Archive for the ‘health’ Tag

I really don’t recommend it.   2 comments

For those that already know what I’ve been going thru the past month, feel free to skip over this post.

I lost 25 pounds in 2 weeks!  Awesome, right!  No.. as much as I need to & want to lose this weight, I truly don’t recommend the way I went about it.  It all started about a month ago, almost exactly, and it goes like this…

It was Friday, August 10th.  I was at work, and feeling less than wonderful, nauseous, and clutching my side from time to time, yet again.  This has been going on for probably 2 weeks, steady.  Not to mention, the past 6 months or so of it happening on/off.  This particular day, I was really feeling it.  One of my sweet co-workers looked at me, and knew, I wasn’t right.  She told me.. call the doctor.. I’m not leaving your desk until you do.  So, I did.  Being it was a late Friday afternoon, of course I couldn’t get in there, but they told me to call in the morning to let them know I was coming.  I let my friend at work know what they said, and promised her, I would go in, even though I was meant to take my children back to school shopping that weekend.  I figured, get in early, get done, come home, and go shop till we drop for new clothes for my 2 teens that were going on threadbare & ill fitting clothes that needed badly replaced.  I’d been preparing for this trip for a while and I was ready.

Saturday morning, August 11th.  I get to the dr’s office, and the doc examines me and I burst into tears from the pain when he touches my middle.  He said, “you’re going to the ER for imaging, it’s the only way to get quick imaging on the weekend.  I’ll call them to let them know you’re coming.  Can you drive yourself?”  I told him yes, I drove there, and no way was I leaving my car behind.  I get to the ER, which, as usual there is a wait.  They get me back into an exam area and decide to get me into a breezy gown and hook me to an iv, give me pain meds and run some tests.  The tests are not looking good for my gall bladder.  So, they want to run a nuclear test.. which, I can not have pain meds in my system, so they stop giving me anything for awhile & I’m stuck in ER for hours waiting it out.  Finally, I get to nuclear medicine, and they tell me it’s 90 minutes laying on my back on a table.. the first hour just normal type imaging, the last 30 minutes, a drug will be given that will cause my gall bladder to simulate a fatty meal being digested.  I thought I was going to vomit the nothing on my stomach when that 30 minutes took place.  It was bad.  As it turned out, my gall bladder was only working at 11%, and the docs decided, it had to go.  Admitted to the hospital.

Sunday, August 12th.  Met with the surgeon, signed the papers, went to surgery around noon.  Woke up about 2 hours later, and told that my liver didn’t look normal, so while he was in there, he took a couple of biopsies.  “Honestly, your liver looks like cirrhosis of someone who’s been drinking heavily for 40 years”.  Ok, take a step back a moment here.. I’m only 42, and I almost NEVER drink.  Not that I haven’t ever.. but it’s very rare, even in my younger years.. I don’t like getting sick from getting drunk, and it’s happened about 5 or so times, and that’s more than I care to think about.  I can buy a 6 pack of wine coolers and they last me 6-9 months.  Suffice it to say, surgeons have NO bedside manner.  He also wouldn’t explain what any of this meant, only saying that they were waiting on the biopsy, which would be a few days, and that I’d need to see a GI specialist.  He would say no more on the matter of my liver.

