Monday 1700 – I was getting ready to go fly that night and my back started to spasm on me. I got my stuff together and hobbled over to the squadron. The longer I stood or even moved the more it hurt. I knew it was going to be a long night. Walking or sitting was quite excruciating
Tuesday 0200 – I made it to my room and dropped my bag on the floor. I took 800mg of ibuprofen and some tylenol. I hoped that when I woke in the morning things would be better.
Tuesday 0800 – I crawled out of bed – literally, on my hands and knees in an effort to go to the bathroom. Leaving my phone beside my bed on the charger would prove to be a critical mistake. I made it to the bathroom after 5 minutes and attempted to stand. My back gave out – completely out. I couldn’t move at all. Any movement led to excruciating pain. I could hardly breathe due to the pain.
Tuesday 0820 – I finally moved three feet from the spot on the floor to the desk where my computer was located. With great effort I grabbed it and placed a phone call over the internet to my wife. She didn’t answer. I tried her desk. She didn’t answer. I surely didn’t want to be stuck on the floor all day long. I tried one of her friends at work who directed me to the lab where she was located. I let her know what was happening – she was concerned. I had her start calling everyone at home because I couldn’t get close to any phone numbers for anyone local. It was on the other side of the room and it might as well have been on Saturn.
Tuesday 0850 – After a few calls back and forth she finally reaches the Director of Operations in my home squadron. One of the schedulers knew someone else here at school and contacted him. He found housekeeping and got into my room and called 911.
Tuesday 0910 – I was fairly coherent for the amount of pain I was dealing with. Firefighters/medics showed up and started to get my vitals. I almost forgot the name of the current President. They had to roll me on my side to get me on a backboard – there was no way in hell I was going to walk out of that door.
Tuesday 0930 – The county EMT’s showed up and took over from the base Fire Dept. They finally lifted me up on the backboard and got me on a gurney. We got to the ambulance and they got my vitals again. My blood pressure was a “little” bit higher than normal.
Tuesday 1000 – After a five minute drive to the ER they got my through the doors and onto a bed. Now they had to get me off the backboard. I was completely unable to fight the muscles that were causing spasms throughout my body. They gave me a shot….
Tuesday 1030 – The local First Sergeant shows and we start talking – I can still barely move
Tuesday 1100 – They give me another shot – I can still barely move
Tuesday 1200 – I have finally willed my body up but I can’t bend enough to get off the gurney and into a wheelchair. The doc at the ER is quite perplexed because what they gave me should have worked
Tuesday 1230 – I am given some pain meds and we make our way to the flight doc on base. The shirt, seeing that I was having a pretty crappy day, bought my lunch. It was greatly appreciated.
Tuesday 1300 – I struggle to get out of the car and into another wheelchair – my body does NOT want to relax.
Tuesday 1400 – I finally make it to my room and take all of the meds they have given me. I’m unsure as to how I’m going to get to the bathroom later or do… well, pretty much anything.
Thank god for technology – I don’t know how long I would have laid there on the floor without a way to get in contact with somebody… anybody. There are so many people to thank… I had fallen and I simply could not get up. I’m on the mend and able to walk about a quarter mile at a time but it’s going to be a few more days of recurring pain. Hopefully I can get health, return to flight status, fly two more times, and then depart from here. I can only hope.