August 1, 2007: Post-posting: The project went fantastic. The public loved what we did and potential investors may come on board now. The money issue is so huge. I seem to have none left even though I budgeted properly. I was so stressed out. For the 4th of July I went home for my last pump refill of the trip. Time’s flown by. I slept for 5 days in a row and didn’t want to go back for the project’s grand finale. That’s insane because I worked so hard for it.
So I headed back – feeling dreadful – & within 3 days I was in bed and unable to get out. It was so dramatic. We did our first of 2 big public presentations and it was amazing. The candidates looked wonderful and things went perfect (except for the stress of having to run the presentation off of a computer). I was losing my voice and in tremendous pain. I was getting worse by the millisecond. I tried to hold out but as we were wrapping up the gear at the end of the night I just realized I might not make it for tomorrow’s presentation. In fact, I knew I had to go to the emergency room right away. I was having a pancreatic attack and I was very weak.
One of my teammates was being an asshole & didn’t understand just how ill I was. No one would take me – I was their leader and falling apart right in front of them. I couldn’t hold it together any longer. I grabbed the keys and made a dramatic exit forcing one of our assistants to go with me. I cried and wailed in the car the whole way.
This first ER had no idea what a pump was. They refused to call my doctors. I even wear a medical bracelet and they didn’t care. They over-drugged me as a result and I thought this was the end. The ER doc argues about me having pancreatitis since it doesn’t show up in my blood. How absurd! It was going to kill me! Through my drug induced stupor I argued for him to call my doctors. I argued “why would they put a pain med pump in me if I didn’t have anything wrong with me?!?!?!” Eventually they asked me to leave because they needed the bed. The asst. took me to the hotel and I slept. 15 hours to the big finale. How could I go? I couldn’t talk above a whisper and I felt my lungs filling up. I started coughing hysterically and I was falling apart. The project seemed like a distant memory.
Two amazing assistants prepared for the presentation-which was a godsend. I was getting worse by the second. Jax & I could even talk about what to do because I couldn’t talk loud enough on the phone. No one could hear me. I felt so lost. I knew I couldn’t go to the night’s presentation. I wondered how I’d get back to LA in 2 days.
Eventually the night came and I forced all my will power to get up. My lungs felt like concrete. I wouldn’t be able to talk or stand up to announce anything. It was crushing after 3 years of work. I did say goodbye to the candidates at the very end. There were tears and I know they were worried about me.
I recall a second emergency room visit in here somewhere. I’m paying the bills on it anyhow. My health insurance is so crap!
After sleeping for 2 days one of the assistants stayed in town to help me get on a plane. He didn’t mention he was also sick with the flu. It was quite a dire situation. The team had packed my luggage so all I needed to do was get on the plane. Not a huge task…but…
Murphy’s Law: The assistant who made my ticket had made an error. Jax realized I needed to be at the airport at 6am. (3 hours from that moment). The asst was so ill and unpacked and it was a true struggle. I had so much luggage. UGH! We got to the airport so I called Jax to tell him I was safe but suddenly I began projectile vomiting. I dropped the phone, left my stuff, vomited some more… it was truly nasty. I ran to a bathroom (the men’s) and vomited the whole way. It became bile and flew out of me. I grasped a toilet and tried to say “help, emergency” over and over. It was barely audible. I felt pancreatitis rearing its ugly head, but worse, there was something else wrong.
An ambulance came roaring in for my third emergency room visit. I was out of it & on the floor vomiting and couldn’t breathe. They pulled me onto the stretcher. I knew they wouldn’t let me die but I felt like it was official. I felt dead. I felt worse than dead.
The next thing I really remember was being back in LA in bed. I could recall being at the hospital for a moment arguing about what a pump is and what it does. I remember saying I couldn’t breathe, being drugged up again, and in someone’s SUV (turns out it was a locally-based colleague). I recall being on the plane and worrying the stewards. Then I was in bed. Finally I was back with Jax and not going anywhere.
I had pneumonia. My doctor called in antibiotics. Thank god I was home!!!