Carol Giombetti | CaringBridge

Carol Giombetti

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Carol and I (her husband Fred) and daughter Kristen had just started our two weeks summer vacation at our cottage in Chases Ocean Grove, Dennisport Ma. The previous week Carol and Kristen had taken a trip to the University of New Hampshire to check out Kristen's dorm room to see what it was like and to scope out what she could use for the up coming move in on Aug 26th. She was out shopping with Kristen in Durham NH while in the store walking the aisles Kristen asked Carol a question to which Carol knew the answer was no in her head but was unable to speak the word. Kristen was concerned and asked if she was alright and should she call me. Some minutes passed and Carol regained her ability to speak. Kristen questioned her if she was ok and remarked that she looked sad and was talking like a  two year old. Carol (the WebMD queen) did a quick self evaluation for stroke and came up with no stroke signs ie: raise arms,stick out tongue and knew her name and where she was etc. She passed it off to anxiety about everything leading up to losing her baby girl to college. For the rest of the week she was having some trouble with words now and then and numbers were giving her trouble as well at work. Carol went and saw our primary care physician who had a full blood workup done. The results from that showed everything was good. He told her to make an appointment with a neurologist which she did but scheduled it after our vacation. So we went on vacation Saturday Aug 6th. While playing a game of cribbage with Kristen that afternoon Carol had trouble playing the cards and pegging the points on the scoreboard. She would play a 3 and say 6, add the cards incorrectly and not be able to see the blocks of 5 holes on the scoreboard therefore making it very difficult to peg the correct number of holes. I think this was the first sign something was really wrong. The next day Sunday Aug 7th Carol and I around mid day played two games of backgammon, she beat the pants off me both games and I saw no problem with her counting and moving the pieces around the board. A little later I layed down for a nap. I hadn't closed my eyes more than ten minutes when Carol woke me up after exiting the bath room and said she just didn't feel right and had some numbness on the top her foot and we should go to the hospital ER. That was enough for me so we got in the car and drove to Cape Cod Hospital in Hyannis. When we were checking in and mentioned the symptoms the woman said that sounds like a stroke alert and she was admitted immediately.

The first doctor to see her did a complete stroke evaluation and it came up 0 (nothing wrong). They ordered a chest xray and we waited for some time, then they came in and said we need to do a CT scan. Some more time passed and eventually another doctor came into the room and pulled up the images of the chest and head. He proceeded to tell us that there was a lesion on the lung and an intracranial mass on the left side of her brain and that she should be checked into the hospital immediately, that she needs and MRI as soon as possible. We were both in shock at this point. We looked at each other and both said the same thing, we were not residents of Cape Cod and that we would return to Ashland and seek out help in Boston.

At this point I think I will make journal entries to tell the rest of the story that will lead up to the current status.

Carol, I love you with all my heart, you are not alone in this. -Fred 

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