The last two weeks of September were literally two of the worst weeks o f my entire life!
Early morning [3 am] Sunday the 22nd of September I was having a gallbladder attack--Back in February while still pregnant with sweet Porter I found out I have gallstones, but they couldn't really do anything about it--The pain was really bad! Usually when I get them, a couple of Ibuprofen and laying down made it stop, but this time it was just not going away, I told Christian I needed to go to the hospital. I called Taylor and her and Grammy Zan came over and picked up Porter so Christian could take me to Palomar. We got there and they took me back pretty quickly, did blood work, and gave me some pain medicine to help. The labs came back and my liver enzymes were elevated, and they told me I would need my gallbladder out, but since it was an 'elective' surgery and I have Kaiser they couldn't do it there, so they sent me home with a prescription for Vicodin and off we went. Once the medicine they gave me wore off, the pain was back...I knew there was no way I could wait for a referral to surgery so my Dad took me down to Zion.
That night they admitted me to the hospital, and I ended up waiting 2 whole days just to get an MRI. After that they scheduled my surgery, and Wednesday morning I went in to have my gallbladder removed. I went home that evening, and though I was not super comfortable, it felt good to be back in my house with my boys--I was dying there without them!
I continued to get better and more able to move around for the next three days, and was pretty confident that I was in the clear, BUT Sunday came around again, and I was back in pain. The pain felt just like it did when I still had my gallbladder, and I was freaking out. I took two of the Norco they gave me for pain from surgery, tried laying down on the floor, stretching, everything I could possibly think of, but nothing was working, so Christian and I headed to the hospital, and we dropped Porter back off to my Mother in Law.
The next day they attempted to do and ERCP [it has a suppperrrr long name that I can actually tell you if you ask, but I refuse to look it up to spell it out ha] where they put a camera down my throat to see if there was a stone that had fallen out of my gallbladder. That procedure failed miserably...before they were able to see anything not only did I vomit, but there was a perforation in my small bowel. The perforation caused my chest cavity to fill with air, and that air eventually leaked into the soft tissue in my chest and neck which left me swollen, and if you pressed inward on my skin it was squishy (think rice crispies or crinkled wrapping paper). It was not only painful, but made me feel and sound like I was talking through a bubble. However, the way the air dissipated was a good thing--or so they said--if it did not do what it did I would have had to be rushed into emergency surgery. The next day I just sat. They wanted to make sure that the perforation was going to heal itself and that there was not going to be any other issues with that. They hoped that I had passed whatever stone was left so for the next couple of days they watched my liver enzyme tests, still nothing happened, so I had another MRI ( a lot less claustrophobic than the first) and they found the stone! Saturday early morning after they determined that I was healing well, they attempted the ERCP again. I was nervous like you don't even know!! Not only did I remember waking up and vomiting the first time, but I was afraid that there could be a repeat of my previous experience...
I didn't need to worry, though, everything went smoothly and they were able to remove the stone. I spent that night in the hospital, and was finally able to 'eat' clear liquids and try to rest. The rest part was hard; it was my first night with no pain medication, and sleep was really hard. The next morning [Sunday the 30th] the doctor came in and tried to tell me it was going to be another day, BUT I started to cry and he told me that if still felt good after eating lunch I could go. Needless to say I still felt just fine, and they let me leave. The only thing I wanted to do was see my Baby Porter!!
I never want to go back to that place! I spent WAY too long in the hospital for something that should and could have been taken care of in one day! I'm glad it's over, and I SO grateful for the people who came to visit and check on me and just make sure I was okay during the whole thing, and I know now more than I've ever known before THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE HOME!
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