I ended up remaining in the hospital until Wednesday, August 15th.  The whole time I was there, I was in PAIN.  If there weren’t drugs in my system, I was miserable.  Sometimes, I was miserable even with the drugs. I couldn’t eat much, I started out on liquids, and moved up to soft foods, but could only manage tiny portions before I felt full, or sick.   I couldn’t lay down from the pain, so I was sitting in bed to sleep, sitting up.  I’d be up out of the bed by 5am, in the chair next to my bed, because it was easier to sit in than the bed.  I’d sit there until 10 or 11pm when I thought maybe I could fall asleep, sitting up in the bed.  As the days dragged on, they poked & prodded me, left me bruised beyond belief, and told me I had to work my lungs with this damn tube to breath in, because of the swelling near my lungs, I was very near pneumonia.  Basically, I was hating life.  I finally was allowed to go home on that Wednesday.. my fever had broke for about 24 hours, and my numbers on my labs were going in the right direction for them to feel it was fine to send me home.  I was given discharge instructions, to make a follow up in a week, but to call or come in if I had excessive pain (which, I was still in excessive pain, so didn’t see the point in that) or had a fever of 100.6 or more.  So, Thursday, 1 day after discharge, I started developing a fever.  The only meds I was given on discharge, was for pain, to last about 5 days, then I should be able to manage with OTC pain meds.  My fever kept going up & down each day.  Friday I called for my follow up on Monday, and told them of my fever which had just reached 100.6.  I was told then, if it goes over 101, call back or come in.  Ok.  It got to 101.5, so I called again Friday night, to the surgeon’s call service, and whoever that yahoo is that answered the phone, better hope I never find out.. or better yet, hope Steve never finds out, or he’s going to need a new asshole.  “You called earlier today, right?.. Well, honestly, you don’t sound distressed or in pain, you’re not talking about nausea, vomiting, and you sound pretty ok.  And I find that temps at home are notoriously wrong.  But if you think you need babysat for your temperature, please let me know and I’ll call the ER to let them know you’re coming in.”  I practically hung up on him, and was in tears.  Steve was livid and was about to call back, and I begged him not to.  I just said, I’d go in on Monday for my follow up, we just had the weekend to deal with, it’d be fine.  I was miserable the entire weekend.  Although, my oldest child drove us around town to do back to school shopping, and she pushed me in a wheelchair that Khol’s had, while the other child pushed the cart around.  We filled up the cart, and rolled all of us into the fitting room, and I was provided a fashion show.  Spent $400 that weekend, but got nearly all they need until winter.

Monday, August 20th.  Arrive at the wound care center in the hospital for my follow up.  In horrible pain, still running a fever.  End up in tears when they touch my middle to look at the bruising that is still covering my entire belly from the bellybutton down and solid purple across the whole thing, like a plum.  Trust me, I don’t think you’ve ever seen a bruise so big, and so ugly.  No, I did not take pictures.. tho I was tempted.  They told me, this is not normal for recovery, and you need more tests.  Unfortunately, the only way to do it, is to go thru the ER again.  UGH!  They were even more busy.  I had my appt. at 1pm, and was in the ER by 2pm.  I wasn’t even called back to a room until around 5pm.  I was taken to nuclear medicine again.. only, no gall bladder left, so that nasty last 30 minute part is a non issue.  Just the fact that I still can’t lay down post-op, and the need me to lay on the table.. that sucked.  I’m finally told I’m being re-admitted for complications.. and they are just waiting for a room for me.. I never got a room until 10pm.  I was in ER for 8 hours.  Awesome.  So, the lovely nurse on my floor comes in to see me around 11pm.  She is having computer problems and trying to get help with that so she can help me.  She is giving them hell (she is in my room on the phone at the roll out computer cart they have) because she wants to be helping ME, not trying to fix a computer.  She decides to just skip the computer mess and just treat me.  She offered me a “benadryl cocktail”, which is just benadryl in your iv.. it was even better than the pain meds they gave me.. I felt it as soon as it hit the iv.. my head felt like it was floating & I just could only describe it as feeling all.. disconnected.  It also made my mouth go really dry, and I got a bit nauseous from it, but then, I was knocked it. Over the next couple of days, I was given more iv antibiotics, lots of blood work, pain meds, anti nausea meds, instructions to continue my breathing exercises as my lungs are still not fully working and they have to keep putting me on oxygen.  They really don’t want another complication of pneumonia, and honestly, neither did I, so I tried my best to keep breathing, even tho it hurt like a sunuvabitch.  I was discharged again, on Wednesday, August 22, which also happened to be the first day of school for my girls.    They were already out of school by the time I was discharged and home.  Well, not exactly home.. at a friend’s house, because it was the first day of school, and they BOTH forgot their house keys.  I was discharged with similar instructions as the first time, but provided not only pain meds (because I was obviously still in pain, and would be out that day of any kind of pain meds they’d given me previously), AND an antibiotic.  This finally did the trick.  No more fevers.  I saw the wound care center on Thursday, August 30th, and they said after the holiday weekend & the follow up with my GI, I could go back to work.  I finally got to meet with the GI on Sept. 4th, and resumed work, Wednesday, Sept. 5th.

Over the course of the last 2 weeks of being re-admitted, and cleared for work, I’ve had very little appetite.. I fill up fast, or still get nauseous from eating, or what I do eat,  just runs right thru me.  Hence, the losing of 25 pounds, seemingly effortlessly.  On top of all of that, I started having pain in my left leg &  hip just days prior to returning to work.  I ended up making an appointment with my chiropractor who is just a couple miles from my job, on my first day back to work.  From being laid up and the positions I’ve had to be in, my hip and locked up with bursitis.  It hurts immensely.  I’ve seen the chiro twice now, and she wants to see me at least 2 times in the next week as well.  Ice ice ice, and stretch it out as I can.  I am almost walking ok again, with some pain still, but not excessive as it was.  I can come down the stairs semi-normally, but I can not go up them normally with both feet.. I have to go up on the right, and drag the left up.  I just can’t put my full weight on my left leg to push myself up the stairs, or my leg tries to buckle out from under me.

