I’m still trying to find consistency in the chaos that is Covid-19. I’ve had phases of super productivity and then panic phases of ‘oh-shit it’s still here’ and then back to chilling and then something else happens so I turn on the news again. One thing is for sure – watching the news is definitely the factor in determining how I feel about life. The less of it I watch the better (with the exception of Cosmo and the odd business related snippet on Linked In).
So where were we in this old tale of tiredness? Ah yes…the sight of blood in a London hotel room. No there wasn’t a murder, nor a knife fight, just a pasty blonde shortie bent over a toilet getting sweatier by the minute and a piercing pain in her side.
I reached for the hotel phone and attempted to call 999. No dice. It was making this weird beeping sound when I tried to dial out and wouldn’t work. A few attempts later I decided to press the hotel reception number. It wouldn’t work either.
I decided to ring the hotel from my mobile. The reception picked up ‘Hello Hotel from Hell’ (well they didn’t actually say that but they would really deserve this accolade if that was a thing – Gordon Ramsey should definitely check it out).
‘Hi I’m in Room 303 can you call me an ambulance?’
‘Where are you calling from?’
‘I’m ringing from inside your hotel…your room phone doesn’t work’
‘Ah ring one from your hotel room phone’
‘Yeah no it doesn’t work I’m just letting you know so you can let the ambulance into my room as I am getting really weak and I’m not sure I can barely move the pain is so bad’
‘What room are you in? Call us from your room phone’
‘Yeah no it DOESN’T WORK’
Honestly. I was ready to lose my mind at this point I don’t know why I didn’t call the 999 myself in the first place. I think because the pain was so bad and I was worried that I was going to lose consciousness. I wasn’t thinking straight. I thought for some odd reason getting them to do it would be easier…WRONG.
I then called 999 and went through all the questions anyway and told them the name of my hotel. I rang the reception again:
‘Hello its Room 303 again’
Me (panting by this point): ‘Room 303 I have called an ambulance and it’s on its way, can you let them into my room cause I can’t get up’
Idiot receptionist: Ah yes yes no problem.
******FIFTEEN MINUTES LATER*****
A knock comes to the door.
Ah it must be the hotel people.
‘Come on in..’
A gruffly voice: ‘Hi erm it’s the ambulance can you get to the door’
Me –drenched in sweat at this point and absolutely not fit to move but still keen not to be an inconvenience even if it was the ambulance’ : ‘Erm yeah just give me 5 minutes’
In tortoise pace I managed to hobble to the door, welping every step with the pain and holding on to my side. I managed to turn the handle enough so they could get in – it was a FIRE DOOR – of course it was.
I can only describe the person standing on the other side as the Australian London Ambulance version of Joe Wicks. OF COURSE HE WAS.
It couldn’t have been a nice older lady or an unattractive male. Oh no. It had to be this total babe of an ambulance man that I had to invite into my boke cave.
Him and his other ambulance colleague walked into my room and calmly inspected the surroundings. After asking me a few questions they asked me to hobble with them to the lift.
In the ambulance they gave me paracetomol which promptly hit the eject button on my stomach and I was sick for what felt like the millionth time. They asked me my details…this part becomes crucial later. I told them my name was ChrisTINE. However I noticed as the Joe Wicks lookalike was taking notes he paused for a second studying me carefully. Paranoid I patted my face and then he goes..
‘Quick question… are you normally THIS pale?’
Me – bemused- Eh yes I’m quite pale but I would imagine I am a lot paler because of the sickness
Hottie mc hotterson – Ok, thanks I think that’s all the details I need. We will make our way to the hospital now.
As I held onto my side, we made our way towards A&E.
On arrival at A&E they tried to give me paracetomol again and I was sick AGAIN. This seemed to speed up the process and I was whisked into another section of the hospital. I was crying at this point. I know. The humiliation. My only saving grace was that the corridor was vacant.
A nurse turned the corner into where I was parked up in this wheelchair and I was injected with morphine ( I think – could have been paracetomol, could have literally been anything..) and an anti sickness med. The relief wasn’t immediate and I remember I was then transferred into a cubicle where I think I got more morphine because the pain was still there. I was then on one of those blue fold-down beds and eventually I passed out.
I awoke with a sharp prod ..erm rude. This doctor was standing over me. It was time for my ‘exam’ in which he decided to poke every part of my stomach and ask ‘is this sore?’ ‘is THIS sore?’ I was nearly jumping off the bed it was so painful, the morphine that I had or whatever dream elixir I had received a few hours before had well and truly worn off.
After that I was moved onto the general A&E ward to await a scan to see what was going on in my stomach. I sat there until approx 11am the next morning getting my morphine topped up and drifting in and out of sleep. I awoke to a nurse gently asking if she could take my OBS (blood pressure etc). At this point I looked at my hospital bracelet and noticed that it said ‘ChrisTINA’. I told the nurse but they assured me that it was probably best to leave it as it was.
Some time in the afternoon it was my turn to go down for a scan. As the wheelchair trundled along the corridor I pondered what it could be. From my research on google it seemed likely that it could be my Appendix. Lower right abdomen…yes that must be it.
After a short wait, it was my turn to be scanned.
You will be familiar with this type of scan, cold jelly put on your tummy and a hand held scanner pressed across it – instead of a baby though they were looking for any abnormalities.
I was making small talk with the radiographer when I noticed she was getting quieter and quieter. She was going back and forth over my stomach and hitting buttons on the screen to get a better look over a certain area. Her brow became furrowed as she studied it.
At that point I had never seen Greys Anatomy. If you have seen it you know when they call in Addison (earlier series) or Arizona shit.is.going.down. Well I hadn’t seen it at this point so I had no idea.
‘I’m just going to get someone else for a 2nd opinion’ said the radiographer, brow still furrowed.
A man came in then and did the same scan. He nodded to her and they motioned that I could put down my top and that the scan was finished.
I was wheeled up to a ward as an ‘Outlier’ I was told, a term meant for someone who is in a ward different to what they are in the hospital for. I was placed in Gastro and told I was to wait there on another scan.
I still had no idea what I was there for. I decided at this point that I should probably tell someone that I was in hospital.
I picked up my phone and texted my friend and asked her ‘What will I do if I can’t get on my scheduled flight tonight? Do you think I will have to book another flight on our system – I don’t have my laptop in hospital’
Her response was hilarious because I was sitting there, in hospital, worrying about an expense report for work. Ridiculous when you think about it.
She text back quickly along the lines of OMG ARE YOU OK?WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU ARE IN HOSPITAL. WHO GIVES A SHIT ABOUT THE FLIGHTS? YOU NEED TO TELL WORK YOU ARE IN HOSPITAL!
I had a wee chuckle at that (high AF on morphine at this point) and then I proceeded to put together a few texts to family that I was in hospital.
As the texts streamed through I got a text from my boyfriend who had been updated all night on the events as they unfolded – ‘I’ve booked a flight for tomorrow morning – see you soon x’
I had also text a friend who I had actually met up with on my first night and she brought over essentials like a toothbrush and other things I hadn’t even thought to pack. This was an act of kindness that I will be eternally grateful for. She even left me her Ipad incase I got bored and wanted to watch it. I could have cried at her thoughtfulness. She sat with me for a few hours but I kept falling asleep with the morphine but I will always be grateful for her quick action to get over to see me because I honestly was so out of it I hadn’t even thought about essentials that I needed (my packing was woeful and I didn’t remember things like PJS and toothpaste).
I drifted off to sleep…all was quiet in the ward. ..for now…my crazy neighbourinos hadn’t yet been admitted but stay tuned. This is about to get hilariously horrific.