A Bloody Odd Opening Weekend

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Hi, I’m Kristen Day. You may know me as Craig’s wife, or the girl with the funny glasses, or the girl that sings the national anthem sometimes. I’m posting on Craig’s behalf to thank our Dells Raceway Park and chaplaincy families for being so understanding and helpful this weekend. The chaplain is supposed to be the one helping injured drivers and comforting families, but what happens when the chaplain is the one needing help?

As many of you know, Craig’s nose started bleeding profusely on Wednesday, April 5. I will spare you some of the really gory photos, but at any given time he could produce a half-cup of blood before the bleeding stopped. Craig went to the Milwaukee VA hospital twice. On Saturday, the day of the Icebreaker 100 practice, he got a balloon put in to help stop the bleeding.

Craig resting after having a balloon put in place to stop his nosebleed. It worked like an old school Reebok Pump… so not that well.

We made it to our hotel on Saturday and Craig was exhausted. Despite having the balloon in his nose, he was still bleeding excessively. We went to the track, and just before the Icebreaker 100 started, Craig doubled over bleeding like a horror movie.

What a gorgeous day for a race! How often do you get 70┬░ and overcast in Wisconsin?

The track ambulance picked Craig up, and we immediately went to the VA hospital in Madison. The ENT doctor removed the balloon and blood sprayed from Craig’s nose like a fountain! They packed Craig’s nose with expandable cotton and the bleeding finally started to subside. The downside… think about what it’d be like to have a popsicle stick shoved up each nostril, and then wait for it to expand. Not fun.

Craig after his nostrils were packed. This is not a lot of blood compared to what was cleaned up!

Craig after his nostrils were packed. This is not a lot of blood compared to what was cleaned up!

Today Craig is home resting, and we’re following up on a treatment plan. The bleeding has to stop to pinpoint the source and cauterize it. The crazy thing is that nothing triggered this. No head injuries, no Fight Club. It was just a spontaneous nose bleed gone awry.

Thank you to Jerry Auby and the Dells Raceway Park EMTs for getting Craig stable. We are also so thankful to nurse Shauna, Dr. Lucas, Dr. Matt and Dr. Jessica at the Madison VA for listening and being so patient. We feel so bad about the bloody mess we left behind!

Thank you to all of the drivers, crews, friends and family that send well-wishes. We burned out out phone batteries at the hospital trying to keep up with race results!

We especially want to thank Todd Christopherson, who many of you know from Jefferson Speedway. Todd volunteered to help Craig at the Icebreaker 100, and obviously God knew Craig would need help! Thank you for stepping in and being there for our track.

Three years ago I knew nothing about racing. I still feel like I know very little, but I know it’s a community with hard working, caring people that have each other’s backs. It’s a group of people that look forward to our brief Wisconsin summers, and our first race is like a family reunion. We can’t wait to see all of you again in May.

Kristen