids.

Knowing Jo’s reactions to such events, I was hesitant to call 9-1-1 because this was not new to either of us. But, the young lady called anyway and soon the police, fire rescue, and an ambulance were on the scene. When they all found out Jo had had an angioplasty about 6 or 7 years ago, they insisted on taking her to the hospital.

Her hospital stay was only for a few hours in the ER, with her being upset that the nurses had to clean the results of diarrhea and vomiting off of her. She was given an IV which really made her freezing cold and even 6 warmed blankets gave her no relief from that. After about 4 hours, the doctors determined that they couldn’t really find a good reason to keep her and gave her the option to check herself out. She chose to go home to her electric blanket where she could control how warm she was.

While the doctor was surely concerned and really wanted her to stay in the hospital, even if only to alleviate their fears for her health (and perhaps cover any concern of negligence), Jo decided that the hospital didn’t need to “earn” about $1000, or whatever, for an overnight stay.

We went to our doctor on Friday, the 20th, and he agreed that we probably both suffered from a stomach virus. We are now on the B-R-A-T diet (Bananas, Rice, Applesauce [Yuck], and dry Toast) and will go off of that tomorrow. The cruddy part is that I can’t have dairy products for a while, so I can have no ice cream or cheese. And, I’ve got some nice mild cheddar in the refrigerator.

Jo has set an appointment with the doctor so they can now explore the possibilities of any other possible health issues that could be causing her “events.”  However, since she has been this way since she was a small child, I’m not sure of what they can find, although I do have this little hope that there is a cause that could be addressed.  Her “episodes” still scare the crud out of me.

Meanwhile, we are just lounging around and doing practically nothing. We start back to work in the morning. The one saving (?) grace is that Jo was off this week with vacation time, so she was available to take care of the 65-year-old “baby.”

More on the “new to us” truck later, which has been “christened” with Jo’s episode, but cleaned up again.

Funny Fuzzy


  1. While it probably is not much consolation, I have read on several blogs about experiences with this virus. Seems a nasty one but at least swiftly goes away. Hope you both feel back up to par soon!

  2. ewww.... Surely there is lots of this stuff going around as my daughter had same thing last week in NJ. Glad Jo had a little bit of warning before passing out so she could get off the road. Could have been a whole lot worse.


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