I’m a single father and caregiver of my six year old son. I have had kidney stones so I know how it feels like having one. It is very painful.
One Saturday morning I woke up feeling weird pain going to bathroom and I realized that I have kidney stone.
I didn’t have any pain at that moment and I knew there is no drug remedy for most kidney stones, but I really believe in natural remedies, so I drank a bit of Apple Cider vinegar with water and I took my son and we drove to store to buy natural herbs and basil and I was going to juice the basil because I heard basil has a chemical that helps breakdown kidney stone.
All of the sudden, while driving, I felt a very sharp pain inside my abdomen; I could hardly drive from pain. I arrived at the VONS grocery store and with lots of struggled walked in there and bought Tylenol, then decided to still walk to Trader Joe’s, which was a couple of stores down to get the basil. The whole time, I’m walking with my son and thanks God for the iPad, my son was busy playing with his iPad, but he knew I’m in pain.
While walking to Trader Joe’s, I felt like I’m going to pass out from the pain, the pain became intolerable by now combined with major nausea and I could not walk anymore. There was a little health place called Eden IV, I walked in there with my son and there was a very empathetic helpful lady there who gave me water and told me I better take a Lyft to the hospital because Tylenol is not going to reduce that kind of pain.
The first thing I did I called my ex-wife telling her that I have kidney stone and in major pain, please come and pick up our son, she lived 10 minutes away, but she said that she is busy with construction work.
I called a friend, thanks God she was available and I let her know that I’m on my way to the Scripps Mercy Hospital ER in Hillcrest and she said she will be on her way to care for my son while I’m in the hospital.
The Lyft arrived, I barely could walk, the Lyft driver took me to my car where I got the booster seat for my son and Lyft driver took us to the Scripps Mercy Hospital ER in Hillcrest.
I arrived to the hospital with my six year son; my friend was not there yet, she was about 30 minutes away anyway, I walked in and told the nurse up front that I’m in 10 out of 10 in pain and nausea and I can hardly walk, she hand me a paper to fill out, I could hardly write, but I filled out the paperwork anyway.
I looked around; thanks God, there was only one patient waiting in that big waiting room.I ask the nurse what do I do? She said walk the paper to the sign in counter. I walked very slowly while feeling my inside was being cut by something, in lots of pain, I hand the sign in paper to the lady sitting in the counter. She stared at me saying:
“Sir, if you want me to sign you in, SIT DOWN”
I told her, “ma’am, I have 10 out of 10 pain in my abdomen and cannot sit”
She took my sign in paper and entered it in.
Then I waited in the room, while my son wondering around the waiting room and playing with things, he is six and very sweet and seeing that I cannot even stand straight.
The other nurse finally checked me in to take my blood pressure, I had to take my son with me. My blood pressure was 164/112, which is considered Hypertensive Crisis and could be life-threatening, I could have heart attack or stroke.
After taking my blood pressure, the nurse asked me if somebody is there to watch my son. I told her not at the moment, but my friend is on her way. The nurse told me that she cannot help me because I had my son with me and I have to wait in the waiting room until my friend arrives.
My abdominal pain was getting worst and worst by the minute, now I had 20 out of 10 pain and nausea waiting in the waiting room for my friend to arrive. What if she is stuck in the traffic? Am I going to wait in the waiting room until I die from pain while my six year old son watching me dying?
Thanks God my good friend showed up, saved my life by being there and took my son.
I told the nurse, the caregiver for my son arrived, please check me in.
She said that they are cleaning the room. I did not understand this because the entire hospital had one person waiting in the waiting room and they did not have any room for someone with life-threatening blood pressure!
It seems like that hospital did not really want to help me.
Finally, they took me in, the doctor asked me what is going on. I told him that it is more likely kidney stone because I had similar symptoms and my pain is 10 out of 10. Shortly after the nurse showed up and gave me a shot saying this is a pain relief specially for kidney stone. She gave me a bottle to pee in and left.
I waited in the room, after 20 minutes the pain came back, but this time the pain and nausea was much stronger and persistent. So I pressed the emergency button, the doors to my room was shut, I kept yelling, help, help, help, I’m in a very bad shape, my pain and nausea is back and it is stronger now. No one came.
Then I end up calling the hospital front desk, telling them that I’m in one of the rooms, begging that I need the doctor because my pain and nausea is intolerable now, and no one is responding to my emergency calls.
Times going by and no one is coming to help me and I’m locked in this closed door room. So I opened my door and saw the hospital staff sitting there, I yelled, help help please please I’m in very intolerable pain. Whoever these staff people were, they acted as if I’m not even there and could not hear me, they were staring at their monitors, it seemed that they were admin staff, but couldn’t they call the doctor?
Finally, the doctor showed up seeing me in more pain and the nurse showed up and gave me a pain and nausea medication that worked this time. After the second shot I felt heavy and relief from pain. Earlier I could not go in the cup, but finally I went in the cup.
I passed the stone in the hospital. But I could have easily died from heart attack or stroke because of the pain and nausea and its effect on my blood pressure.
The nurse who took care of me was very nice and empathetic and did her best. She was the only person who showed that she cared, but the rest of the staff showed no caring for a man who walked in with a child that was dying from pain.
I know I had no choice to take my six year old son with me, so what if my friend was not available to help with my son, they seemed to be okay letting me suffer and possibly die from a heart attack or a stroke in the waiting room than helping me because I had my son with me.
Sometimes I asked myself, if I wasn’t a middle aged man walking with a child, would they have treated me with more empathetic way. I’m still a human, I’m a father and I love my son and my son loves me, isn't that enough reason not to treat me in such unempathetic way in that hospital.
I think the society should rethink its take on people, whether, the person is a man or a woman or any race or any age, whether we are with a child or not, we should all be treated the same and receive an unbiased care at the hospital.