Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Kidney Stones and Big Sur

We are now back home with only memories of our wonderful California trip and uneventful round-trip air travel. Our gracious hosts, Erin and Kris, made our stay very comfortable, and my speaking went well despite the fact that I began my first lecture with terrible kidney stone pain. I was given the option of canceling the lecture, but that in my mind is never a viable alternative. And, anyone who has struggled with the pain of kidney stones knows that there is no way to overcome the pain of a stone except by passing it. I took Vicodin, which we got by phoning my doctor in Grand Rapids, but the pain got so bad that I threw up the water I'd been drinking, plus the Vicodin. So I went on stage, knowing that my speaking would help redirect my pain, and about a half hour into the lecture the pain suddenly vanished (the stone apparently having moved from the ureter to the bladder). The students were fantastic, actually almost seeming to enjoy the show. Our last full day, before lecturing again Monday night, was spent exploring Big Sur and Point Lobos State Reserve along the incomparable California coast. Here is John hidden in the shadow on the left looking out on the pounding waves.