Saturday, October 20, 2007

ER's, IV's, CT's and MOPS

Yesterday morning, at precisely 5:45AM, I woke up to a pain that I can only describe as feeling like I had been stabbed. It was excruciating and I could barely talk. I had to hit Michael a few times until he finally woke up enough for me to beg him to pray. I had no idea what was wrong, but I knew it was bad because breathing was a painful process. I couldn't sit, stand, or lie down. For those of you that are mommies and have experienced a contraction, think back to what it felt like before you got drugs, with no let-up in between - it was like having 1 solid, never-ending contraction. I was miserable and sobbing, and poor Michael had no idea how to help. After 45 minutes of him insisting that we go to the ER, I finally gave in when it became apparent that the pain wasn't going to just go away. He was very worried that it might be my appendix because of the location of the pain, while I was just worried about either passing out or throwing up because of the agony. So at 7AM, with kids up & dressed (thanks in no part to me), he scooted the kids to our next door neighbor, then helped me into the van.

We raced to the local stand-alone ER where my sister works where they ran a quick urinalysis to determine that I was indeed not pregnant - Michael turned pale when the nurse mentioned the possibility. He then informed us that if we were to stay there for further testing, only to find out that the problem was my appendix, they'd have to send me over to the hospital where they would run all of the same tests again. The reason? We're cash-paying patients, so they can't transfer all of my records. The result? Two ER visits, with the exact same tests, resulting in the exact same charges!! Uugghh!!! After a quick 'look' between Michael & myself, we decided to just play-it-safe by going directly to the hospital. Thankfully, my sister suggested we go to a new, nearby hospital/ER because she'd heard several people say that they hadn't waited long to be seen. Quick? Sounded go to me - who was still in serious agony!

So, after a quick 15 minute drive, we walked into a completely empty ER waiting room, signed in, were triaged, taken directly to a room, seen by a doctor, hooked up to an IV and given pain meds, all within an hour - yes, an hour!!! Not sure what ER's are like in other parts of the country, but here, it's standard practice to wait at least 6 hours in the waiting room. Anyway, the pain meds took the edge off of the pain, but I laid on the gurney, very uncomfortably for about an hour and a half before being taken for a CAT scan - my first. Thankfully, I didn't have to drink that awful barium drink that I remember my mother having to drink (and subsequently, throw up) before each CAT scan she underwent. I was sure that if I had to drink, then subsequently throw up, that stuff, I would indeed die - I had one of those tickles in my throat that I couldn't clear, and coughing hard enough to clear it would cause spots and blur my vision, so the prospect of wretching my gutts up caused me great distress.

Anyway, the CAT scan took about 5 minutes, then they returned me to my room where we waited for another 30 minutes for the doctor to return with the results. The results? A 'complex ovarian cyst'. Yes, a cyst - something that I've had more times than I can count, but the worst that I've ever had! So, my discharge instructions were given, a prescription for Vicodin included, then I got a quick shot...of morphine - wew-hoo!!...into my IV tube before the tape was ripped from my arm (OUCH!).

After making a stop at the pharmacy, then another stop at a local fast-food spot for take-home hot dogs, we arrived home, I ate 1 dog, then headed straight to bed. There, I tossed & turned, grimaced & moaned, and rested-fitfully until 6PM. When I woke up, my first thought was feeding the kids, which I knew I wasn't capable of doing. When I inquired of Michael as to whether he'd given any thought to what he might give them, he informed me that my neighbor and fellow MOPS friend had provided spaghetti & bread. What a humongous blessing!!!

Tonight? Another MOPS friend provided us with a yummy chicken enchilada dish, complete w/ rice & beans and tortilla chips. And, yes tomorrow night is taken care of too!!! Have I ever mentioned how grateful I am for my MOPS group? These ladies are amazing!!!! Whenever someone is in need, our group is quick to pull together to help, whether it is meals, childcare, transportation, or just prayer. I'm always very happy to pitch in to do my part, but it's a completely different thing to be on the receiving end. It's humbling, and yet I'm so very thankful for what God has provided for us. To know that the family is being fed when I cannot stand in the kitchen to prepare a meal, it's absolutely awesome!

Anyway, today I'm feeling better, but only slightly. I no longer feel that I have a knife wound, but I am still very sore and tired. I've had a hard time just laying around, so I did attempt to vacuum, but only succeeded in getting 1/2 of the living room done - Michael scolded me, then said he'd finish the other 1/2 :) The rest of my day has consisted of sitting, then standing, then sitting, then standing some more, taking a shower, then a bath, then sitting a little more. I'm tired of sitting, but should probably enjoy it while I can, huh?