I was barefoot and undocumented 

As I was carried into the van, I closed my eyes to keep the world from spinning. 

The violent vomiting had stopped after they gave me a needle, but I still couldn’t keep my eyes open.

I had only the shirt and shorts I was wearing; no money, no purse, no insurance card, no shoes, as I was put in the van for the long ride to the hospital. It took two people to wheel me out of my house. I couldn’t walk.  

It had come out of nowhere. I had been getting ready for bed when I suddenly felt dizzy. I told my husband I was going to lie down. Then the room started spinning like I was drunk. I started vomiting. It felt like gallons. I tried to aim for the   waste basket but I got the bedroom rug and blanket. 

I yelled for my husband to call 911. By the time they arrived, I was soaked.  Two of the women helped  me to change my shirt. Then the other EMT gave me an anti-nausea shot.  

When we arrived at the hospital, I was quickly wheeled to the Emergency Department where a team of Healthcare workers swarmed me. Within minutes I was wearing a wrist band identification, a blood pressure cuff, and an IV port. Blood was drawn from my arm, and a band aid applied. 

After a few hours, I felt better. I was given an EKG, which seemed to show ST Depression.  I was told to follow up with my cardiologist the next day.  Because the dizziness had stopped, I was released from the hospital and walked out wearing hospital booties.  

I went to sleep, thinking all was okay, I was just dehydrated. 

I awoke the next morning to find the room spinning again.  I held into the walls as I walked down the hall to get to my phone, which had been charging overnight. I wasn’t sure who to call or what to say, when the doorbell rang.  Like an angel with perfect timing, my neighbor, who is also an RN, was at the door. 

He had seem the ambulance lights the night before and wanted to know if I was ok.  Um, no. Everything is spinning again.  He called my husband, my cardiologist, and his wife so she could come sit with me until hubby arrived. 

Hubby drove to the doctor’s building and pushed me in the wheelchair to the cardiologist, who repeated the EKG, and found the results to be perfect. No heart problem, but just to be sure, scheduled an Echocardiogram for two hours later.  We stayed in the waiting room for an eternity. My doctor suspected Vertigo, and told me to follow up with my primary care doctor.  The Echocardiogram was performed, and my husband wheeled me to the car.  

As hubby pulled the car out of the parking lot and into the road, I began vomiting again.  It was mostly water, as I had not eaten anything since the night before, but whatever the problem was, it wasn’t cured.   

We were right in front of another hospital, and it seemed the logical answer to go there. Again, my husband put me into a wheelchair and brought me in to register. He then drove home to feed Bailey.


“Excuse me, why am I not center of attention today?”

I begged Hubby to take a nap; he had only slept three hours the night before. But no, he ironed clothes, ran errands, bought “soft foods” like white bread and ice cream. 

I was finally wheeled to a hospital bed in the Emergency Department. Mine was the middle bed, with fabric curtains between us. I couldn’t see anything but sadly could hear everything. 

This time, no team swarmed me, but I received a frown from Nurse Ratched, who ran this room. I listened to her bad-mouth the overseeing doctor, so I had to assume he was good if she didn’t like him. 

Finally a Physician Assistant arrived. I told her I would give her $20 for an IV. It had been a few hours, and I was sure dehydration was not helping anything.  (Remember the Seinfeld episode at the Chinese restaurant when Elaine decided to drop some money on the host’s book to get a table? That’s what it felt like.)

The PA asked a million questions. She ordered a CAT scan with dye and left the room. 

Finally I got my IV.  An hour later I was given anti-vertigo medication. It did help stop the spinning. Mostly.  

As I sat in bed waiting for the doctor to stop by, another doctor came to speak to the man to the left of me.  He was there for rectal  bleeding, and all that was between me and his rectal exam was a thin layer of fabric.  (Remember Kramer going with no underwear?) I can’t unhear that. 

I confess I may have mixed up the series of events.  I was taken to have the CAT scan, and they gave me dye that made me feel like I had to pee, but thankfully I had no accident.  

Later the doctor stoppped by to tell me the CAT scan was fine, and I was going to be discharged. I called hubby to come get me. I signed a few forms; I have no idea what I signed. 

I was told to wait in the bed and that my husband would be shown where I was.  Meanwhile I was “discharged” in the computer. So when he came to get me, he was told I was discharged and that I was probably outside waiting for him. Not bloody likely.  I was still dizzy, it was midnight, and exactly which door would I select to stand next to? 

He texted me, I walked out through the ED, the same way I came in, and voila! We found each other. So a happy ending for that night.    

I will be following up with doctors this week. I can tell you this: Vertigo sucks! 

—If you haven’t yet bought my e-book, why not take a look?  Only $2.99


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10 thoughts on “I was barefoot and undocumented 

    1. One form of vertigo is caused by “crystals” in the ear that get into the wrong place in the inner ear canal, telling the brain that there is movement when there is not. Once they diagnose which kind of vertigo it is, there are movements that can be done to push the crystals out of the inner ear canal. My mothers friend suffers from a form of vertigo she got while on an airplane caused by too much pressure in her ears. I honestly don’t know if it can go away like a virus or if the crystals can bd dissolved.

  1. I had vertigo, not to the extent that you did, but I was also told it was crystals in the ear. For a long time,I couldn’t look up without holding on to something. I learned to sit up very slowly and stay seated on the side of my bed until I felt clear-headed. It did go away after about a year. I sure hope your doctor can figure it out very soon.

  2. No, I never took medicine. It would mostly be when I got up too quickly or if I put my neck back to look up. I learned to hold on to things too. Most of the time, I could handle it.

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