Tuesday, August 17, 2010


I sit here, in the emergency room going in the fifth hour of our wait, still not back in an examination room, waiting for my daughter to be seen. It's our thirty-sixth wedding anniversary. Emergency rooms are not new to us, but it's been over a year since we have been here for her devastating migraine pain. This is not a migraine, though. She has worked hard and got those mainly under control, with the help of the incredible neurologist who works at this hospital. This time she is here because of intensifying abdominal pain and nausea. She has already been to her internist, who told her to come to the emergency room. Hopefully, we will learn the source of this problem sooner rather than later and she can move forward on her plans, and begin to accomplish those dreams. She and here boyfriend want to marry and move to Florida. She wants to become a psychiatric nurse, or an ER nurse, I am sure not in small part because of her frequent visits these past two years to the emergency room. Or she may become a therapist using dogs and other pets for therapy. She loves her dogs. She has two degrees, one in political science and one in psychology, but ever since she was plagued by the constant debilitating migraine pain, her life has been on hold. When I was her age, I had completed my bachelor's degree, had been married four years, and was pregnant with our son. Her life is on hold, for now. I hope just for now. She has so many dreams and it hurts me to watch the pain stop her.

I know my daughter has headache pain almost constantly. I am amazed at how she has found the courage to move on, in the face of the pain. I can tell when she has a headache just by looking in her eyes. I no longer ask, though, because she doesn't want to talk about it, that just makes her think about it. She moves through the pain and plans for the future. In many ways, she is my hero. I have never told her this. Maybe I will tell her tonight.

Life is not always fair. I feel good being at this hospital because they have helped my daughter so much and a former client of mine, a truly wonderful woman, is the triage nurse here. Seeing this nurse calms me.

This hospital reminds me of another client. He is probably the bravest man I have ever met. He comes to this hospital for treatment. He has a terminal brain tumor. His equally brave
wife is also a patient of this hospital. Once the matter I represented her husband regarding was resolved and they planned to lead the best life possible, she was diagnosed with a rare and serious form of cancer. She has been treated here, but her treatment has not been so successful. The last time I saw the two of them, they were holding hands as they walked toward me. They have been blessed with a wonderful marriage and the kind of love about which movies are made. I pray that they have many years left together. I know they are making the best of what they have.

We are finally back in an examination room. I pray my daughter gets some relief. This was not the way my husband and I envisioned spending our 36th wedding anniversary. At least we are here together, with our daughter.


  1. Im sorry for you and your daughter's pain. There is nothing worse than to take ones child to emergency room. Our prayers are with you.


  2. Lynne: As a migrane sufferer I can in small measure under stand the pain your daughter has endured. I think of you often and hope you are well.