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Dad Passed a Couple Kidney Stones

Kidney stones are the hardest stones of all.

three stones

Try not to think about it

Just saying the words kidney stones can make one cringe and cross their legs like crossing your fingers or knocking on wood.

Once you have had one, passed one, and recovered you know you never, ever, want another one.  But we don’t get to choose.  They form and exit on their own schedule.

Funny thing is, Dad’s 27 years older than I am and in the past couple of months has had his first kidney stones.  I on the other hand had my first almost 20 years ago.

I’ve given birth to three, each is a little different, each made a special memory.

The First Little Stone

Oh God, I wanted to die.  Just let me die.  The pain was incredible.  I was double over and throwing up like I had the flu, only worse.  I called my best friend Scott Riley, he asked a few questions then said “Oh, you have a kidney stone”.  Doc Riley wasn’t really a doctor, he never played one on TV either.  No Doc Riley had passed his fair share of stones over the years and was all to familiar with the signs.

“Get to the emergency room and don’t let them give you Demerol, start right off with Morphine.”

I did as instructed and was glad I had.  The Morphine removed the pain and I could breath again.  That little stone was almost done causing pain by the time I got to the hospital, taking it’s good ole time traveling the narrow passage way to the “Great Room” also known as the bladder.  Like a spelunker clawing it’s way through the narrowest of passage ways and backing up a flood gate as it blocked all liquid seeking exit to the great room.  Finally entering the great room the rush of fluid behind released the pressure and life began to return to normal.

I was home in a few hours and much relieved that such great pain and misery could leave as quickly as it had come.  I do remember on other interesting side effect from that first visit.  That afternoon I decided to test my blood sugar to see what effect if any the IV had on my sugar levels.  When the needle hit my finger to draw the drop of blood needed for the test blood squirted out my finger like a fire hose.  (It wasn’t as gory as it sounds in print).

Two Years Later Stone Two

I just love it when your kidneys take turns.  I knew at once as I was bent over in the ditch along the roadside in front of the new church building under construction that it was a kidney stone.  This time I couldn’t drive.

I got a ride to the hospital and the emergency room.  Same as before, skip the pills, go straight to the Morphine.  The male nurse that was giving the Morphine in my IV asked how much I wanted.  I said “Just enough to take the edge off the pain”.  He put about 1/3 of the shot in my IV and I headed toward the ceiling.

Not an out of body experience, but certainly a quick removal of the pain.

“No, that’s enough”

Wheeled down to x-ray and the story was the same.  Stone was almost in the Great Room.  It would pass in about 15 minutes or less.  Twenty minutes later I was about to get dressed and have the IV removed when I was approached by “the guy with the needle” in his hand.

“You want the rest of this?  It’s all yours.”

He had the kind of grin on his face like he knew from experience exactly what was left in that syringe and the total out of body experience that was free for the taking.

“No thanks, I’m fine.”
“Okay, Your choice.”

Two More Years – Stone Three – Ten Below Zero

It was a cold night in December in Iowa.  My son Josh and I were headed to visit my folks here in Tucson.  I wasn’t feeling too good as we left the house but it was time to go.  We were making the trip at night.

We were about 60 miles from home when we had to stop at a rest area.  I was getting sicker and as we were leaving, I recognized the signs.
“Crap,  Josh, I’m passing a kidney stone”
“What do you want me to do?”
“Drive, If I pass out, keep driving.  If you can’t get me awake in a hour or so, find a hospital”

I closed my eyes, gritted my teeth and held on.  It was a rough couple of hours, but history had told me that if I could get through the next couple of hours it would probably pass on its own.  I’d just do it without pain killers (or a hospital bill) this time.

We got to Oklahoma City sometime after midnight.  It was still 4 below zero there.  I had hoped it would be warmer.  I was in quite a bit of pain, but knew the worst was over (at least that’s what I told myself)

I kept thinking it had to get warmer soon, we were dropping south with every mile.  It didn’t.  We pulled into Hatch, NM and it was just above freezing.  We gassed up and I was able to drive from there.

When we pulled into my folks place it had been 22 hrs.  It was a rough trip.  I was sore for a couple of days.  It took me three days to warm up.

That was the last one; it’s been 12 years since, (knock on wood, or anything else).  I moved to Tucson a couple of years later.

You never forget those things. They make lasting memories.

Dad’s home, glad to done with them (for now).


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