Feeling Better 

At last I have some answers. I’ve been dealing with this for so long but the corner has finally been turned and now I can truly begin to heal, or so I surely hope I can!

My initial surgery was over a month ago and I’ve been so terribly ill since then. Many trips back and forth to the hospital as well as Pablo, the drain placed 26 days ago. Pablo was initially working well, but started malfunctioning. I began flushing him a bit more frequently. I continued having fevers and feeling terribly lightheaded and detached from the world. I tried my best to eat and not I felt the same.hing had flavor. I had 3 antibiotics.  My labs still looked the same and still showed the abscess was much smaller but remained. From a 7 cm to a 3 cm abscessed area which is an improvement for sure, but finding out that I can help this to go away faster?  What a golden opportunity to be proactive in my healthcare.

I have never in my life felt so sick.  I have never felt like I would never get my energy back or be able to once again go for a walk without passing out.  I have made one walk since my surgery.  It was a the only day I felt good.  I walked 4 houses up the street and back again.  It was to my dad’s house.  He didn’t answer the door either.  Hubs and I didn’t have our mobile phones either to give him a call, so we walked back down.  The next day, I felt just as terrible as I had previously and remained that way until yesterday.  I do listen and I do everything I’m told to do.  I’m a very good patient.  I know what I have to do and I do it.

After being in the nursing field for 29 years, I should know a thing or two about how to get better, but this has been the absolute lowest point of my existence.  Honestly, I was ready to seek healthcare elsewhere if it weren’t for Dr. Burke finally giving me the answers I was seeking on Thursday.  Hubs took me to my sinogram, where dye is placed into the drain and then x-rayed for drain placement and to see how much fluid is still present.  It’s really very cool.  What we were shown is that although my abscess is much smaller, the abscess is made up of pancreatic enzymes which is trying to eat my body instead of processing food because of where it has leaked to.  There is a small pathway which has formed which we need to help seal up.  We can do this by flushing and creating the proper pressure in there, a neutral pressure, allowing the nasty, thick drainage from the pancreas to drain.  If I gavage it with the saline 5 or 6 times a day, it will allow the thick drainage to flow more freely and therefore, it will be released more easily.

Guess what!  It’s been working great!  No more fevers, and I feel much improved.  I sure won’t be running any marathons.  In fact, I’ll have to work up to walking any great length again, but I’m getting there.  And I’m planning on more writing.  I’m able to focus a little more clearly already.  Just think, maybe, just maybe, I might get a little bit of my summer after all! Wouldn’t that just be awesome!  I know the Hubs, the kids and I would be so thrilled.  Thank you for all the prayers and good wishes.  Keep them coming.  You have no idea how much they mean to me.  Your kind thoughts are so wonderful.  They truly mean so much to me.  I can’t thank you enough for caring about little old me!

I Should Be Sleeping, But…

Sleep. I do a great deal of that these days. Yes, I feel guilty about it at times, but I really need sleep. If I’m going to gain strength again, I need several things with sleep being one of those things.  I also, ironically, need, exercise which isn’t happening as I had hoped it would, but I’m so tired  lately. I try so hard to do everything right. 

    They tell me work on getting your appetite back. Work on exercise. How does one do this when feeling worse than they did after surgery? My labs revealed that I still have an infection. In fact, my labs haven’t changed in 3 weeks and 3 types of antibiotics later, something should improve. Each time I believe I’m getting better, it seems like another little bump in the road happens. I’ll get there though, someday. 

    I have another doctor’s appointment today. I actually will be seeing my buddies in interventional radiology. This is the doctor that placed my drain over 3 weeks ago. Wow! That’s a long time for a drain! All I can do is take things one day at a time. I pray, a lot. I pray that today, these doctors listen to me, refer me to infectious disease doctor who might get rid of the infection once and for all. I pray for continued patience getting through all this. I pray for strength. I will conquer this. I will be me again. Someday, I will be me again. I will never again take my health for granted either. If this has been anything, it has taught me to be patient, to trust God’s timing and to speak up for myself, especially when no one wants to hear me. Today is a new day full of new promises. Perhaps today is the day life will turn around. I’m an optimist so today I choose to believe good things will happen. 

    Blessings and love to you, my friends! 

    Deirdre xx

    Just Done with the ER

    When you go to the ER and you have 20 years of experience as an RN, wouldn’t you think just perhaps, someone, anyone, might listen to the reason you’ve come in! Logical? Yes. Does it happen? Not precisely. 

    So, I have a drain in my belly, I’ve named it Pablo. Pablo has been doing a great job of draining the nasty infection out. You see, after my complex abdominal surgery, I got a fun and exciting 7 cm pocket of infection. Yep! Nothing like a little nastiness and 3 different antibiotics, placement of a drain and another hospitalization to lift your spirits! But that’s been my luck this last month.

    Yesterday, I flushed my buddy, Pablo, with 30 ml of saline. The reason? Well, always flush it with 10ml but I noticed it wasn’t flushing easily and guess what? Nothing was coming out! What a pain!

    After the usual time given before the next flush, it still hadn’t any output. Not good. So not good because it also was hurting a ton more! Something was wrong. We called the intervetional radiology department who told us to go into the Damn ER! Yuck!

