Monday, November 5, 2012

What was I thinking??

I have had a very "eventful" last couple of weeks.  2 visits to Vanderbilt ER for high blood sugars, vomiting and  dehydration.  1 visit to the local ER via Ambulance from the doctor office for the same thing.  Then between this I talked to my husband about buying a Pampered Chef kit.  He agreed to the mini kit.  Hey! Now this was really big for me to ask for permission first before doing it on my own.  So there has to be some kind of treasure in this.  There simply HAS to be!!  So that next night I sat up late and ordered the kit. Looked around the website a bit and then went to bed.  The next morning started out ok.  I was a little tired but pushed myself through what seemed like a normal day.  I was cranky for sure!!  Instead of finishing lessons with Elizabeth because I couldn't concentrate while the leaf blower was blasting outside our window, I decided to go blow leaves too!  I love to blow leaves.  Instant gratification watching the line of leaves billow across the driveway!!  Mmmm...  Had my phone in my pocket, pandora playing music in my earbuds and everything was great!!  Well, not quite....

I had a phone call come through and I wasn't able to finish speaking the conversation before I needed help.  Looked to my husband sitting down the driveway as he was watching me and he knew I needed help too.  I crumpled toward the ground and he caught me before I landed completely.  The rest of this story is what has been told to me....not because I really remember any of it.

Somehow, Judge and Jacob had gotten me into the house and on the couch.  I do remember my face.  Oh my face was aching and shaking.  Judge said my left side drooped a lot and my words didn't make any sense.  (I know what you are thinking already.  Sounds like a stroke.  Sounds like bell's palsy.  It really sounded like a lot of things that were vaguely familiar as some of these things happened during my stroke 6 years ago.)  Kids each knew what to do on how to get my blood sugar meter, check it, check my pump, check my sensor...everything. They have it all down and work well together.  He said we stayed home for about 20-30 minutes and then we headed to the hospital.  I remember getting to the jeep.  But the next thing I remember again wasn't until later that night in a different city and a different hospital with different people.  Not too many people enjoy visits to our local ER as it has had a lot of bad rumors and probably actual things that have happened.  I, for one, have had not so happy visits.  But then again, I have been there on occasion and knew what I needed got it (bleeding kidney infections) and was able to go home with a happy story to share.  Because everyone has a hospital story.  Especially if they have ever accompanied me to the hospital.

This time was a little bit in fast motion as time was critical.  One thing I DO remember was a med they put in my IV called Dilantin and OMGoodness...I had a severe reaction to that and was screaming from the burning rash I was developing on my backside and all underneath.  Say Ahhhh with Benadryl chasing after it.  Had a CAT scan to rule out any brain bleeds.  All good.  No neurologist on staff at the hospital.  No surprise there really but what surprised my husband was the fact that they could wheel in some sort of computer that a neurologist was able to connect to and observe me.  She said, Can you get her to Vanderbilt?  Sure!  Oh wait, no beds available.  Time to go to Skyline via ambulance.  By this time I had already received lots of Ativan and Valium before getting to the new hospital.  Ugh...skyline and I have a rather unhappy relationship.  I don't agree with many things that they say and/or do.

I woke up that night after getting there somewhere between a garden hose seeking liquid and monkeys picking through my hair.  (Really it was the catheter going in and them putting eeg leads on my head)  But I am correct on how I perceived what was going on.  I know you laughed at this....go ahead and admit it.  I did too.  We had an low disturbance (that's what they called it) eeg for 24 hours.  It had a camera on me and everything. I was in the neurology ICU department so my visitors were scarce, even my husband wasn't allowed in most of the time.  I couldn't eat.  I couldn't hold up my left leg and after the 50th time of about 6 neurologists trying...I still couldn't do it.  My left arm as well.  I couldn't feel my face still and it was like pins and needles most of the time.

