Two weekends ago Pearlie got sick. On the Saturday night she was in a lot of pain. I thought it might be the crampy, colicky pains she suffers from occasionally and managed to settle her down. The following night I awoke at around 2am and was unable to get back to sleep. I was listening all the time to hear if she was crying out. Then at 4am I was just about to drop off when I heard her wailing. I raced downstairs. Her bedside lights were off and the overhead light was dim and I wasn't wearing my glasses so at first I did not see what ailed her. As I moved closer to the bed I saw that she had been vomiting blood. A lot of blood. I got Bert up and she continued to vomit. I called an emergency ambulance and they arrived about 30 minutes later.
She was kept in hospital for four days and several tests were carried out but they could not identify the point of the bleed. Gastritis was mentioned, as was a burst ulcer. She received a few blood transfusions. On the fourth day she was discharged. Five days later her tummy started to swell and her navel turned from an innie to an outie. Her skin was tinged a yellowy shade. I called the GP who was concerned enough to refer her back to hospital. They kept her for a few hours, did an X-ray and some blood tests and sent her home again none the wiser. Apparently it is 'normal' for an elderly person to have a tummy so hard and swollen that their navel pops out.
This is what I think. The hospital (Antrim Area) does not give one damn about patients in their late eighties. They are seen as nuisances and bed-blockers. And this is what I want. I want her to be at home but I want to know what is wrong with her so she can receive the appropriate care and support. As it is we live from day to day never knowing when there is going to be another incident. Bert and I are both so stressed.
And Pearlie? At the moment she is OK. Happy to be home. She is still bloated but does not seem to be in pain. So - until the next time.