Monday, October 5, 2009

the tale of Crazymama's hospital adventures

the full uncut version of my hospital adventure. what led up to it, the who's , the how's the delights and disappointments.
you asked for it, so here you go. my hospital adventure with Pancreatitis. my new arch nemesis.

seriously? what were the odds? the hubs was out of town for the week working. I was doing my thing as a single mom and doing great i hafta say , and Tuesday i woke up with an agonizing GUT ACHE.

at 7:00am i was suddenly wide awake doubled over in pain.

i even blogged it in this post, but deleted it not wanting to sound whiny. thinking it was nothing. hoping it was nothing, because i so didn't have time to deal with anything real.

so i got the kids ready and out the door, semi on time.

wrangled Pierce onto the bus with this horrible pain, and then got myself ready and out the door and went to class.

at which point ,I'm wishing i could double over or just lay on my stomach and hope the pain would go away.

on the drive i decided i now know what it feels like to be "run through with a broadsword" you know like all battle scenes in those trashy romance highlander novels talk about. NOT the sex scenes, the BATTLE SCENES


i compare it to being Run Through, because the pain was centered underneath and between my boobs right where my rib cage comes up in the middle and it radiated out my back (like I'd been stabbed) . it didn't go away. and it didn't get any better. all day.

So i got out to campus and I'm going to be late as it is, and all the parking spaces were gone, not one to be found in the lot that I park in daily.

With this realization, combined with the pain, i decided i probably wouldn't be able to walk myself all the way to class anyway, without vomiting or passing out from the pain.

I have to say it wasn't until i couldn't get parking that i decided i should probably not go to school that day. yeah i am devoted.

so i drove back home, laid down to rest and wish the pain away, and waited for Pierce to come home from Preschool. time slowed down and minutes lasted hours.

I called my regular DR thinking they'd tell me what to do. well they scheduled me for 3:00 that afternoon. and it was roughly 11:00. I took the appointment. but after checking my symptoms online and Web MD saying i should seek immediate medical attention, i decided to arrange to drop Pierce off at my mom's and I'd drive myself to the ER. I'd called the hubs a few Times by now wondering what he thought i should do. by now it had been a couple hours since my first call to him so he was on board with going in.

i knew something was wrong though so i finally sucked it up, i even packed a bag before i left, knowing I'd want my own stuff with me if i got stuck there and no one would be able to find what i wanted. So i packed a bag with a change of clothes, clean underwear, my toothbrush and hair brush and a house dress. and left it in the car. (sure, i didn't get it until Thursday, but i was glad it was all set and ready when the hubs could retrieve it.)

I took my handy folder of my latest blood work and ultrasound reports with my recent history with me too. just in case they might want to compare the last few reports with what was showing up in the ER tests.

Just going in was a little traumatizing for me. seriously i didn't want to be there, i didn't want anything to be wrong. i just wanted to pretend everything was fine. so i cried at the admitting nurse. i cried and joked with the triage chick. i blubbered at the reassessment ladies.

i didn't call any friends. i didn't want to go in and i didn't want to cry on the phone.

i felt cruddy. i was alone. it was horrible timing. and i was in pain. agonizing pain, a 9 out of 10 on a 1-10 scale of pain. and i have an amazingly high pain tolerance. what does a 10 feel like anyway?

i found myself sitting next to some lady whining about the flu, she was "so sick" , but wouldn't shut her trap or quit breathing on me and she was one of the people NOT wearing a mask! right next to me , who was healthy except for this agonizing pain.i quickly moved seats. wanting to limit contamination. thinking, that's all i needed on top of this mystery pain.

so they loaded me up with morphine that didn't do anything to even dull the pain.

they did the standard blood work, started an IV , did an abdominal ultrasound looking for something exciting.

then i finally got a bed. the nice ladies in the reassessment area bumped me to a bed ahead of others , it pays to be pleasant and pathetic.

they mentioned it could be my gallbladder, or my appendix. They denied me anything to drink the whole time i was there in the ER. just in case i needed surgery, and darn it i forgot my water bottle in the car. my mouth was parched. i was thirsty, i have dry mouth and really there is a point that you just want a freaking sip.

finally after abdominal CT and a few hours of waiting for a Dr. to get around to me, it was decided that i had Acute Pancreatitis.