Went in to the hospital under the pretenses of having a seizure disorder which bewildered us.  While there, HEY! let's do a full stroke work up.  Everything was coming back pretty normal.  I went home. End of story.
Yeah maybe not in such a fast, easy way.

Yes, I saw about 6 neurologists.  Some that got mad at me because I couldn't remember if I stared when I was in school.  Sorry, 33 different schools from Kindergarten - graduation....ummm, no.  I don't remember.  To psychiatric nursing coming in to bully me for not taking my insulin pump off.  Two thumbs up there! Not!  Finally the last neurologist comes in and actually sits down with us and says...I would like to get records brought in and take a closer look towards MS.  This is something we have had brought to our attention about a year ago so it made sense.  Before leaving another neurologist stopped by and said, "You know, in the back of my head I am thinking this is MS".  Great...

In the meantime since discharge I spend my days either in my bed where it is really warm or on the couch.  I can get in between the two places by using a walker.  I have been out of the house maybe 3 times since then and it is really difficult.  It will take awhile to get an official diagnosis of MS as lots of things have to be done first.  I know a sleep study is coming up soon and then a spinal tap after I see the neurologist as an official in office patient.  Not someone laying in a hospital bed looking like a robot with tubes sticking out of every orifice.

So for several days I felt like there wasn't a tomorrow or a glimmer of hope.  Then one night Jacob helped me with an idea I had to fix a fanny pack to the front of my walker.  A little more independence!  I can now carry my phone, meter and earbuds! woohoo!  I spent well over a week not being able to swallow foods except soft stuff like jell-o and yogurt so I have lived on blueberry yogurt for far too long.  I started eating on Thursday night.  Friends have been kind and brought meals to my family so they can eat and not have that extra worry on them as to who was cooking and what?  Thursday night a meal was brought that I was finally a little better to be able to sit out on the couch and eat it.  This was the first day of us having home health therapy in the home too.  So I was still having a lot of emotions and trying to deal with what was to come.  Since Thursday mealtimes have improved.

Judge and I celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary this past weekend and I was glad I could eat by then so we could enjoy a dinner out together.  Sushi it was.  Still not a lot of chewing involved but bursts of flavor was a good thing.  Oh and Creme Brulee that they brought to us! Yum!!

Home health therapies are coming 4 days a week to help get me moving again and using all functions of my body back to where it was before all of this happened.  Occupational therapy should be here soon...wonder what today will bring?  I know what today has already brought to me.  It has brought more hope and I have felt more promises from God in just the last few hours.  I just got to the living room about an hour ago but before then I had a mini office set up on my bed.  Kids were up, chores done (I think) and everyone ready.  So Jacob and Emily had their school stuff ready and organized for the week.  I finished up Jesse's school work mostly for today and a little language for the rest of the week.  Tomorrow is another day for him.  My sister came by to chat for a few minutes, took a few catalogs and is willing to do an online/catalog party for me! Yay!  Elizabeth and I read through 3 social studies lessons today as well for her schoolwork.  I logged on to her k-12 site and saw that today and tomorrow are vacation days.  Perfect!  We will strive to get caught up on everything we have missed while I have been immobile or in the hospital!

So see...I can get some things done.  I laugh and tell people that for my anniversary my husband bought me balls.  Tennis balls, that is.  For the feet of my walker.  Makes it easier to glide across the wood floor and kitchen.  I was even able to go get my own yogurt after the kids left for dentist appointments! How about that for progress!  Its the little things that get us through.  My Grand Beginnings is my motto right now.  Beginning to relearn things that most take for granted and beginning this Pampered Chef venture.   I do have an open show right now that is closing this week.  Please look through...I am sure there is something you can find for yourself or something to create yummies before the holidays.  Grand Beginnings  If you would like to host a catalog/online show (as I am not vertical or cleared for cooking yet) please let me know.  I know many who enjoy the stoneware and you can get it for 60% off this month when you place your show order.

Enjoy your week and try to find the small things to give thanks to God that you have.