An Otherwise Ordinary Day {Every patient has a story.}

The next several posts will be about my recent hospital stay for what has been deemed “an acute infection of unknown origin.” I’m writing about my experience in order to process what happened—and is happening—to me.                                                                                    

I would swear I had a neck when I came in here.

After several days of feeling “not quite right” I wake up and know something is terribly wrong.

“We have to go,” I croak to Precious. So we drag my exhausted self to a walk-in clinic, whereupon I am promptly instructed to go to the emergency room.

“You have neutropenia,” says the doctor. “Something we often see in cancer patients. You’re not a cancer patient, correct?”


“You have a fever of 101 and your white blood counts are low. You need to get to the ER, now.”

I start to cry, that’s how bad I feel, how frightened I am becoming.

Precious drives me to Vanderbilt and I resist the urge to Google scary diseases on the way. Thankfully I don’t have the energy for it.

I have long been a person who says she “wants to know, even if it’s bad,” but right then I am not so sure.

The nurse at the ER put a mask on me, and repeatedly expresses her surprise when I tell her, repeatedly, that I am not undergoing treatment for cancer.

“No,” I say. “I’ve never had a cancer diagnosis.”

I am convincing myself, of course, that I’m about to get one.

26 thoughts on “An Otherwise Ordinary Day {Every patient has a story.}

  1. Amy, you are in my prayers. Take care and hope you are better very soon. Kathleen

  2. Amy Lyles,
    I am so sorry. Have missed you at church and wondered where you have been. Rest and know we love you. Lynn

  3. Sweet friend, what a horror. I cringe at the thought of you going through that. So glad to have you on this side of it. Continuing to pray for complete good health. Much love

  4. I am so glad you are writing about this. Write what needs to be written, sister! And I am grateful that it sounds like you are now better. As an aside, I am also a medical googler. And it always seems that google tells me something like … You either have dry skin or … CANCER! And yet, I always google. Sending love to you! xxxx

  5. I’m so sorry you are experiencing such a scary ordeal! My best thoughts and earnest prayers are with you, My Friend!!

  6. This is just so unbelievable. Hope you are doing well and we can’t wait to read more. Hugs. B

    1. Thank you, dear woman. I am doing better. More follow-up labs on Monday, so I’ll check in then. I appreciate your patience…

  7. Alw! I am so upset to hear you’ve been ill! Please know you are in my thoughts and prayers! Love you!

    1. Thank you, dear girl. Out of the blue and quite a shock. I got great care, though, and seem to be on the mend. Hope you both are well. Love!

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