WHALAH! a real diagnosis.

after hurting all day the nurse , an old- hippy-looking-ponytail-wearing-kinda-grungy-looking MURSE (man nurse) listened to me that i still had pain and gave me DILAUDID and heavenly day i wasn't in pain for the first time in 14 hours! they loaded me up with Zofran again too because i was feeling kind of nauseous.

around 1:00 am Wednesday morning i got upstairs to my room. 301 B.

the hubs was still in CA , the ER Dr's waited too long to tell me anything before he missed the last flight of the evening. he'd have to wait until Wednesday to come home.

my mom had the kids. and i didn't want to trouble anyone else. finally I called a friend and I'm embarrassed i cried on the phone to her about my predicament, she could tell over the phone i was in serious pain.

even though i was all alone, it was kind of a relief to know that #1 i wasn't making it up, #2 there was a reason for the pain. and #3 the hubs was coming home early to help out.


the regimen for Pancreatitis is total bowel rest (sounds pretty right?) . It just means no food or drinks for a couple days. IV fluids, and treatment for the pain and nausea.

i was thinking, SERIOUSLY? no beverages? water, WATER, WAAAATTTTERR(think Sahara desert scene)... just a little water! please? ice chips? anything?

finally they gave me some freaking mouth swabs. are you kidding me? i was thinking and may have even said..."that's supposed to satisfy my thirst, and fix my dry mouth?" I have to admit it did. I'll freely admit, when that's all you can have it's pretty delightful.

Dilaudid is heavenly and mouth swabs are delightful . that's right. Just two new revelations while i had this adventure.

i was fine with no food. and managed with nothing to drink. shocking right?

The hubs blog post updating everyone of my adventure got loads of comments, and the news spread like wildfire that I was in the hospital. i couldn't read any comments until later since my phone had died and i didn't bring the charger. but it's ok anyway. since the first day i slept, called those that needed to know what room i was in, and then slept some more. The hubs got in later that afternoon. just in time to pick up the kids from school. He brought my phone charger and a laptop just in time to figure out there was no WI-FI in this hospital. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? The hubs brought the 5 big kids to visit and you can tell they were worried.

Maybe they were worried because Tuesday i just left them a note to call me when they got home from school, that i was just at the Dr's office. The note said to stay inside, not cook anything, and don't go anywhere. but reminded the girls to go to piano and Voice (across the street) but no playing with friends. Pierce was a grandma's and to call me if they needed me. that was it.

When it looked like it was going to take longer, my mom picked them up a couple hours later, gathered clothes for the next day, and took them home with her to sleep-over and have dinner. but we didn't tell them i was at the hospital, just that i was having some tests done.

but of course i never made it home since the hospital admitted me.

so of course the kids were freaked. when they came in to visit they were all happy to see that i was OK, the little girls came right in and asked if i was ok, and told me they missed me, hugs and kisses all around and all of the kids piled on the bed with me to watch cartoons and chat. It was funny but my oldest must have worried the most , silently, he didn't say much but sat right next to me. he hadn't slept much the night before. probably up all night worrying. Then the family had to rush home for Pizza being brought by an awesome friend, and rush to Dance class.

The hubs didn't have time to come back and visit that night, but i had other visitors. it was a huge relief just to have the hubs home and taking care of my littles for me. there was so much craziness i wanted them to have some normalcy and be home a little and sleep in their own beds. plus he was tired from his whirlwind trip.

my levels had gone down pretty quickly on the blood work but i still couldn't handle much. i only had to go until late Wednesday night without anything to drink at all. but when i started back on clear liquids it made me sick. let's just say, jello multiplies the 2nd go round.

that day on my liquid diet, i had 3 different colors of jello, 3 different flavors of juice , 2 popcicles, and 3 different kind of broth delivered as my meals. OH YEAH you are jealous. i paid how much a day for this 'hotel' that served me that kind of lame food? ;)

Thursday my Dr. yelled at me for not getting up and walking around more than around my room alot. um yeah i need a shower and a bra on before I'm stepping foot outta this room, which triggered cutting me off the most delightful pain meds ever since the nausea it brought on hindered the gallivanting. since my excuse was i felt so grody from the pain meds and not enough zofran i just needed to sleep. they upped my zofran and put me on other pain meds.

So that afternoon when the hubs retrieved my bag from the car, brought my blow drier and flat iron and my own shampoo, i showered and got dressed in real clothes,and i did my hair and makeup.

yup! i didn't look like a patient at all. the only sign tipping you off that i was the patient happened to be my IV and IV pole. we went down and got a clear beverage in the cafeteria and perused the gift shop. it's amazing how much better i felt when i looked good.

that afternoon and evening the hubs hung out with me, he started my Sookie Stackhouse book series that my fave friend brought me, and wandered the halls with me, he knows that hospital way better than I do. I'm always in bed either having a baby or recovering, and he has to truck in and out over and over, he's learned it well over the years.

