This has been an unusual few days, even for us. Our normal chaos was rudely interrupted by several trips to the ER, a short hospital stay, two trips to urgent care, and multiple doctor visits. I have had more conversations about bodily functions than I care to count. We have had sleepless nights, fevers, chills, rashes, pinched nerves, infections, and kidney stones. My medicine cabinet could stock a small pharmacy, and because I’m the momma, I manage it all.
It all started two weeks ago, when I started having upper abdominal pain. I tried to ignore it. Then Bea, my young adult daughter, started having severe pain and unusual symptoms. That was our first ER trip. She ended up having a UTI.
Over the next couple of days, my symptoms got worse. I became lethargic and the pain started radiating to other parts of my body. I had a difficult time eating or drinking anything. I made an appointment to see my doctor, but the earliest available was two days out. That evening, I developed a fever and chills and began having pulsating pain in my lower right abdomen. That made me angry because I know those symptoms always need to be checked for appendicitis. That was my second trip to the ER. I HATE going to the ER. Nine hours later, I was diagnosed with a kidney stone, a UTI, and an embarrassing case of constipation. (TMI?)
I rested the best I could most of the next day. By evening, I was still having trouble consuming anything and the fever was back accompanied by a headache. I was still backed up, so I took my meds along with a laxative, and went to bed. Stupid, I know. By midnight, I woke up with horrible chills and stomach pains. Duh, right? The laxative had kicked in. Anyway, I took care of business, wrapped myself in blankets, and went back to bed.
At three AM, I woke up with whole body tremors, terrible pain in my right foot, and a fever. I could not stop shaking. I woke Mr. M, and we headed back to the ER. By the time I got there, I could barely stand. They wheeled me back to a room and hooked me to monitors and an IV. My blood pressure was dangerously low, my pulse was really high and I had a low grade fever. The doctor came in and immediately admitted me for observation. It took two bags of IV fluid to get my body to stabilize. I spent the day resting in my peaceful hospital bed. The nurses would come in and apologize for it being a noisy and bustling place to rest and I would laugh at them. I don’t know how to rest in quiet. By the evening, I was feeling much better and all of my tests came back OK, so I was discharged. Apparently, I had somehow pinched a nerve in my right foot, but otherwise there were no new diagnoses.
The next afternoon, I received a phone call from Marie’s school. She was in a lot of pain and needed to go home. I picked her up, gave her some Motrin and watched her symptoms. The next day, when she was still in pain, I took her to Urgent Care, where we discovered that Marie had a large and intense Candida rash from the prophylactic antibiotic she takes. Thankful that it was nothing more serious, we went home and I planned for a nice, peaceful weekend where we had no plans and everyone could recuperate. In the mean time, Bea had developed a Candida infection as well.
I know that making plans rarely works out for me. I don’t know why I even try. At midnight, Jimmy had a nightmare and crawled into our bed. At three, Mike came in to our room complaining of horrible abdominal pain. I dragged myself out of bed and went to get him Motrin. By the time I got downstairs, Mike was doubled over and moaning in pain. I did a quick check of his symptoms, and when he pointed to his lower right side, I cursed under my breath and ran to get dressed. We headed to the hospital; by the time we got there, Mike was incoherent. A police officer helped me get Mike into a wheel chair, and we rushed him back into the ER. Mike has no recollection of the events that happened over the next hour or so. The doctor gave him several doses of pain meds before Mike was even able to talk. The nurses were taking bets over what could possibly be causing my boy so much pain. The tests came back — a kidney stone. The male nurse had won the bet. The doctor was fairly certain that Mike would be able to pass the stone on his own, so we were sent home with several prescriptions and instructions to see the urologist in two days.
The next day was Sunday, and for the first time in over a week, everyone seemed to be stable. I took the day to relax a bit and catch up on some of the important things I had missed during the week. SJ’s birthday was coming up and I needed to prepare for that. I finished my course of antibiotics and made sure that Mike and Marie were taking the appropriate meds all day. Sunday was nice.
Monday morning, I woke up determined to write a blog post, being that I hadn’t had a chance to write for over a week. I had missed the first week of my Blogging 201 class and my first week of Writing 101. I so badly wanted to catch up, but as I sat at my computer, my hands started to burn and tingle. Then they started to itch. I watched hives develop first on my hands and then they spread over my entire body. I hurried to take Zyrtec and Benadryl, but it didn’t help. Nothing I did calmed the reaction; thankfully, it hadn’t spread to my tongue or throat. I managed to make it through the day; I even took Mike to his urology appointment, though I scratched the whole time. That night was miserable. The hives grew into huge, swollen welts that stung and itched. I took Benadryl around the clock, but was hardly able to sleep.
Yesterday morning, I went to my appointment with the police department to set up a safety plan for Lu. I managed to keep the scratching to a minimum and hid most of the welts under a hooded sweatshirt so nobody could see the rash. As soon as the appointment was over, I went straight to urgent care. It’s not usually a good sign when the urgent care doctor gasps when he looks at you, is it? Anyway, the doctor thinks I’m allergic to the antibiotic I was on. Unfortunately, the antibiotic stays in your system for up to two weeks after you finish the course. The doctor gave me a steroid shot, put me on a steroid burst, and told me to keep taking both the Zyrtec and Benadryl. He gave me strict instructions to head to the ER if my throat started to react.
It took all day before I saw or felt any improvement, but it was SJ’s sixth birthday, so I had no time to sulk. This house is always bustling. I can’t stay down for long. We celebrated SJ last night. We enjoyed watching him play with his birthday presents. But as soon as it was time for him to go to bed, I went to bed too. It took a while for the itching to calm down enough for me to sleep, but at least I got to rest.
This morning, my hives were much lighter. Thankfully, the steroid and Benadryl combination finally kicked in. Unfortunately, I woke up with a migraine, but I would take a migraine any day over full body hives. I had a follow up appointment with my doctor today. She just shook her head when she heard my story. I wonder what she would think if I told her the whole thing? Life is an adventure, isn’t it? I love my big family life.