Where is Dr. House When You Need Him?


You may not realize it’s been over a month since I’ve connected with you through this blog. Although that’s a fairly short span of time, it’s been a very long haul for me, medically speaking.

On Monday, September 23rd, I felt a slight discomfort in the area of my left collarbone. Since I have a high tolerance to pain, I didn’t think much of it. Within a few hours, my tolerance to pain met its match.

On Tuesday, I left the doctor’s office with a diagnosis of a probable pinched nerve. On Wednesday, Jay took me to our local ER where the doctor prescribed steroids and pain medicine. By Sunday morning, the pain was worse and I was running a fever.  Our son-in-law Brad (a general surgeon at Oconee Medical Center) met us at the ER where he ordered a cat scan and blood work.

Based on what he saw, Brad consulted with a thoracic surgeon at the Greenville Health System. As a result of their conversation, Jay drove me to the hospital in Greenville. That was 12:30 AM  on Monday, September 30th. I had no idea I would be there until Friday, October 11th.

hospital stickers

Those 11 days consisted of pockets of fluid in the chest, IVs, blood work, cat scan, intense antibiotics, MRI, surgery and two picc lines. The first caused a rash and had to be removed.

Thankfully, I’m now home and doing a little better each day. I’m still on pain pills and will need IV antibiotics for the next four to six weeks. The home health nurse is training Jay to administer the medicine. It’s a good thing it’s him and not me. I’m not a very good nurse.

Through all this, everyone agreed I had a serious infection. However, no one knew what it was or where it came from. Brad told me he had done some research. He explained it as a rare infection in the joint between the collarbone and breastbone that spread along the chest muscles to the armpit. This required surgery to drain the infection from multiple sites. He also told me there was an article in 2007 that stated there were only 27 known cases in people who were not IV drug users. In other words, in healthy people like me.

My question is where is Dr. House when you need him?  Of course, you know I ask that question in jest, don’t you? Who needs an imaginary TV doctor, even if he does solve all medical mysteries?

The reality is I’ve had everything I needed:

  • a loving God who has literally carried me through all this
  • amazing doctors and nurses from both hospitals. They are truly unsung heroes, every one.
  • a devoted husband who has sacrificed his time, energy and well-being to meet my needs
  • a loving family who has been by my side the whole time, either literally and/or through their  thoughts and prayers
  • kind friends who have prayed and brought meals to sustain us
  • and you, dear readers

You don’t know this, but I’ve thought of you often through this ordeal. And I thank you for sticking with me, even when you don’t hear from me or know what’s going on. I wanted to get the word to you sooner, but was unable to. I know you would have been praying for me. However, I still would appreciate your prayers for full recovery and no after-effects.

It’s taken me a couple of days to complete this post. But hopefully, I’ll soon be posting again on a consistent basis. Meanwhile, I so appreciate knowing we’re connected and that somehow God is using our relationship with one another to enhance our relationship with Him. Truly, He is a great God who is always there for us when we need Him.

No mystery in that diagnosis. Who needs Dr. House, right?

The Great Physician

28 Responses to “Where is Dr. House When You Need Him?”
  1. Nora says:

    I am so sorry that you have had to endure such a trial Liz. What a mystery! Please know that I will be praying for you dear friend and will ask my little prayer group to do the same. I am very grateful to Brad for leading the charge here on Earth and to Jesus for Healing you. May each new day be the unfolding of greater and lovier wellness. To God be the glory.

  2. Mary Beth Welsh says:

    Welcome back Mom! Love you and so glad you are home and feeling better even if it is a little every day. What an amazing God we serve and what a blesssing to know that we are, in deed, connected no matter the physical miles and that the power of prayer knows no boundaries.

  3. Edie Melson says:

    Liz, I had no idea! I’m so glad you’re doing better and so sorry you’ve been ill. I missed you at writers group Thursday, but assumed you were busy. I’ll be praying!

  4. harriett salley says:

    I know you are so happy to be at home in your own bed (know Jay is more than happy to give up his “chair bed”!) It would be medicine for me to sit and gaze out your back porch on the pasture and the cows! So peaceful!! While I know each day in the hospital, with no answers, was stressful, the best gift you gave to your family and friends was your calmness (sign of knowing who is in control!) I am amazed that you got back to yout blog so quickly! While I know it is therapy for you, you will never know how much is means to those who receive it, Take some time for your self, and “Dr. Jay” He may find a new profession! God Bless!

    Love, Harriett

    • Yes, Harriet, I am happy to be home. The worst is definitely over. Don’t know how regular I’ll be with the posting but hopefully, I’ll get back into the swing of things soon. Love you, Liz

  5. Barbara Plachta says:

    Thanks for taking the time to write your blog, even when your not feeling well. I am so glad that you are home and on the mend. Can’t wait to see you back to your old self real soon. You continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.
    Love, Barb

  6. Toni Williams says:

    Whew! Even though I knew you were getting better, this is a sure sign and bless you for putting forth the effort to write. Now MANY more will be praying for you. Loved the tee shirt and much love and hugs to both of you!!

  7. Joby Anthony says:

    Liz, I’m glad to know you are home and are doing better. I am praying for you and love you. Love, Thelma

    • Thanks Thelma, for checking in and for the beautiful card. Wish I had been able to go with Jeannie to see you in Highlands. I’ll look forward to seeing you next time you visit. Love you back, my friend. Liz

  8. shirlee fragel says:

    Thanks Liz, I wondered what happened. I thought I had lost you again. Praying for complete healing. So glad you got a great nurse Jay. Love.

  9. clairemuzal says:

    Gosh Liz – thanks for the good recap of a Really Tough situation. Are you up for a visit?

  10. Lollie Beck says:

    Well, Nurse Dad must be carrying out his duties well, you’re back to writing! I’m so glad you are feeling better! I enjoyed our time together this last weekend. Hope to see you again soon. Love, Lollie

  11. Christen says:

    Whew! What a journey! Praying for 100% recovery–
    Glad you are home and feeling better daily. Where would we be without our Lord and our family!
    Love you, Liz. And have missed your inspiring blog.
    You are one tough cookie!

  12. Sandra Aasen says:

    I’m glad you are home and feeling better.

    Sent from my iPhone


    • Hi Sandy,

      Thanks for checking in. I am feeling a little better each day so I guess the antibiotics are doing their job. I hope all is well with you and your family. Sure would love to catch up. Love you, Liz

  13. Harriet Segars says:

    Liz so sorry that you have had to go through all of this. Glad you are home and on the road to recovery. Love and prayers to you and all your family. Harriet

    • Hi Harriet,
      So good to hear from you. It has been a crazy time for sure. But I believe I’m well on my way to recovery and I look forward to some kind of normalcy again.

      I hope all is well with you and your family.
      Love to you and James, Liz

  14. Oh my goodness, Liz! I just figured you were traveling or otherwise occupied with family. I’m so sorry you’ve had such a time of it, but glad to see you were (and ARE) in good hands. I’m a Dr House fan too, but you’re right — our Great Physician beats Greg every single time 🙂

    Hugs to you and prayers for a complete recovery!

  15. Lisa says:

    Sooooo great to “hear” you back online, mama! It has been a long road but you have traveled it gracefully!! I’m so glad you’re on the mend and know you’ll be back to 100% before you know it. I love you!!!

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