A fave girlfriend Lindsey came Thursday night again, and this time she trucked her Xbox 360 in a backpack and her 3 guitar hero guitars so we could Jam, but the dang TV didn't have inputs so we could play so we just hung out, watched some Thursday night TV, and chatted until 11. it was a fabulous evening. i don't get much time alone with her and it's always delightful. we've been friends for a LOOOONG TIME. and she's been a good friend to me over the years.

While she was there, Lindsey got to witness the night nurse reaming me for bending my arm and crimping my IV, and then me getting a new IV put in. Since they put a new one in I started taking off the tape assuming she'd take my old one out, but NO she left it in just to spite me! so I had an IV in each arm, they took a blood draw from my hand in the middle of the night, and i have RAD bruises on my stomach from the blood thinners they gave me every day which are injected there.

i still have my battle wounds from the IV's and injections. For your future reference, take my word for it, if they give you a choice between your arm and your rear for an injection of Morphine, take it in the rear. holy crud that sucker hurts in the arm.

Finally, Friday my nurse announced that she'd ordered me a breakfast, and if i could tolerate it without severe pain or vomiting, i could go home! WHOOHOOO! just in time for BUNKO friday night. you can check out this post here for that day's delights.

My Kids are Traumatized from my adventure-

Pierce came to visit on Thursday with the hubs for a minute. He was totally freaked by the lack of mom around, he's never been without me available more than overnight EVER. he kept asking about me Wednesday night, patting my pillow, wondering where i was. not really wanting dad. then when he came in and saw me in the hospital bed, he was nervous, said hi, asked if i was sick, and didn't really want to sit and cuddle with me,he checked out my IV and he suddenly wanted dad.

It was the same thing Friday when i got him off the bus, he asked" Mom, all better? not sick? mom home?" gave me big hugs and then wanted DAD.

and today he told my mom "MOM's home now!" he just wanted to go lay down upstairs with me and watch TV. Pierce was gone all weekend with the rest of the kids to my mother in laws house, so he is going to have a hard adjustment for a few days. my crystal ball tells me I'm going to have a clingy toddler for the next few days.and some sensitive kids.


While i was in the Hospital I had a few visitors. my fave friends both stopped by Jen made it down there before i even saw the HUBS, she's my #1 visitor! she brought me a book to keep me entertained and some GORGEOUS FLOWERS that keep getting better and better. my Mom and little brother Gary brought me some beautiful flowers and came Wednesday night after the hubs retrieved the kids. a bunko friend Emily was doing her clinical in the ER that day and came to visit , my visiting teacher stopped to chat. my sister in law Alicia Brought fabulous fuchsia roses and came with Andrea . My sister in Law Lynell came and chatted and brought me a load of magazines. My mother in law came twice once with magazines and some yummy lotion and a a cute bag and once to drive the hubs to pick up my car and take Pierce home with her.

I was feeling the love. not to mention all of the blog comments, facebook well wishes, texts, and google voice calls . it's kinda nice to know sometimes that people love ya.with a huge showing like that? it was FREAKING AWESOME! so now you know, I'm vain. but it totally made my experience a lot more bearable and way more fun.

Seriously the comment love was FABULOUS, the voice mails were so fun. the hubs had to add the google voice widget, just because it was nerdy and that's how he rolls. a little nerdy goes a long way. he had to add his own flair to the posts he did.


the Dr's never figured out what brought it on. It happens. It's triggered in people that drink alcohol. Um, i don't drink. it happens to people with Gallstones and no, i don't have gallstones. But , if it happens again they will probably remove my gallbladder. fingers crossed i don't have to do that. and of course they kept asking if there was family history of abdominal cancers and no i was glad to report the only thing my family has going on is prostate cancer, thyroid cancer, and skin cancer, so they couldn't even chalk it up to that. But FYI it has nothing to do with being overweight so if you assumed that? i flip you the double ugly rolling bird.


I'm supposed to follow up with my GI Dr. next week. just one more thing to add to the list for that guy. we'll cover it when i go back in after my liver biopsy(today) and colonoscopy(friday). seriously i was worried about this week , and last week had to get in on the action and draw attention to itself. sheesh.

I'm still feeling some pain, and taking the pain meds every 4-6 hours. but otherwise i had a fabulous weekend alone with the hubs. Saturday i rested all day, and blogged a little, then laid down and read, and napped. later the hubs and I did some shopping (costco and dillards) and then hit Carabba's and went to see Whip It. which i loved.

it was more like a weekend away from the kids than recovering from pancreatitis. but we needed the time alone together and he hardly worked which is a rare treat.

Sunday the kids came home in time for Liberty's birthday dinner of BRINNER (that's breakfast for dinner) She turned 10 today. I'll blog more about that in a different all about liberty post.

So those are the adventures.
crazy huh?

