[From time to time, I will illustrate my story characters with: Richard Armitage as Sam Wakeforest, Marcia Gay Harden as Sam’s older sister Tessa Wakeforest Shoop Delaney, and Emily Deschanel as Tessa’s sister-in-law Olivia Delaney Wakeforest, Viola Davis as Pauletta Perkins, Cicely Tyson as Nellie Newton, Anna Sophia Robb as Alice Trent, Kevin Spacey as Roger Delaney, Sam Heughan as Todd Wakeforest, Idris Elba as Dominic Perkins, the late Polly Holliday as the Waitress Madge, Donald Sutherland as Aldus Warren, Teri Polo as Lillian Warren, and Ewan McGregor as David Warren, and others as noted.]
Author’s Content Note: “Love in the Great Pine Woods” is a mature love story with dramatic themes of love and relationships. It will mostly be at the PG and PG-13 movie levels. Specific chapters or passages may have a further rating of: L for language, D for dramatic emotions, and S for sensual themes. And I will rate the chapters accordingly. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide for a chapter, then please do not read that chapter. This is my disclaimer. And as is my habit, I will summarize the previous chapter’s events at the beginning of the next chapter.
Author’s Recap from the Previous Chapter: With court in recess for lunch on July 11, 1956 at the Largemont state capitol for the civil suit brought by the Carter Family against the Wakeforest Family about the death of Aiden Carter in the January 2nd avalanche, Sam Wakeforest speeds toward the Wakeforest County Hospital–where the nearly seven months Olivia Wakeforest is under observatgion with a blood clot in her leg–with an unlikely driving companing, Dr. Matt Carter, the brother of the deceased Aiden Carter. Sam and Aiden had briefly pulled Sam’s car over to a shoulder of the road to discuss the merits of each side of the case, which gives both men much to think about. But Sam’s first priority is reaching his wife in the hospital.
“Love in the Great Pine Woods”, Ch. 40 (PG-13, D): Olivia’s Pain
After Sam Wakeforest parks his car in the Wakeforest County Hospital, he and Dr. Matt Carter race inside to Sam’s wife’s Olivia’ Wakeforest’s hospital room around 12:45pm on Monday July 11, 1956.
Up on the second floor of the hospital, Tessa’s hand is fisted and in front of her mouth as she watches her beloved sister-in-law Olivia Wakeforest moans and twists in pain–from a blood clot in her lower left leg–in her hospital bed as a nurse and the young doctor intern try to calm her.
Olivia: “Hmmm. Hhh! Hhh! Hhh!” Olivia whimpers in excruciating pain as tears stream down her cheeks [(2) right]. Her breathing is quick and shallow since her several hours of being in pain and worrying about her unborn baby have reached a breaking point for her as she begins to have a panic attack.
Nurse: “Mrs. Wakeforest. Please remain still, Dear. We cannot help you if you do not.” The older nurse says calmly and soothingly in the hope of getting through to Olivia.
Tessa: “Help her! You’ve done nothing to alleviate her pain so far.” Tessa charges forlornly. She hates to see Olivia in such agony—and it has only worsened as the morning has gone on.
Dr. James: “Mrs. Delany, Mrs. Wakeforest is in pain because the blood thinner medicine we gave her, has not worked. The blood clot must still be there in her leg.” As a young doctor, he is still learning the ropes, but he is all they have at the moment.
Tessa: “Well, try another medicine!” Tessa looks wild eyed.
Olivia: “Please! Make the pain go away!” Olivia pleads in desperation. Her lower left leg is red and swollen—the swelling is contributing to her pain. She likely has a deep vein thrombosis [(3)] blood clot.
Dr. James: “Mrs. Wakeforest, I cannot give you anything stronger. It would harm the baby.”
Olivia: “Help me!” Olivia implores.
Tessa: “But there must be something you can do?”
Dr. James: “There is nothing.” He shakes his head in distress.
Sam Wakeforest and Dr. Matt Carter are directed from the second floor nurses’ station to Olivia Wakeforest’s hospital room, and they dash in there.
Sam: “Olivia, My Darling, I’m here!” Sam rushes to his wife’s side and instantly cradles her in his arms. Her tears and her face contorting in pain are anguishing to him.
Olivia: “Sam.” Olivia acknowledges him weakly. She is in too much pain to even recognize Dr. Carter.
Sam: “We’ll make you feel better soon. I’ve brought Dr. Carter to help, My Darling.” Sam strokes her hair and looks beseechingly at Dr. Matt Carter.
Dr. Matt Carter: “Who is in charge here?” Dr. Carter asks commandingly.
The nurse recognizes his authoritative tone, as well as remembering Dr. Carter from other volunteer shifts that he has done at the hospital when he was vacationing in the area. Then she looks over at the very young Dr. James and tilts her head.
Dr. James: “I am.” He croaks, then coughs to modulate his voice better. “Kkkhhh! I am.” Dr. James states more assuredly.
Dr. Matt Carter: “I am Dr. Matt Carter and I was Mrs. Wakeforest’s orthopedic surgeon on her leg repair.” He picks up her chart on a clip board hanging from the edge of her bed and he peruses her vital signs and such. “What treatment has been done so far to alleviate her blood clot?”
Dr. James: “I ordered 10 ccs of the blood thinner to be administered in the past hour. She seems to have no relief.” He shakes his head.
Dr. Carter: Reaching his hand out toward the young doctor’s stethoscope hanging around his neck, Dr. Carter asks. “May I?”
Dr. James nods to the senior physician—well, senior by five years or so, but that level of experience can make a world of difference—and he hands his stethoscope to Dr. Carter. Dr. Carter listens to Olivia’s heart rate—it is beating fast, as to be expected with the clot and the level of pain that she is experiencing—and then at her lungs, and finally at her injured but healed lower left leg.
