My daughter is in the ER right now

8:29 PM: She sounds like she’s going into shock, and it’s crowded so no one is seeing her. If you have prayers, any religion, please pray them now.


7:22 AM, NOV. 27: Here’s where we are this morning. It took until 11 PM for the hospital to see her. Something is wrong–some sort of post-surgical complication–but they don’t know what. At 4 AM they gave her morphine and sent her home for a few hours of sleep, but she’s to be back in there this morning. The good news I’ve had is that her temperature, which had dropped from normal to 96.5 over the course of about an hour right before she called me at 8:10 PM, stabilized, and her blood pressure is within normal limits (info that I didn’t have until 11 PM).

The one possibility that my daughter could tell me they’d mentioned was an abcess–she’s not medical-tech oriented, and she was in bad pain, and her stress level was high. People in those situations don’t catch medical terminology and jargon thrown at them at high speed, so there are other possibilities, but she doesn’t know what they are.

At this point, I’m waiting for a call from her to let me know what’s going on.

Thank you for prayers, good thoughts, candles, anything you’ve got. I’m deeply grateful.


1:00 PM, NOV. 27: Not answering her cell phone, not answering her messages. Still waiting to hear something.


1:58 PM, NOV, 27: Finally heard from her. She’s been readmitted. Abdominal pain, vomiting, chills. They don’t know what’s wrong. They’re going to run tests.

Thank you so much for your prayers and encouragement. I don’t do religion, but I know prayer and focused thought work, and I’m grateful for every one of you holding her in your thoughts.


5:55 PM, NOV 27: She’s having “something radioactive with injected dye” done in radiology. Tony–her guy–didn’t get the specific name of the procedure, and I’m not up to guessing. This hospital she’s in seems so far to be pretty short on patient teaching and pretty long on nurses eating hamburgers at the nurses’ station. No idea when she’ll be out (but this, sadly, is Standard Operating Procedure—tests take forever). Still no clue what’s wrong, but maybe after they have have her back from this.

I’m trying not to remember all the things I’ve seen go wrong with radioactive dye and patients.


9:05 PM, NOV 27:Still waiting to hear anything.


8:00 PM, NOV 28:Things are kind of up in the air. They’ve found the problem, after a bunch of really nasty tests; the surgeon didn’t get everything closed off the first time in, and her liver is leaking bile into her abdominal cavity. She’s going to wait a couple of days in the hospital to see if the leak closes off on its own. If it doesn’t, there’s an esophageal treatment that might fix it, and if that doesn’t work, more surgery. She’s had nothing but ice chips since she entered the ER, and will probably have nothing but ice chips until Friday.

But she hurts less, and there are a whole lot of worse things this could have been. Her very best outcome is that this problem will resolve itself between now and Friday, without any further need for anesthesia or invasive procedures or surgery.

I told her you folks were keeping her in your thoughts and praying for her, and she told me to thank you. Huge thanks from me, too, that you have made time in your lives for my kid. We’re both so grateful.

Another update when I know more.


11:44 AM, NOV 29: Just talked to her. She’s feeling much better, though very weak. She’s having much less pain, and she managed to sleep pretty well through the night. There’s a chance she’ll be able to have something besides ice chips today, and if she does all right with it, she could go home tomorrow.

Thank you so much for keeping her in your thoughts and prayers.


12:32 PM, NOV 29: Her doctor was just in, and she gets to go ahead with the food trial, to see how she does. If she doesn’t start leaking bile again, she’ll be out of there soon.


9:58 AM, NOV 30 She did well all through the night, kept the food down, didn’t go back to the horrible pain, and she gets to go home today.

Thank you so much for hanging with me through this, and for keeping her in your thoughts and prayers. This is the absolute best outcome we could have wanted, and it happened. It was wonderful to know that she was never alone, that there were, throughout the day, other people who cared about her and what happened to her. Thank you so much, from both of us.

image_pdfDownload as PDFimage_printPrint Page

About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and indie-publish my new ones.

58 comments… add one
  • TimK Nov 29, 2007 @ 21:41

    OMG. I’ve been so busy with work this week, I’ve been behind on reading blogs… And this happens. I’m so sorry I just heard about this now. Please keep us up to date, Holly. Your daughter is in my prayers.


