The Emergency Plan

It happened two years ago.

I awoke in the middle of the night,  my tongue swollen so big that it filled my mouth. I was having a major allergy attack. Very frightened,  I lay there a minute,  thinking what to do.  Waking Bo wasn’t an option.  He wouldn’t understand and couldn’t help me, couldn’t even call for help, if necessary.

Luckily, I already had an allergy kit with fast-acting Benadryl,  two Epi-pens and prednisone,  along with printed directions for using them.

So I went downstairs, gauging the reaction, looking for a sign of my throat closing with anaphylactic shock.  Should I call someone?  Fortunately, the Benadryl worked. I had the pen in my hand but didn’t use it; the swelling started to abate.

And then I began thinking.  If something happened to me and I had to be taken to the hospital – or worse,  I needed an emergency plan so Bo would be taken care of.  He wouldn’t understand what was happening to me and couldn’t take care of himself or our pets.

So I began to plan, talking with friends and family, asking for their input.  I ended up with a rather elaborate Emergency Plan which is now posted inside our front door.  It begins with a phone chain – who would be called first,  then whom he would contact, and so on.

I included medical directions,  information about important papers and documents, a list of friends, family and  neighbors  and how they could help, doctors, phone numbers and addresses.   I had to include someone to oversee my own care.  At the time I made the plan, my mother was living, so I included her care, but now that section has been removed.

I had to find friends who would take the cats and dog temporarily or permanently if the need arose, and then left detailed information about each pet’s care: daily diets, routines and veterinarian.

Finally, I distributed copies along with a set of house keys to everyone involved, including my lawyer.  And the most important copy – posted inside our front door.

I want to believe that if I’m really well prepared – well,  you know, they say that what we plan for never happens.  I’m hoping.

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2 Responses to The Emergency Plan

  1. charlotte guarino says:

    Nancy, what are you allergic to?

  2. thom sweeney says:

    Nancy, I think of that a lot. I remember two years ago when I had to be taken to the hospital, I had to call 911 and call my closest son to come over to be with Helen. I thought I was having a stroke,( but LUCKILY I mis-diagnosed it!) Helen would norm. She was blissfully unaware of what at the time was a critical situation. An emergency plan it is!! Thank you once more. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your insights…..and your situation, thom PS On a lighter note – I may have also misdiagnosed your swollen tongue as a result of talking on the phone with Karen P for two hous!

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