I will say, I’m very glad to be back to work.  I missed being there, and around the people there.  I HATE the ride to & from work, especially with my hip right now, making the long time in the car or truck unbearable.  The first night coming home was almost 2 hours in the car, and at an hour & 15 minutes in, tears were welling up in my eyes from the pain of not being up to move.  I hope next week goes better.

I see my general doctor on Monday.  Should be an interesting visit.. she hasn’t seen me since before all this mess happened.  When I went to my dr’s office the day before I was admitted to the hospital, she wasn’t in, I saw the dr. that was there for that day for walk ins.   I know that 1)I’ve lost a significant amount of weight in a short time (and this was absolutely the worst way of it happening), and 2) my blood sugars have continued to go DOWN.  Which, is kinda good.. but it’s mostly because I can barely eat.  I don’t know about my blood pressure.. it seems to be low whenever anyone else has checked it the past few weeks.. even on days when I haven’t taken my blood pressure meds.  Some things may be changing with this visit.  One things for sure, I’m making changes for my life.  I do not want to have to ever go back in the hospital again.  With the diagnosis on my liver, I’ll be eating better, getting more exercise, losing weight, and never drinking again (which was never an issue for me in the first place).  This is the new me.

 

Posted September 9, 2012 by Meg's Simple Life in life in general

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That’s the way things go   2 comments

Time for another “day in the life” post.  I tend to run many days together, so this will likely be more of the same!

Alex has had a couple of beginner cake decorating classes.  She has some cupcakes in the fridge to frost (which, I wish she would frost so we could NOM on them!), and a cake she made at the previous class (which is more than gone.)  Here’s a sample of what she’s done so far.

First decorated cake.

Not a masterpiece, but it’s all about learning technique, how to hold the bag- angle & pressure.  It’s a work in progress and she’s been pretty excited about learning how to make the flowers, but that’s not until the 2nd session later in July.

In other news, we got some new living room furniture.  Yay for sales!  Boo for making payments.  Hope to pay it off fast tho.  The cats have already laid claim to the new stuff.  It’s soooo comfy!

Tiger’s Loveseat

Patches’ Couch

4 of 5 kitties approve.

The furniture is a nice soft microfiber, and is a chocolate brown color.  Needless to say, it’s going to require a bit of vacuuming to keep it that way.  Patches sheds. A LOT.

To update on my girls-

Alex is doing very well since she had her follow up with the GI doc, and is following the restrictive diet (much to her displeasure) and taking her meds.  She’s had no complications from the esophogitis, and that is a big PLUS in the happy column for me.  She’s hoping the diet is temporary, until they find out what caused the allergy specifically.  She hates not being able to have a lot of her favorites, like BBQ chicken or hot wings.

Marissa is feeling better too.  Her headache has pretty much gone.  The doctor recommended that she get better sleeping patterns / routine, and add more good foods, less processed foods, to her diet, as well as some B2 daily.  Still no MRI, the insurance doesn’t feel it’s justified, so they won’t cover it.  I will roll with that for now, as long as she’s not getting worse & seems to be improving.  She still has bad flareups with her dermatitis, but there’s not much we can do about that, but use the ointment as it happens.  The only other thing would be the pain she experiences in her wrists.. I may want to have that looked at as well, because if it’s something like arthritis, we should find out now.  Mom had arthritis from the time she was even younger than Marissa, so I know it’s a possibility.

Probably, the last thing is something that has made the news this week.  What a storm we had here Friday night!  It got to 105 degrees here, with heat index making it feel like 115.  Then came the storm.  The news called it a derecho.  It knocked out power to so many across several states on the east coast.  Here’s a few pictures from around our neighborhood, the day after…

Timber! This large tree was at the other end of my street.

Tree caught in wires 1 street over from my house, caused the allergist to be closed due to no power. Sorry Alex, no shots today.

Also 1 street over, the other direction. This one was pretty bad, they had to rope it off due to wires near the road.

1 corner down & across from me, they lost a few large branches.

