My husband Loy and I were invited to a small gathering at a place at The Fort. Everything was going well. We were having a lot of fun.
Finally it was time to go. We all got up at the same time. I went over to talk to the hostess, who was telling me about a friend of hers, when there was a commotion.
Loy had collapsed. I rushed over. He had fallen on his back. His head was in a corner between a glass wall and aluminum sidings. Two of the younger men lifted him onto a chair. I knelt down in front of him saying, “Loy, Loy, look at me.” He sort of lifted his head but I could see his eyes were not focused. “Loy, please talk to me,” I said. He just grunted.
The group acted quickly. Immediately, a St. Luke’s Global ambulance arrived. They loaded Loy onto the bed and put him in the ambulance. I followed in the car. I know that I did not look panicked, even if I genuinely was. Oh God, oh God, oh God. That was going through my head.
When we arrived at the hospital, which was very near, the ambulance doors opened. Loy sat up and said to me, “Let’s go home. I want to go home.”
He looked totally normal. Of course, we could not go home. He had to be checked on. Soon, Mike, one of the guys who helped sit him down, called to ask how he was. I said, “He seems normal.”
“I was so afraid he had broken his neck,” Mike said.
That sent me into a spin. If he had broken his neck, he wouldn’t be alive. But he was and he was talking to me like nothing happened. He did not even remember falling. I felt taut with anxiety though I couldn’t show it.
From midnight to morning they gave him tests. X-rays. A swabbing to see if he had COVID-19. A three-hour test for his brain. An MRI. Plus other tests I cannot remember.
I knelt down in front of him saying, ‘Loy, Loy, look at me.’ He sort of lifted his head but I could see his eyes were not focused. ‘Loy, please talk to me,’ I said. He just grunted.
It was the next day but neither of us had slept. It was also Thursday, my deadline day. I knew I would not make it because of my anxiety and total lack of sleep. My editors excused me. That’s why I had no column the following Sunday.
When I went to book a room at around 2 a.m., the girl told me they had one for us that would cost P4,000 a day. I agreed, not even thinking. It turned out to be one among the presidential suite rooms: nice, big with a huge comfortable chair and a sofa that you could sleep on.
We got in there almost morning. It was so cold. They turned off the air conditioner but it was still so cold. I thought: Maybe someone died in this room and is still haunting. They brought me two blankets and a pillow. I sank into the sofa, which I found too soft and uncomfortable for me. Neither of us could sleep.
My husband asked me to get into bed with him to share my body warmth because he was so cold. We tried to sleep that way maybe for 20 minutes and then the bed made a strange sound. Alarmed, I got up. “I think we’re too heavy for the bed,” I said. “We don’t want it to collapse. Then we will have to pay for it.”
Was anything wrong with my husband? We don’t know. One of his daughters told me, ‘We come from a fainting family. I also faint when I’m hungry or I feel hot.‘
Late in the day we got the results of the COVID test. Loy passed it. At dusk the neurologist finally came. Loy passed the usual tests again. He emphatically told the doctor, “I want to go home tomorrow morning.”
Nurses came in recommending another test. Loy refused. He said adamantly, “I want to go home tomorrow morning.” That night I asked for a headache pill and finally I got some sleep.
One thing wonderful about St. Luke’s Global is the checkout. They have four counters you can go to. You don’t have to wait. When the bill is slipped to you under the glass, it absolutely takes your breath away. Aaaarghhh! So expensive!
Was anything wrong with my husband? We don’t know. He doesn’t know why he fell, except he had a small lump at the back of his head. One of his daughters told me, “We come from a fainting family. I also faint when I’m hungry or I feel hot.”
Do we want to know what’s wrong with him? No. “I’m just old,” he says with a smile. I don’t want to know either. I don’t really believe in doctors’ diagnoses anymore, especially in their recommendations for treatments that cost so much. It’s enough that we’re both happy with the time allotted to us. We have just chosen the natural way to go. When God calls you, then it’s time to go.
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