Dr. Carter: “I think her blood clot is still localized to her lower leg.”
Tessa: “But her back hurts so much. They were worried about the clot going to her lungs—or worse.”
Dr. Carter: “She is experiencing pain spasms that are very painful, but not clot related.” Then he turns to the young doctor. “What have you given Mrs. Wakeforest for the pain?”
Dr. James: “Well, nothing!” He responds defensively. “She is pregnant. Any medicine will harm the baby.”
Dr. Carter: “That is not altogether the case.” He eyes the young and very green doctor. “And if we can give her some pain relief, that might buy us enough time to neutralize the blood clot with the blood thinner. Bring in a portable anesthesia tank and mask. I will administer a small dose—just enough to give her a break from the pain. It will be the same dose that we give mothers in labor. It won’t actually knock her out, just relieve the pain for her.”
Olivia: “Please, stop the pain.” Olivia whimpers in pain.
Sam: “Please do it.” Sam stares trustingly at Dr. Carter.
Nurse: “I’ll fetch the anesthesia tank, Dr. Carter.” The Nurse responds when the young doctor does not.
Tessa caringly pats Olivia’s shoulder while Olivia is still being rocked by her husband Sam.
Tessa: “It won’t be long now, Olivia. Just hold on.”
Olivia: “Hmm. Hmm.” Still whimpering in pain, at least Olivia’s breathing has settled down into a steady slow rhythm now that Sam is here and holding her.
They wait the five minutes for the nurse to return with the anesthesia gas tank. Sam is gently rocking his weeping wife Olivia in his arms.
Dr. Carter: Gently tapping Olivia’s shoulder, Dr. Carter says soothingly. “Let’s put this gas mask on you a bit. Now take deep breaths, Mrs. Wakeforest.”
Olivia is so consumed with the pain that she doesn’t even notice her husband Sam leaning back a bit to allow Dr. Carter to put the mask on her. Then Dr. Carter slowly opens the valve to let a small amount of anesthesia gas flow into Olivia’s lungs. At first, Olivia gives no reaction. Then after several moments, her eyes widen in surprise. And everyone holds their breath.
Olivia: “It stopped hurting.” Olivia whispers in hushed wonder, only slightly muffled by the anesthesia mask that she wears. “I don’t feel any pain.” She is still sore from her thrashing about with the ancillary muscle spasms in her back, but the excruciating pain in her leg and back has abated, for now.
Sam: “Truly?” Olivia nods weakly. “I’m so glad, My Darling.” Sam gently kisses the top of her head.
Dr. Carter: “Good. Let me check your vitals, Mrs. Wakeforest.” Olivia nods drowsily as she continues to breathe in the low level of anesthesia gas. She is exhausted from the pain and the stress. Dr. Carter checks her pulse and listens to her heart, lungs, tummy, and legs. Then he issues an order for a slightly higher dose of the blood thinner in Mrs. Wakeforest’s IV line to try to alleviate the blood clot, in order to prevent surgery being necessary.
Tessa: “Thank you .” Tessa whispers a prayer of thanks.
Dr. James seeing that his former patient is now in good hands, better hands, he turns to slip from Olivia Wakeforest’s hospital room. But Dr. Carter calls him back.
Dr. Carter: “Dr. James, please come over here and consult with me about Mrs. Wakeforest’s condition.”
Dr. James: “Yes, Sir.” Dr. James nods, then he walks over to the bed.
Dr. Carter: “I would like you to also check Mrs. Wakeforest’s vital signs.”
Dr. James nods and does so—first taking his stethoscope back from Dr. Carter, and then proceeding to listen to Mrs. Wakeforest’s heart, lungs, stomach, and leg. Then Dr. James moves the sthethoscope back to Olivia Wakeforest’s pregnant tummy—pressing it to first one side of her belly, and then to the other. Dr. James quickly looks up at Dr. Carter, who smiles and nods at him. Then Dr. Carter gestures for Dr. James to relay his report to Mr. & Mrs. Wakeforest.
Sam looks questioningly at the young Dr. James. Then he looks over at Dr. Carter, whose face remains impassive and stoic—though a curl to his lips is threatening to burst forth.
Sam: “What is it?” Sam asks with trepidation. “Is the baby alright?”
Olivia: “Is our baby alright?” Olivia asks through a haze of next to no pain and sleepy exhaustion.
Dr. James: Dr. James smiles broadly at the Wakeforest’s. “They seem to be.”
Sam nods gratefully, then he smiles lovingly at Olivia in his arms—she is almost asleep. Then Sam’s thoughts focus in on one important detail in Dr. James’ report – and Sam looks up at the doctor in wondrous shock. They?
To be continued with Chapter 41
References for Ch. 40 by Gratiana Lovelace, June 14, 2016 (Post #923)
1) The “Love in the Great Pine Woods” story cover is a composite of two images manipped by Grati:
a)the Richard Armitage portrait is from the 2011 Project Magazine photo shoot and article interview, that was found at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/Richard/Promos/ProjectMagJuly2011/album/slides/ProjectMag-05.html;
b) the snowy Pine forest vertical image was found on Pinterest at https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/62/fa/ff/62faff1253d55f571eb3659cc7661e73.jpg
2) Olivia Delaney crying is Emily Deschanel found at https://pmctvline2.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/emily-deschanel-bones.jpg
3) For more information about blood clots causes and treatment, please visit http://www.medicinenet.com/blood_clots/article.htm ; Deep Vein Thrombosis Blood clots and pregnancy info was found at http://www.medicinenet.com/blood_clots/page2.htm ; and slide 6 of 19
Previous Blog Ch. 39 Story link with embedded illustrations: