How many times have we heard the old axiom, don't take your health for granted. Yet, often times we do until it is too late and something happens. A month ago, I caught a cold while staying with a friend in CA. It hit me hard and stayed with me for a long time, so I was not feeling all that well when my family headed to Michigan for my mother-in-law's funeral in late March. Flying is never fun with congestion and I really felt the pressure on both flights.
I was improving slowly and on one of our last nights in MI, my wife's cousin brought over some pizzas that were thickly cheesed, and I had a few slices with a glass of wine. Three hours later, I experienced some severe upper stomach/chest pains that were very similar in scope to what I experienced after the decadent Francesinha tasting (judging) in Portugal last October. I realized the common thread in both "attacks" was large quantities of cheese. I was acutely aware of where the pain was and all symptoms and did some quick research online to see what I could find. I wasn't concerned that this was heart related given where and what type of pain I felt. It bought me a little time and finally, I decided to ask my wife to drive me to the local ER, thinking that I was pretty sure as to the causation.
To make a long story, much shorter … after a night into day of all kinds of tests, my fears were spot on. This had been a gall bladder attack, and a single stone was found inside that organ, which would have to be removed altogether. Fortunately, there was no blockage of the bile duct or liver and therefore, I was able to be discharged and the next morning, we flew back home where I immediately got in contact with my physician. I was able to get scheduled for the following week.
On Monday of this week, I underwent the surgery necessary to remove my gall bladder and have been at home recovering ever since. Now three days later, the post-op pain is still there, but I was lucky to catch this early on and was able to have laparoscopic surgery (using a scope and four small incisions). Supposedly, I will be able to return to my normal dietary plan in due course. Right now, that is hard for me to fathom. I can say that I am not taking my health for granted and am blessed to have had an excellent surgeon do the procedure. So for those of you wondering why it had been awhile since I have been able to drink wine, there it is.