Monday, July 27, 2009

A rough weekend

Really, there's no other way to describe this weekend. Horrible. Awful. Tragedy-filled. One of our friends that Davin has know since he was 9 and I have known since I was around 13, was killed in a motorcycle accident in Virginia Beach. Mat Mason, only 24 years of age, flipped into oncoming traffic after he lost control of his motorcycle on Shore Drive.

Davin & Mat had been very close friends growing up probably because of their location and their love for the outdoors & speed. They lived only about a quarter of a mile apart (which is not much space on the eastern shore) and was a quick ride on a dirtbike or a 4-wheeler which was their typical mode of transportation until they both got their Chevy trucks when they got their licenses in the summer after the 10th grade.

Mat & I met at Onley Baptist in the church youth group. Andrea started taking me to youth. I don't remember why she wanted to go to this church, but whatever it was, we both ended up sticking. Mat was the goofiest person I'd ever met and he just had me laughing every time we got together. He told cheezy jokes (those are my favorite), and in every picture, he'd give us bunny ears. It's like bunny ears never got old for him. They were funny in 1st grade and equally funny 11th grade.

Weekend night life on the shore consisted of a few illegal activities. Most of which we have on video. Street racing down one of the straighter backroads, with the whole crowd of people at the quarter mile marker. Mat was always challenging someone in his little Chevy S-10. He always had a great excuse for why he'd lost each race. Even Justin McKinney's Jeep could outrun Mat's truck. Davin would smoke him every single time in his Chevy C-10. No matter what, we always had a good time.

Together, we were always eating. Wendy's or Chinese food. Back then, Mat was a little heavier. It didn't matter to us, we just all had love for one another... the kind of love that you don't notice petty things. Just being together was a whole lot better than being alone, and together we were. Davin had 2 twin beds in his bedroom. So many times I remember waking up and Mat being in the bed next to us. "Do you ever go home? I mean, it's just across the street!" we would joke.

And then there was the time that Trey was hanging out with Mat. I think my mom was confident that Mat would be a good influence on Trey. Mat had a big container of what looked like cherry red gumballs. Trey asked them if he could have one, so Mat gave it to him and Trey ate it. It was a paintball. Every time I think about it, I have to smile, even laugh. When I asked Mat why he'd let him eat a paintball, he said, "Well I didn't know he was really going to eat it!"

In recent years, Mat had his fair share of trouble. He tried to do what his family wanted him to do to be successful, but he wasn't happy overall (My brother went through something similar). So he ended up close to his roots, in Virginia Beach, which is close enough to Davin & I. He would come to us whenever he was lonely or just needed help with his car or his motorcycle. Last summer, we went to the free military concerts together. He tried to help Amber find herself a man at the Gary Allen concert. *good times*

Just last week, he came over because his bike was making some crazy noises & he needed Davin to help him fix it. Of course, Davin is always up for helping a friend. Mat came in & checked on me because of my recent bouts of hospitalizations. He had been over the last few weeks and I had been MIA because I'd been in the hospital. He went into detail about how he was going to ask his girlfriend of 2 years, JoAnn, to marry him in the next few weeks, and debated with me & my Grandma Joan about the ring and the way he should go about asking (restaurant... no restaurant.... home cooked meal... which of his grandmother's rings he should use, etc).

I wish for different circumstances. Of course I do. A quick act of irresponsibility left huge family and set of friends devastated, and a community confused. No matter what, we have our memories of Mat. But it doesn't seem like it's enough. He's gone, he's not here any more. And he never will be. And thinking about that might be selfish of us. But selfish thoughts of this situation is all I have in me right now.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


A great number of events have occurred since my last entree. I don't know that I can actually name them all. Basically, 2 separate hospitalizations. The first one was for an infected gall bladder. The last Friday in June, I went to Sentara Leigh since Portsmouth frequently sent me home although I told them how badly it hurt. Eventually, Portsmouth had me transported by ambulance from Sentara Leigh back to their facility with a new level of belief since Sentara Leigh had actually performed tests that showed the infection, rather than sending me away telling me that I "didn't seem to be in enough pain for anything to be really wrong with me". All because I refuse to throw a tantrum & cry. I think not. How about a hospital staff that believes people when they say something hurts? I am not the overreacting type of individual. There are no throw downs on my behalf. I should have been believed.

Needless to say, after that drama subsided, I was admitted & a drain was inserted through my liver & through my bottom 2 ribs to drain the infected gall bladder. I was released the following Thursday (a 6 day hospitalization). By Saturday, the drain was filling with blood instead of the fluid it was supposed to be filling with, and I ended up back in the hospital. This time, until Wednesday. Diagnosis: pancreatitis.

By the weekend, I could tell the drain itself (the tube coming out of my side) was beginning to get infected. I was not in for another hospital stay. So on Monday, I called the hospital to tell them my findings. They requested I come in just for them to check it. Davin came home & drove me to the hospital. They told me to lie down & they yanked the drain out without giving me a whole lot of notice that they were going to do such a thing. It was pretty disgusting (more disgusting than just thinking about it).

So as of Thursday, I'm drainless & I have not had an issue with the gall bladder. I'm really hoping that this gall bladder doesn't act up again until at least the 12th wk of my pregnancy, because that's the only time that anything can be (safely) done about the problem. Let's keep that positive attitude!