Saturday, September 10, 2016

Celebrations, Food Poisoning and Seizures

Oh my!

I love to make celebrations memorable and, boy, this year was a doozy but through no doing of mine.

September is a big month of events in our family. We have birthdays for Richard (husband), both of my brothers (Robert and Other Brother), one of Richard’s brothers (Mark) and one of our daughters (Caty).  Toss in our wedding anniversary and that is a lot of cause for celebration!
 
Three of the five September birthday people!
Robert, Richard, Rich (l-r)
Aside from all the celebrations, September has other milestones tossed in for me. My daughter, Rachel, had heart surgery as a baby in September. It is the month my mom died and the month that Richard almost died from his accidental Fentanyl overdose.

Big life events happen in our family in September.

I don’t get too melancholy about the difficult memories September brings but do acknowledge them. My main struggle through September is keeping the number of celebrations to a manageable level. I mean, apparently, having a celebration every five days is a bit too much for people.

We try to plan a big celebration to include everyone and then I like to do more intimate dinners on the actual day of the birthday.  We usually have a family barbecue at our house celebrating with Richard at the grill, the dogs running around underneath (and through, over, under) with all their dog-cousins and a delicious chocolate cake with several people blowing out candles.

In Robert’s words, it is always an “excellent” day.

Richard has been experiencing increased pain lately (we suspect the battery in his intrathecal pump is going out) so I suggested dinner out instead of the usual barbecue.  We get to enjoy each other’s company, eat delicious food and still have some chocolate for dessert. And no one has to do dishes!

What could go wrong?

Food poisoning is what could go wrong and did it ever!

Dinner out was Monday evening and Richard got violently sick Tuesday night. Rachel texted me Wednesday morning about how sick she was. Ack! I told her Richard had the same thing. I then contacted Other Brother: same symptoms. Richard’s brother, Jimmy, wasn’t sick but said he has a “gut of steel.”

I called Richard’s mom but she didn’t answer her phone for most of the day. Once we did reach her – yep, same thing.

Jimmy, Robert, Liz (Other Brother’s wife) and I were not affected. Wait – late Wednesday afternoon Liz succumbed to it.

Robert wished for his seizures to stop completely.
That brings the total to five out of the eight that ate dinner together struck with an awful bout of food poisoning!

How bad did it get? Rach and her fiancé, Matt, had to finalize some wedding plans this weekend so on Friday evening took a quick trip to Tahoe even though she was exhausted. On the way up, Rach texted me to say, “I forgot to bring pants.”

The after-effects are obviously still lingering . . . 

On top of the food poisoning, Robert had two days of seizure clusters! I don’t think it was related but it did add an extra layer of “WTF” to my week.  

September isn’t even half over but it has again proved to be another memorable month. Forgive me if I bury my head for the rest of the month.

Someone let me know when it’s safe to come out!