  • MarFisk Nov 29, 2007 @ 18:30

    Thanks God she’s doing better, Holly. May her progression continue in this directions. HUGS for the stress of it all to all of you.

  • shawna Nov 29, 2007 @ 18:12

    I’m so glad she’s doing better! (((hugs)))

  • Annalisa Nov 29, 2007 @ 17:26

    The best of my good wishes are with your daughter and you right now. I hope your daughter does well with the food and recovery. I’ve been knocking on wood for her every chance I think of it, while saying my non-denominational version of a prayer.

  • Lexy Nov 29, 2007 @ 15:30

    I am so glad that things are starting to look up, Holly. I will still keep sending healing vibes until you tell us all is well.

    I hope all goes well for your daughter with the food trial.

  • Noucamp Nov 29, 2007 @ 14:44

    Hope things go on improving Holly! We’ll keep you in our thoughts, always.

    Best wishes from United Kingdom. Mark.

  • shelbi Nov 29, 2007 @ 14:26

    I’m so glad things are getting better. I’m still praying for your entire family.

  • Chassit Nov 29, 2007 @ 13:54

    I’m very glad that things are starting to look better. I hope things continue to improve. I’ll continue to keep all of you in my thoughts.

  • Keely Nov 29, 2007 @ 13:13

    I have been carefully following this post since you started it, checking back several times each day and even getting up at 2 AM the first day to see whether there were any new updates. You KNOW my thoughts are always with you and yours, but they are especially focused on “the film school kid”, right now!

    Send her my hugs!


  • hollylisle Nov 29, 2007 @ 12:47

    Thank you, all of you, for prayers and good thoughts and support through this. Thank you also for the offer of a fund to get me down there. I am so moved by your generosity and kindness, but I won’t have to have a fund.

    If surgery does prove necessary, my husband has already said he’ll say “The hell with the store” and we’ll drive down. He’s the manager, so doing this would be a big deal, which is why we haven’t done it yet. Once there, we can sleep at his folks’ house, so if she doesn’t do well with food, we’ll start making plans. We were making arrangements to drive down when things went south so badly on the 26th, but cancelled them when we found out her vital signs were stable.

  • Tech Nov 29, 2007 @ 11:59

    Glad to hear the good update. She, you, and your family will remain in my prayers.

    (And if a fund to fly you to your daughter gets started, I want to donate.)

  • anderyn Nov 29, 2007 @ 9:03

    I’ll be praying that she manages to heal on her own, and that more surgery is not necessary. (Will also be asking some church friends to add her/you to the prayer list.) I’m glad that they know what it is!

  • Jess Nov 29, 2007 @ 8:52

    I’m glad they found the problem and it’s not “worse”. I admire your not strangling the surgeon immediately. Still praying.

  • JeriT Nov 29, 2007 @ 4:09

    I’m glad they isolated the cause. Still keeping you and your daughter in my thoughts – and rooting for her not to need new invasive surgery.

  • Virsu Nov 29, 2007 @ 2:27

    It’s relief to know what it is that causes the problems and that doctors are working on it. Still thinking of you two and sending positive thoughts. Will do so as long as it’s needed. Strength to you both.

  • Chassit Nov 28, 2007 @ 22:57

    Still praying for you, Holly. Hang in there. Hugs your way.

  • TJ Nov 28, 2007 @ 20:46

    One of those blunt questions I tend to pose and all.

    Holly, how much would it cost to get you to your daughter?

    Still thinking of you and her.

  • shelbi Nov 28, 2007 @ 15:11

    Still praying, Holly. Hang in there.

  • BJSteeves Nov 28, 2007 @ 13:01

    Still praying for you and your family. I hope they find the problem very soon.

  • Krista Nov 28, 2007 @ 10:59

    Think of you both. The prayer has been sent. ~hugs~

  • Jason Penney Nov 28, 2007 @ 6:43

    Holly, so sorry to hear. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your daughter.

  • Noucamp Nov 28, 2007 @ 4:35

    Very sorry to hear what your going through Holly. I myself had a Psoas abscess earlier this year, it was scarey at the time. Abscess plays havoc with your temperature.