Today i have my liver biopsy. whoohoo. whee. yaaaaay. that will be a new adventure. and hopefully will go well. i know I'm super lucky right? anyone wanna trade agenda's today? i'll scrub toilets if you'll get poked in the liver for me? any takers? and holy shiz the co-pays and deductibles. this is going to be over a $1000 week from just co-pays between last weeks fun and this weeks tests. can't wait to see the whole bill. YIKES!

so i have decided a few things for next time if there is a next time. (fingers crossed there is never another next time) but here goes just because i like to be prepared.

  • I'm only going to a hospital ER with Wi-Fi in every room from now on.
  • pack my cell phone charger in my purse when leaving to go to the ER just so i have it and don't have to wait for it.
  • ask if they give dilaudid freely, it's all that worked. I ♥dilaudid!
  • chapstick , lotion, make-up shampoo, blowdrier, flat iron, comfy throw blanket, comfy clothes, underwear, deodorant, toothbrush and toothpaste are all must haves.
  • always have a good pedicure. it was impressive to many. and a great conversation point with the nurses. guy ones especially.
  • Bring a book in my purse, and a water bottle and some hard candy.
  • ah the folder of medical papers is always a good idea. get reports and lab work when being discharged too just to have it handy when following up with my dr.

i think that's it.

that was some story huh? did you get through it in one sitting? or did you have to take a break?or did you just give up?

Thanks to everyone that wished me well, prayed for me , emailed and called, blog commented and facebooked and extra special thanks for those that took time out of their busy schedules to come and visit and keep me company. it meant alot to me.


Have a happy monday!

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© 2009 crazymamaof6


Ruthie Girl said...

Wow, glad you are doing better.

Yeah, the wifi sucks. If you have a wireless card from a cell phone, you can use that. Or Gateway has internet wired through the TV. Its has 2 purposes.

Anyway, thanks for the update. Glad you are alive.

This experience will help you in your nursing classes.

Scrappy Girl said...

I love the way you think...definitely look for a WIFI hospital...I would have needed a valium to help deal with my blogging withdrawl...heehee!

I am glad you are ok. I was worried. I hope things are as easy as possible for you today as well. After all this "fun" I think the hubster needs to show you some real FUN this weekend!


CassiB said...

read it in one sitting. thanks for sharing it. what a crazy week. it really is one of those things that hits you out of nowhere. i hope you don't get it again.
good luck this week with all your fun testing.

andrea said...

Wow....that was some craziness. So sorry it happened at all, and hope it doesn't happen again! Totally stinks that you have all the testing this week right after the hospital hell...nothing like being totally invaded. I hope your kiddos recover quickly, that is traumatizing to have mommy sick in the hospital!

Cara said...

So glad you are feeling better! You would think nothing else could go wrong. Why do we have to keep learning from these challenges? Jeez! Sounds like you have a positive attitude and that counts for a lot. I'll get a biopsy for ya if you come clean my house. Hows that for a friend?

Holly said...

I'm very glad you are feeling better and that you sweet hubby came home from CA for you. What a scary experience! Glad it all worked out so well for you and that you know what to look for next time, hopefully there won't be one! xoxo

jayna said...

glad you are back and feeling mostly better! i hope they get everything figured out! what a trip, huh? loved the story of your adventures!


Susan said...

Thanks for the wonderful update. I'm gald you are home and doing well. Here's hoping that today/this week is uneventful as can be.

Love from Yuma.

mom2three said...

wow what a story! I am sorry that all this happened when your hubby was away...I don't know what I would have done without mine in a situation like that.
I hope your liver sliver thingy today wasn't so icky...what am I talking about it must have been total ick!
I hope that pain meds are awesome and you are not feeling much. In our thoughts! :)
OH and I couldn't read it all in one sitting...the kids kept fighting so I think I have been on your page for an hour now.

Leslie said...

Once again this just proves how amazing you are!! I hope that you recover from all this and that you don't have to go through it again. Glad your husband had the option of coming home early, that is a big relief.

What hospital were you at if you don't mind me asking? you can email me the answer if you prefer.

Amy said...

CRAZY! I'm glad you're doing better.

blah, blah by lindsey said...

glad we got to visit...sorry we couldn't play. next go to a better hotel i mean hospital..hee hee!

Are You Serious! said...

♥ Man oh man! Yay for good friends and family! I don't envy the liver biopsy that just sounds painful also! I'm glad it's better!

Fawn said...

Whoa! Maybe I should check my reader more often!! If I would've stayed up to date, I would've grabbed my KaraLyn and ran down to visit with you as well! But, glad to hear that even though you had this not so fun adventure, you are feeling much better!! Also, that you survived your "pirate adventure". Mine is scheduled for next Monday. Any pointers? Keep me posted!

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