Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Maggie Jochild in Hospital for Major Abdominal Surgery

Maggie and Mary Jo Atkins Barnett, December 1956, at the British Embassy Christmas Party in Kolkata, India. photo from Meta Watershed,

Donations Needed

Maggie called me two minutes after midnight this morning my time, 2:02 am in Austin, Texas. She was in more pain than I've ever heard her.

Said she'd not been able to eat, drink for two days and was calling 911.

By grace, University Hospital -- a great hospital for emergency care, it's true, however it's the Medical School hospital and thus where all indigents go -- was on diversion for emergencies. Maggie was sent elsewhere, to what I consider a fine, really first-rate hospital, one where someone without health insurance would not normally have a chance of getting inside (unless they were visiting.)

They're treating her wonderfully.

Maggie has a MASSIVE hernia which has managed to wrap itself around ALL her various abdominal organs. Not only does this cause lots (and lots and lots) of pain, but it has clamped off part of her bowel thus impeding digestion. And done other damage.

There is no choice but for a highly skilled surgeon to go in, remove the hernia, repair any damage to the bowel (and other organs), and move everything back into place (the hernia having pushed the organs all around, as well as having caused damage.) While they're in there, they plan on taking out the appendix to prevent being required to do so at some later date.

The date and time of the surgery has not yet been set. I think Friday morning would be a good day to operate but it's purely a guess. If they don't operate Friday, they may well wait till Monday rather than operate over the weekend. Or not. *shrugs* That isn't a shrug of who cares. It's a shrug of not being able to predict the surgical team.

This is a major, major procedure which will take a while and require serious planning by the surgical team. Lots of things could go wrong.

If things do go well Maggie will be in the hospital for probably a week or a bit more, post op. I don't know yet if she'll be able to go home after that or if she'll need to go to a step-down facility. You'll know shortly after I know.

What I do know right now is this... Maggie's income is split between donations from readers of Meta Watershed & Group News Blog, and her work as a Medical Transcriptionist. She's on short-term medical leave of absence from her job, that is, while she won't get paid at all, she'll have a job to come back to. But she's not earning anything and she has bills she MUST pay.

Any donations people can make, either one-off or recurring, would be greatly appreciated.

Commentators: If I don't answer your comments right away it isn't that I'm ignoring you; it's that there's only one of me and I have a day job plus taking care of Maggie, plus I'm not well myself and must conserve what energy I have for my own work, doctor's appointments, and taking care of my family (which includes taking care of Maggie.) I'll reply to y'all when I have time.

The single biggest need right now is for cash, money, dough, coin. Maggie will be out (again, I'm guessing) at least several weeks and maybe more, perhaps much more. She has rent to pay, electric bills, phone bills, all of the various bills which still must be paid even though she's in the hospital. Please donate generously.

Oh... her cat is doing fine, and has a generous supply of food and water.

I'll update you more by sometime Friday, or in any event if there's a major condition change or if she has surgery.

Thank you in advance for your donations to Maggie, and for your love, care and concern for her. Please give generously.

Thank you. (Keep breathing y'all. Keep breathing.)

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Cross-posted at Meta Watershed and Group News Blog.