Saturday, June 2, 2012
Well, that was no fun!
Thursday morning I was a little uncomfortable in bed so I got up and laid on the couch with a book. I thought I was just sore from our hike. After Rich left for work, I went into the kitchen to make some breakfast. As I was standing at the stove, I was overcome with a sudden, sharp, severe pain in my left side. It quickly spread to my left lower back and around to my abdomen. People, this was the most horrendous pain I have ever experienced, other than maybe (maybe!) labor in childbirth. (Although I have three children, I only had one labor followed by three Csections, so I am not even sure I can compare).
I will spare you all the details of Jane trying to deal with this crazy pain and trying to figure out what was going on. Eventually, after literally lying on the floor and not thinking I could get up, I managed to haul myself onto the bed and call Rich. "I think I need to go to the Clinic." This is not something you want to hear from your wife who doesn't ever want to go to the Clinic. He rushed home and drove me across town, where I was quickly admitted, stuck several times for blood work and an IV, xrayed, given a cup in which to deposit a sample, hooked up to IV fluids and given a pain shot in my butt. "We can't see it, but all symptoms are pointing to a kidney stone."
Between the IV fluids, the pain shot and sleeping in their little room, I didn't feel too bad when we left. I parked myself on the couch and slept the rest of the day. Around 8:30 PM, the pain returned with a vengeance. Because of where we live, we do not have a hospital, an E.R, a doc-in-the-box. After Clinic hours, if you need to be seen, you have to call Public Safety and they will notify the on-call provider who will have to go in and open the Clinic in order to see you. I really DID NOT want to have to do this so I was trying to tough it out, although it was getting harder and harder to handle. Rich suggested I take one of the Tylenol 3's I had left from a dental procedure and I finally gave in. He laughs at me sometimes because I am so anti-establishment in many ways and so rule-bound in others. Like, I don't think I should ever take medication that's been prescribed for something else. Am I gonna get IN TROUBLE for taking those Tylenol 3's when they were not given to me for this problem? What if they somehow interact in a weird way with something else that's already in my system? (This one is not too overly dramatic because I do have strange medication reactions at times). And so on. But I was desperate and they got me through the rest of the night.
I was not feeling all that terrible yesterday morning but I wanted to ask if I could get some pain meds for the weekend, just in case. I called and left a message. Someone called me back and said the doctor said if what I was given was not working, I could get something else. "What I was given?" They hadn't sent me home with anything, which seemed sort of odd to me at the time but I was kinda doped up and didn't ask about it. She called back and said to come in in two hours to get my medication. Before the two hours passed, I was in agony again and didn't think I could drive myself, so my kind husband came home to get me once again, even though he was in the middle of one of his busiest prep days of the year. We arrived at the Clinic and I was told that I needed to be seen by a provider again. So we had round two of bloodwork, peeing in a cup, more IV fluids and this time, morphine in the IV. As the morphine entered my system, a series of raised red lines began to form on my arm. Uh-oh, morphine allergy! See what I mean about my reactions? No wonder I am slightly paranoid, right? And you were making fun of me earlier, weren't you? The provider asked if I was having any other symptoms. I asked, "like what?" "Difficulty breathing?" OMG. I did not want to go into panic mode so I kept telling myself it was really all under control. She was sitting right there watching me. She would know what to do, right? Benadryl to the IV and all was well. Whew.
So "picking up meds" turned into several more hours in the Clinic. Also my white cells were now out of whack so an infection was added to the list of problems. I finally went home with FloMax (yes, just like those annoying commercials), an antibiotic, and pain meds. I settled back onto the couch and tried to read and/or rest while drinking lots of water. At some point I told Rich I would really like some ginger ale and some grapes, so off he went to the store. Didn't I say he was very kind? I hadn't had anything to eat since the previous day's breakfast. He came home and fixed me a glass of ginger ale, which I picked up and promptly dropped, spilling lots of liquid and ice cubes all over several books, the carpet and the coffee table. This is when I felt like I was going to lose it and burst into tears. It just seemed like the final straw!
This night was not as bad as the first but still not pleasant. I read, napped, drank water, watched a little TV, we chatted, and around 1:30 AM I hobbled down the hallway to the bathroom. I was given a little strainer type thing to try to "catch" any stones that came out and there it was--a very tiny, brown, ugly, misshapen rock-like thing. I cannot believe something so small can cause so much pain! It was a marvel! I had to show Rich, "Hey, do you think this is a kidney stone?!" We googled kidney stone and were amazed at all of the different kinds. Look them up! You will be intrigued! The little jewel was dropped into a plastic container to take back to the Clinic. I suddenly felt 80% better. Just like that.
They'd left my IV port in my arm in case I needed more fluids and told me to come back to the Clinic this morning. I got up feeling like a new woman! The sun was shining! My house was so pretty! My tomatoes were growing! Rich had done the dishes and put away the laundry! Life was grand! If I could have skipped all the way to the Clinic, I would have! I handed off the stone to be sent out for analysis and they took out my IV port. Everyone was all smiles! You did it! You passed it! Gold star!
I am an iced tea freak. It's pretty much the only thing I drink. But now I have learned that although tea is pretty healthy, it's also a diuretic so it goes right through you and doesn't really do much toward hydration. I was given a new rule: for every glass of tea I drink, I am supposed to have an equal glass of water. I will have to be a reformed tea freak because I sure don't ever want to go through this again. Drink your water, peeps. Keep those kidneys healthy. xoxo