    So, my labs are no different. My WBC is still 18.2 which is high after 3 antibiotics. I’m running another low grade temp too. My platelets are 511 which is high. They did another CT scan to check placement but didn’t touch the actual problem!! The actual drain going inside my body which isn’t working! Does anyone listen? Really hear me?

    The answer is no. All that happened in my long night at the ER IS this. More bills for me, everything is “okay” even though the infection is still there. Oh and the infected goo coming around my tube is also “normal”. And unless my temp which happens every day, gets above 101, no one actually cares. So here I am continuing to know that something is wrong but no one knows or actually gives a cheap until I guess I’m much closer to death’s door! Okay, maybe not quite that bad, but I’m beginning to feel that way! 

    I’m tough and I’ll get through this, but honestly, what happened to doctors listening to you? My dad is a retired doctor and he’s had it with these doctors taking care of me. He just may have to get involved in order to get me fixed up! I’m okay with that. We shall see what happens tomorrow. One day at a time and still the stupid Norco for the pain. If I didn’t have my husband I’m telling you, I’d be off my Damn rocker by now!

    Alone on My Island

    For the first time in my life, I find writing daunting to me. I feel as though I’ve been placed upon a desserted island and I’ll never be rescued. It isn’t that the thoughts aren’t in my head as much as it is the sheer effort of putting it into writing at the moment that is my problem.

    I honestly would not wish my last month on anyone.  I’m so tired and each time I think I’m making progress, I’m somehow shut down yet again. Complications arise. It will end. I know it will. But just for today, I’d like to be normal again. Just now, my island is filled with pain, loneliness and some boredom. I feel very isolated which is to be expected, but it has been so long.

    My Hubs has taken me out for a drive, but I am exhausted after returning, unable to do much of anything only to return to my island. The simplest things seem so difficult and take so much time to  recover from.  I took my first walk down the street. I made it 4 houses and back. I felt completely done. I was lightheaded yet so proud of my accomplishment. The next day, I was useless once again.

    This makes me champion for all those who live like this everyday. They make no big deal over living peacefully in this alternate universe of pain and ultimate boredom. They try to keep busy and interested in the world around them. I know I try, but it is so hard sometimes. I’ve shed so many years just wondering if there is an end to this hell. Of I can escape this, my own private island of hell. Ever? For each positive step forward, it seems to take me back 2 sometimes 3. I feel like one of the lost souls on Gilligan’s Island. My problem is that I was shipwrecked alone. I’m trying my best to remain positive. Perhaps this week will bring positive things. This weekend, well, it’s not over yet.

    I Wish the World Knew Patience

    It’s the middle of the night.  I should be asleep, but alas, I’m in my peaceful time.  It’s my time of night when the house is asleep, but here I am, awake and full of “thinks”.

    I’ve been thinking about what this world needs and what I would teach the world if given the opportunity.  I’ve thought about it for so long, I should have posted this several hours ago, but, I didn’t yet have the words.

    Remember the old Coke commercial?   I’d like to give the world a Coke? Well, I’d like to give the world patience.  I’ve had that old commercial running on a loop in my head since I decided that patience is what I’d give to the world.  It’s a good thing I always liked that song.  Regardless, patience is something this world needs.  It’s something we could all use more of.

    I have great patience when it comes to some things, but not when it comes to myself.  I’ve never been as ill as I have this last month.  Going into my surgery, I thought, or rather, I presumed, everything would go according to plan because it always had.  I’m young enough, okay, I’m in my mid-forties, I’m healthy, or I was leading up to the surgery.  Nothing would go wrong.  How wrong I was.  Everything but the initial surgery went wrong.  I have had to learn patience from a new perspective.  I still await being myself.  It will be here, eventually.

    As things are, I’m stuck at home most of the time.  I have such a renewed sense of freedom and exhilaration when I leave my house and go to an appointment, or a drive in the car.  It takes so little now to make me happy.

    Why have we all forgotten how to be patient?  I look at my family.  None of them are patient.  They have lived in this world that wants and expects everything now.  The current generation really want instant gratification.  They never seemed to have any patience to begin with.  Even playing games, they want success now.

    I have always been somewhat patient with people, but I have had learn extreme patience with myself.  It hasn’t been easy to do.  In my current state, I am exhausted, have pain and a drain stuck in my abdomen.  It’s only a temporary state.  I know that, yet it often feels like forever.

    I miss my mom.  It’s been 7 long months and yet it seems like yesterday.  I just want to pick up the phone and call her, but I can’t.  Again, I have to be patient with myself.  I have cried realizing that mom can’t help me through this from the physical aspect of things.  I know she is in heaven and that she’s watching out for me.

    My family has to be patient with me as I heal.  I have to be patient with myself, too.   Another week will go by.  I will get through it.  If’s a better place than where I was one week ago.  If only the world could see and learn patience.

    Imagine what would happen to this world if the governments were patient and would actually think before acting like they do.  Imagine a more thoughtful, peaceful world.  If you can, just for a moment.   I can. Can you?

    This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday Post.  Our host this week, the ever lovely, Kristi from www.findingninee.com

    simple ftsf