Wednesday, August 30, 2006

My Evening at the ER

A recounting of the events of Saturday evening by myself to myself.

It was a dark and stormy night...wait, wrong story. It was a regular sunny Saturday and I did regular Saturday things. I was noticing some annoying symptoms that made me think that I might have a bladder infection, but I thought that they would be endurable until Monday when I could see the Dr. However, Saturday afternoon they became annoyingly worse and then I suddenly got a bad pain in my the lower right portion of my back. My thought process went something like this:

Minute #1 - Huh, a pain in my back
Minute #2 - Wow, this is annoying
Minute #3 - This can't be right
Minute #4 - Okay, we have to do something about this.
Minute #5 - I have reached my pain threshold. Funny, I thought that I would last longer.

With it being the weekend and all, we needed to head to the Emergency Room to get treatment. I thought that I would put up a fuss about going, but excruciating pain takes all the fuss out of a person. We got to the ER, signed in, had a seat in the waiting area and I think that is when I started to rock back and forth. It seemed to help. There were about 4 people to be called in before me and I was convinced that they should all just let me go first. I was trying to be dignified and gracious, but I really wanted everyone to just get out of my way.

We were finally called back to the Registration Room (about 20-30 minutes after arriving) and I started feeling exceedingly ill. The rocking was being joined by shaking and then there were the sweats and the chills. When a nurse finally got to the room (about 10 minutes later) to register to us, I decided that I might need to throw up and she got me a bucket and I immediately put it to good use. Another thing I learned - when I think that I may throw up, I apparently have about 30 seconds to get someplace appropriate. I guess I did the magic thing, because they decided to let Daniel register me and they whisked me back to a Bed in Curtain Area #6.

I am not sure what I looked like, but I guess it wasn't pretty, because in the short walk to the bed, no less than 5 people stopped us asking if I really could walk and should I be walking and was I going to make it? I hadn't even sat down before they were taking blood, putting in an IV and asking a plethora of questions. On the way back to the bed, the nice young man that was escorting me said that he had an odd question and asked me if I lived in the country. I said yes and thought to myself that there must be a terrible disease going around in the country right now. He then asked if I lived on a certain road, which was indeed the road that I live on. I was now really interested thinking that this disease must be extremely localized. He then responded with "I thought that I knew you from someplace, I passed you today when you were out getting your mail!!" Huh

I rocked in pain and agony and finally a nice female Dr. came in and said that it sounded like a kidney stone to her. A kidney stone. I hadn't thought of that. But aren't kidney stones for big burly men. Wait, my sister has had kidney stones. That doesn't bode well. I decided that I needed to throw up once again - they took longer than 30 seconds getting the bucket, so the trash can had to do. Incidentally, may I just say that my husband is an amazing guy. He was attentive and caring and helpful and loving through the whole ordeal even though he was witness to a lot of ugly stuff!

Right before they were going to administer the pain medication, the pain left as quickly as it came. Granted, I still didn't feel like running a marathon, but it felt so amazing to have the pain gone that I told Daniel I thought that we could go home now. He explained that I was still hooked up to the IV and probably should stay a bit longer. I see it in the movies all the time, you just put your coat on over your hospital gown, pull out the IV and walk out the door. However, since we were already there, we decided to stay for the CT scan and the x-ray. I was pretty sure that they weren't going to find anything, but to my surprise, they found a cyst on my left ovary, numerous kidney stones in both kidneys and a kidney stone in my bladder, which would have been the culprit causing the earlier pain as it was traveling from my kidney to the bladder. How surprising was that.

I was given instructions on collecting the stone for analyzation once it made its exit and we did finally get to go home. I didn't hold much hope that I would actually get the stone, but about 24 hours later, I was able to look at my very own kidney stone. It was teeny tiny and made me a bit irritated that it caused so much pain. I was going to take a picture of it for your viewing pleasure, but I was concerned that I would somehow drop it or lose it and we wouldn't be able to find out what are causing these things. I also had a fleeting fear that it would fall on the floor and one of the cats would get to it first and I would have to explain to my Dr that my cat ate my kidney stone. Strange and disgusting.

On a serious note, throughout our whole 3 hours or so at the ER, there was a much worse situation going on where a young woman had tragically died right after I was brought in and we could basically hear all of the efforts to save her, the telling of the family, the family arriving, etc. I cannot express to you how it hurt my heart to hear the grief that was going on and I just wanted to somehow make it better for them. Please remember them in your prayers.


Melody said...

I am glad that you passed your stone! I heard that those are very painful and I am glad to have never experienced one. You are in my prayers and I will have everyone at church pray for you on Sunday. How did that girl die? I know that I am the horribly morbid person to ask...

David said...

that is so sad about the other woman. I will pray. saw your encouragement to WFW, lets pray fro her tonight as well. Seems God is working!

middle aged blogger said...

Really Jen I'll bet you stayed cause you didn't bring a coat!

What is the story of cyst, and other stones? will they need to be blasted to smitherenes?

So sorry about your pain...hope it's OVER

Love MA B