    My thoughts are with you both. Mark.

  • Brenria Nov 28, 2007 @ 2:52

    I’m not religious, but I’m sending positive vibes to you and your daughter.

  • Tech Nov 27, 2007 @ 23:35

    She is in my prayers. As are you and your family.

  • dhyoung Nov 27, 2007 @ 22:44

    God, Holly, this is awful. I had some ugly “surprises” with close relatives last summer–actually the whole thing started the previous September–and I hate thinking of what you and your family are going through. Good luck, and I wish I could help. My wife and I, both writers whom you’ve helped immensely, are wishing you and your daughter well.

  • cherylp Nov 27, 2007 @ 22:13

    A couple of years ago, I had emergency gall bladder surgery. I can remember that stupid gas they use to inflate your stomach during surgery caused me to have post-surgical abdominal pain and nausea. I’m praying that’s all this is and your daughter will be okay.

  • Eve Nov 27, 2007 @ 20:53

    My thoughts are with you and your daughter. I’m sending you all the positive focus I can.

  • tambo Nov 27, 2007 @ 19:07

    If we had a second vehicle, I’d drive down and get you, if nothing else so that you could Be There. Not knowing is the worst, but it’ll be okay. Hang in there. {{hugg}}

  • anderyn Nov 27, 2007 @ 16:16

    Oh lord, no, every Mom’s nightmare. My prayers go out to you and her. I’ll be checking this blog and hoping to see good news on the diagnosis and fixing-it fronts soon.

    Many hugs from Michigan.

  • Bridget Nov 27, 2007 @ 15:56

    Praying here too, as fervently as I can. (((hugs)))

  • Lexy Nov 27, 2007 @ 14:38

    Thoughts and healing vibes coming your’s and your daughter’s way. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you both.

  • Jess Nov 27, 2007 @ 14:17

    Ohh, Holly.


  • joelysue Nov 27, 2007 @ 9:57

    Praying for your entire family now as I type.

  • lizb Nov 27, 2007 @ 9:45

    Thinking of you and your daughter.

  • Virsu Nov 27, 2007 @ 8:58

    No religion, but my thoughts are with you and your daughter. Hopefully everything goes well.

  • ejoy Nov 27, 2007 @ 7:52

    Shooting arrow prayers for your family and her doctors. It must have been a horribly long night for all of you. Hang in there.

  • TinaK Nov 27, 2007 @ 7:41

    Hugs and prayers to you and your daughter and her family Holly. It’s so tough to be away from your kids when they are hurting.

  • JeriT Nov 27, 2007 @ 5:55

    No religion, but you and your daughter are in my thoughts. May she come home whole and well.

  • TJ Nov 27, 2007 @ 5:42

    Thinking of you and your daughter.

  • tambo Nov 27, 2007 @ 5:09

    Whatever you need. I’m around if you need to talk. {{hugg}}

  • Chassit Nov 27, 2007 @ 1:34

    Prayers headed your way. Hang in there.

  • Inkblot Nov 27, 2007 @ 1:12

    Prayers going up. Hang in there. *hugs*

  • Rick Nov 26, 2007 @ 23:40

    What happened?!!

    Prayers, good thoughts, well-wishes, and a work order to the big guy upstairs all sent your way.

  • BJSteeves Nov 26, 2007 @ 23:10

    Oh My!!! I will be praying for you and your family. Hugs to all of you.

  • CT Nov 26, 2007 @ 22:53

    Oh man. Many prayers, crossed fingers…I hope everything turns out okay.

  • shawna Nov 26, 2007 @ 22:22

    Adding my prayers and hugs…

  • MarFisk Nov 26, 2007 @ 21:52

    Oh Holly. My thoughts are with her. May she come home soon, well and healthy.

  • MattScudder Nov 26, 2007 @ 21:44

    Hope everything works out. Hang in there.

  • PolarBear Nov 26, 2007 @ 21:17

    On their way. Hugs to you.

  • Ann Nov 26, 2007 @ 20:31

    Prayers, well wishes, crossed fingers and toes are all focused on you and yours tonight. I hope she gets taken care of.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.