Monday, December 29, 2008

Wow...look at all the Water Under the Bridge!

It's been nearly two months since my last update and so much has happened since then that I am not even sure where to begin??? Most of what has been going on has been great, but at the same time gobbled up virtually every last minute of my free time. I can say without hesitation that the last 2 months have been very rewarding and yet at times had also been an extremely sad and stressful time for my family. In late August Tanyia'a sister died unexpectedly. She was her only sister and needless to say they were very close. The circumstances surrounding her death are still cloudy at best and we have all but given up hope on finding the answers we need. Over the years I have lost people I was close to before and it doesn't bother me as much as it does others. I know that sounds cold, but I have always been able to compartmentalize things that were emotionally charged. But to watch my wife hurting, knowing there was nothing I could do to fix it, was maddening and it ripped me apart to see here in such despair and be unable to make things right. I am a fixer....if there is a problem I want to solve it, but there was nothing I go do to relieve her sadness and grief, but listen and be there. So I was.

At the same time work had been very busy and stressful. So in late November we decided to get away and decided a family trip to Cuba was just what we needed.

We went to a very beautiful part of the Country call Holguin. The place we stayed was perfect, huge resort with great food, a big pool and of course, a stunning beach. On our third day, after spending most of the morning by the pool we decided to enjoy the beach for the afternoon. It was a stunning white sand beach and with the green Ocean as a backdrop it looked like a post card. The boys and I played in the surf, while Tanyia and Lauren lounged on the sand.

It was then that Ethan was toppled by a big wave and while lunging to grab him smashed my foot into large rock on the ocean floor. I was instantly overwhelmed by pain, but managed to grab the boys and limp back to the beach. The pain continued to get worse and worse as I made my way towards a lounger and it was then that I noticed the trail of blood that was left in the white sand in my wake. I was convinced I had severely fractured my foot and with the pain still growing worse by the moment, I told Tanyia I was going back to the suite to get some ice and lie down.

This is where my recollection gets a bit foggy. On my way back to the room the pain became so severe that I could hardly walk. I was only moving about 6 inches with each limp and I could feel me libs going numb. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was going into shock. As I turned the corner and could see our bungalow only 50 feet away, my breathing was shallow and rapid and my sandal was now soaked with blood. It's funny the things you think at a time like that. I remember saying out loud, "just make it to the room and everything will be fine". I really believed it! It was like a race and I had convinced myself that if I could reach the finish line the pain would stop. Of course that didn't happen and as I lay on my bed, now alone and with pain so severe it felt like being burned from the inside out I realized I was in trouble.

I lay they screaming and moaning for about 10 minutes, praying that Tanyia would return. "Please come back" I cried out over and over. With my limbs growing colder and my lips turning blue, even in the state I was in I knew I was on the brink of passing out from shock. So I picked up the phone and dialed reception, and after several failed attempts in English I used Dora the Explorer based Spanish and said " Por favor Emergencia doctor que muere". Which means "Please Doctor Emergency Dying".

Just as the medical team arrived Tanyia and the kids returned from the beach. Fortunately, our suite was large enough that the kids had their own rooms, so Tanyia quickly ushered them into the other room and they didn't see all the blood and my foot now three times it's size. The doctor took one look at my foot and knew what it was "Scorpion Fish" he said and the nurse looked at me with a look for horror. Not exactly giving me much reassurance that things were going to be OK. I would find out later that the Scorpion fish is the 2nd most painful venom in the world and being stung by one is a one in a million chance. Yeah right! If it had gone untreated for more then an hour I would have lost my foot. I was about the 45 minute mark when they arrived. Crazy!

The next 12 hours I was pumped full of IV narcotics and it's all a bit of a blur. Within 24 hours I was able to walk, albeit with a bad limp. But the swelling didn't go down for 3 weeks. It was then that I had an x-ray and discovered that I had also fractured my foot.

That was a month and a half ago and I have been unable to run, bike, swim or anything since then. It's been frustrating and a big reason why I haven't been posting. I am not me when I don't exercise. I lose motivation and get well...depressed! My foot is now virtually healed and I will resume my workouts next week.

I have to go, but I will update again soon. Happy New Year!


Mungo Says Bah! said...

Wow, that was painful sounding... sorry about the sting. Also very sorry to hear about the loss of your wife's sister. You've both had a tough year.

Interesting PDF article on Scorpionfish stings is here...

Take care, both of you,


Chris said...

Wow... umm, hard to know what to say. Ending with "Happy New Year!" has a ring of promise and hope to it that I wish doubly upon you and your family. Best wishes for the remainder of 2008 and for 2009 and beyond.

Jim said...


Thanks buddy! Things getting better all the time and we still consider ourselves very blessed. Thanks for your kind words my friend.


Thank you! It has been a year filled with some sad times, but mostly great things, so I can hardly complain. Lots of great things on the horizon for me, my family and the blog. I look forward to sharing it with everyone here.

Thanks for reading!