My toddler sat in his big boy undies. “Daddy, I gotta go potty,” comes from the back seat of the car. Oh crap, I’m NOT mommy with her giant everything bag for accidents. I’m Hey-What-Could-Go-Wrong Daddy. Mommy isn’t here, this is a daddy trip. I started trying to assess the urgency of the situation by reasoning with my two-year-old. I ask the thing all parents ask, “Can you wait, Pal?” Um, what 2-year-old can wait for anything?
“Nooooooo, Daddy.” Click, click … up goes the urgency and I start trying to figure out how to avoid disaster. The Spider Man Underoos must remain clean. My mind started racing – no stores, no port-a-johns and no empty soda bottles rolling on the floor. Then it hit me, my little guy just said “potty” and I assumed we might face the thing little boys definition of fun – aim out the car door and see how far you can reach. What if “potty”meant most every daddy’s dread???
“What kind of potty buddy? Pee?,” I said not even introducing the hazmat possibility. “Stinky, daddy!” he said with a little wine and starting to wiggle. Defcon five we are here! The only option is a bush. It’ time for action! I find a place to pull over in between some houses where it’s a little wooded and get him out of his Fort Knox car seat with him wiggling like a herring. I tell him the plan as the shock grows on his face and then hear my least favorite words, “Daddy, Mommy wouldn’t …”
I give him a quick talk about us being bears and we all know where bears go. He squats and roars and says, “You too daddy?” So, I decided to pee for solidarity. The door to the closest house opens. I clean him up with leaves – “Mommy has wipies…” Ugh.
The new urgency is to get out of there while the home owner walks down the driveway. I give a quick wave looking innocent and we make a quick exit with me hoping he didn’t get my plate numbers.
The urgency has passed. My pal is humming in his seat when he sees my eyes in the rearview mirror. He says, “We’re bears, right daddy?”
I think, “Oh great, I wonder when this story will first be broadcast in an embarrassing setting?”
I’m sure you have your own examples of escalating urgency; paying the light bill, thesis presentation tomorrow, forgotten anniversary, etc.
Yesterday at Lahey Clinic the transplant atmosphere shifted to urgent. Before yesterday things were a little laid back with talk being that transplant might happen late summer, fall or even in 2013. Yesterday I was told to pack a bag and keep it in the car and be ready to get the call at any moment if a matching cadavar liver becomes available. If Josh gets the final official okay as a living donor, the schedule will be set.
They told me that every issue now needs to be treated at Lahey and not MMC. If I can’t breathe, we’re Burlington bound. Fever? Burlington. Having me there, my team told us, insures they can transplant if systems fail. If I am at MMC and that happens, they explained, I would not survive being transported.
We talked about when to use the Life Flight from MMC. Now we need to call MMC and find out how that works. If my softball-sized hernia from ascities fluids becomes painfull, hard, discolored it is time for a 911 helicopter ride.
They squeezed me in for the pre-op meeting with my anesthesia doc so that won’t slow me down at transplant. They got me in for a chest xray and squeezed me in to have a pulimary evaluation.
And they said, “if we have time” they want to tap my belly fluid, meet with the allergist who pricks my skin with little doses of medicine that could be used in transplant to see if any of them display a reaction. Lastly, they might do a chest CT to be sure my lung has no obstruction.
Urgency. Yesterday we, figuratively speaking, pulled the car over to take care of business. Urgency. If a liver becomes available through Josh or cadavar donor, I will have a new liver by summer.
If you’re the praying type, pray specifically for this list:
1) That I stay infection free. PLEASE don’t visit if you have any type of bug or have been around someone who does. Be bug-free for 10 days before you visit.
2) Pray that my hernia will not become an issue.
3) Pray that draining my fluid will be uneventful. Scheduled May 2 and Dr Tien said they might remove up to 10 liters.
4) Smooth surgery for Josh (if matched) and I and good recovery.
5) Hope and peace for my wife and family.
6) Funds. We’ve raised about $10K of the $50K minimum needed. The NTAF decided to change their name to HelpHopeLive and rather than keep the old web address active (cheap), they let go of it. That means EVERY link, poster, card and ticket that enourages online giving is wrong. Ugh! You can find it now at HELPHOPELIVE.org to make an online gift to help us.