Before you start reading go get a glass of water (like a big glass of water) and start drinking it.
It didn't feel fitting not to tell the story of the night I felt I was going to die. Zac and I both documented in a journal... it's just too incredible not to tell.
Now, I know what you're thinking... There is no way someone can die from what happened. Well, that may be the case, but that doesn't change the immense feeling of terror that I felt for the first time...ever.
Zac and I don't get a lot of alone time together and if we do we are both exhausted (anyone else relate?). So when a plan is made to go out of town for a 2 day 1 night adventure, one looks forward to it...verrrrry much!
We drove to Mount Princeton Resort and we were both excited for two days of relaxing in the hot springs. When we got there and saw our cliffside view....we were in awe. It was so gorgeous. So relaxing. So peaceful.
We got our swimsuits on and headed to the hot springs. It was so incredible. The freezing cold river was flowing and we sat on the rocks on the outer banks in temps from 100-160 degrees. I was in heaven. It was 20 degrees outside and we were in natural river water basically taking a bath!
When we got out of the hot springs I felt really light headed. I wrote it off as the extreme temperatures throwing my body off. I got into the car to drive back to our place and I knew something was wrong.
My mind was fuzzy and I was so nauseated.
I got back to our place and drank 4 big glasses of water. I had all the symptoms of the stomach flu. Nausea, diarrhea, aches/pain and a headache. I just need more water I thought. Zac was worried but knew I could hold my own. I, however, wasn't so sure. Are you still drinking your water I told you to start drinking?
We got back in the car to drive to a brewery (our favorite thing to do) that was recommended to us in Salida. The entire car ride I felt like I was having the worst anxiety attack. I was dizzy, confused, sick and had no idea what was wrong with me. I drank another 32 oz of water and a gatorade. My stomach was feeling better but I was growing fatigued and weak. Zac told me he would just grab a sandwich and Wal-Mart so we could head back to our place.
Here I go, I thought, ruining another vacation.
I am such a people pleaser but at this moment; I just needed to get back to our place. When we got back I told Zac I needed to go to the hospital. I was disoriented and my body was twitching. Not having any health insurance (grrr...that's a different post) we try to avoid doctors and hospitals at all costs. So we drove to the hospital and sat in the parking lot waiting until I felt better so we wouldn't have to pay.
My dizziness had gone away and I was feeling a little more relaxed. We headed back to our place and chatted for a couple hours while I laid down. It was a lot of fun. We laughed about being young. All the shenanigans we got into. And ultimately how Cohen changed our whole life.
Oh, no bedtime.
It was about 10pm and I was growing tired. My whole body was hot so I got into bed and tried to sleep. About five minutes later Zac came over and started to ask me questions. I had a hard time answering them. I was confused and didn't know how I was feeling. I was hot but didn't want to move. I started to shake complaining of being cold. Zac began putting beer bottles on me (as that was the only cold packs we had...ha) and told me to hold still so he could do so. I began to scream and told him not to put them on me.
Mackenzie, get out of bed we are going to the hospital.
I slowly got out of bed and fell to the floor when I tried to stand. I couldn't feel my feet. My arms were cramping and growing numb. My heart rate was so fast and this feeling of impending doom came upon me. Zac pulled back up on the bed. I felt like I was fading...
Zac, I'm going to die tonight.
Since we are out in the middle of no where it took an ambulance 30 minutes to get where we were. The entire time Zac is on the phone I can be heard saying "Jesus, be with me" "Jesus, I want to see Cohen" "Jesus, I'm not ready"... since I am so dehydrated there were no tears coming down my face but I was whimpering. I couldn't feel my hands. My mouth was so dry. My lips chapped. I felt so weak. Seriously guys...not being dramatic... it was horrible.
The ambulance crew walked in and I'm sure they were confused. Here we are in this romantic suite and I am half naked (because I was so hot) with beer bottles all over me. I could only imagine what they thought for a split second.
They asked my name and where I was. I knew but I had a hard time saying the words as each time I spoke I became really winded. They hooked me up to oxygen and monitored my heart rate. It was elevated and I had a lot of CO2 in my system.
My body was going into shock.
They hauled me onto the ambulance and took blood samples. When he told me I was going to receive Valium, I told him I was sensitive to medications. He only gave me half. Thanks Mr. Ambulance Man. My doctor gave me plenty of fluids and potassium as I was severely deficient in both. Zac and I just sat there looking at each other as the IV pumped me full of fluids.
It was then I started to cry.
Zac, I'm sorry I ruined our vacation. I'm sorry that we are going to have to pay a hospital bill we can't afford. I'm sorry that you are so tired and have to drive me home. I'm sorry we didn't spend our night together in a romantic way. I was crying so hard. I felt like I had ruined everything.
He just smiled at me and told me that my life is more important than a hospital bill but for "practical Mackenzie" it seemed that we were now only adding to the stress of finances. I was mad at myself.
The discharged me almost 4 hours later. I wasn't allowed in the hot springs and had to drink lots and lots of fluids---hence my 2 gallon a day H2O spree---but as I got in the car I remembered something.
Romance doesn't mean happy and easy.
Romance is when I am screaming in pain and Zac rub my hand as he talks to the dispatcher on the phone. Romance is saying "Don't worry about the money, you're worth it." Romance is laughing in spite of the seriousness to ease my nervousness. Romance is driving your dehydrated and sick wife home while holding her hand. Romance is filling out medical paperwork so I can rest. Romance is staying up to make sure I fall asleep. Romance is getting up early to get me breakfast. So in that sense, I had a very romantic time away with my husband. My Zacy. My friend. My best friend.
I was told I had a viral infection (stomach) along with being severely dehydrated and my body could not absorb the water as I was lacking severely in potassium. It was horrific. I drink 2 gallons a day so I never have to experience that again.
One of my regulars at work said "Oh yeah, my brother died from that..."
I had romance in a new way this weekend. I learned that I have to take care of my body more than taking care of other "stuff." That our body actually does need water!! Maybe one day we'll go back....
Seriously though... are you done drinking your glass of water?