That was just a sample of 5th, 6th, and 7th ave, and I am on 6th.  There was a lot more damage than this, and there are many without power right now.  It could be days, maybe even a week, before all is restored.  Our heat advisory is not done yet either.  We have 1 or 2 more days that it’s expected to be in the high 90’s to near 100 degrees.  I am so so grateful that we haven’t lost power.  I hope that others are doing well in this disaster, and that the restoration goes quickly so people can have relief.

 

I was playing with my settings today, added some new stuff on the sidebar (blogroll, goodreads, twitter), and changed the theme.  Let me know what you think, or if you have suggestions to make it look better!

Me & my girls   Leave a comment

Thought it was about time to do an update, kind of like, the state of our house.  Where to begin..

Alex had her scopes done on May 29th, and we had a follow up for her on June 7th.  She has eosinophilic esophagitis, an allergic inflammatory condition of the esophagus.  She has to take 2 prescribed prilosec a day, and no spicy foods, no acidic foods or drinks, and no soda, and remain low lactose.  She has to have another endoscope in 3 months, and a follow up after that, and then we find out if any of that helped or not.  If not, she will be sent to another specialist to determine *what* is causing the allergy in her esophagus.  At least we know that it’s not “in her head” or maybe “stress” causing her pain.  This is real.  And I feel vindicated in knowing something was going on, and didn’t give up, looking for a diagnosis.

Marissa saw the neurologist today.  She’s fine.. other than the headache that won’t leave her for over a month now.  They don’t feel it’s anything with her brain, she tested fine today with the exam.  They are going to see if the insurance will cover an MRI, just to have a look.. but doubt they will find anything.  In the mean time, we are to encourage a more set bedtime / awake time, and have more healthy foods / less processed foods, and add some vitamin B2.  See them again in 6 weeks.

MY follow up was GREAT!  My A1C went from 7.7  last visit (3 months ago), to 6.6!  My cholesterol & triglycerides are better than they’ve ever been, and I’d lost 5 pounds since last visit (which, I gain & lose the same 5 pounds any given day, but I’ll take it!).  My blood pressure was great, pulse was fine, liver looked improved and the doctor is overall pleased with me today.  More exercise is all she says.. but she’s always told me this.  I’m trying.. as Steve says, “you’re the most trying person I know..”  ha ha.

We got new living room furniture this weekend.  It was a random, hey, they’re having an awesome sale, let’s check it out, and bring it home today kind of thing.  I love it!  What I don’t love, is how big the old sectional is, and how small the other living room is to fit it in.  Or, not fit.. whichever way you want to look at it.  It’s there, for now.  It needs cleaning, badly.  UGH.  5 cats on it all the time, and years of abuse- it’s rough right now.  At least it’s in better shape than what was in the other room.. that was a couch that all the springs had sprung and you’d sink to the floor when you sat on it.

Anyways, that’s about it.  We are sore from the furniture moving this weekend,  I think I hear my chiropractor calling.

Farewell May   2 comments

T- 3 days and counting till PROM.  I think I’m just as excited about getting the mani/pedi Friday night!  Hard to tell if Alex is excited or not, but I plan to take some pics after she’s looking like a total princess.

Marissa is NOT getting better like I thought.  The redness / infection was taken care of by the z-pack, but she still has the headache that won’t quit for 2 weeks now.  Took her to her doctor’s office on Tuesday, where they prescribed a “different class of drug” than the imitrex, but designed to do the same thing, effectively get rid of it.  It has not worked yet.  We go back Friday afternoon for a follow up, and with her not progressing, they will likely be ordering imaging.

My chiropractor visit will get pushed back again, I just don’t have time to leave work for 60-90 minutes this week, what with having to take Marissa to the doctor twice.  I’m continuing on with the stretching she asked me to do, and while the reps aren’t improving, my shoulder is acting up less, tho there is still some pain.

I can’t believe this is pretty much, the last week of school for my girls.  The next 2 weeks after this is exams, and then they are done.

I should be watching IDOL right now, but Marissa put on Dr. Who on Netflix.. she is a new fan (as of this week) and it’s all she’s done while she’s been home this week.  Yay for DVR’s and I’ll be watching IDOL as soon as she’s done with the current episode she’s on.

Not much else to report on, but just felt like updating on the kiddos.  June needs to just get here and get this month over with already.  Hard to believe this June, Steve & I will be married for 23 years!

June 17, 1989.

Posted May 9, 2012 by Meg's Simple Life in life in general, prom

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Randomocity   2 comments

So, I haven’t written about anything on here, since the end of January.  I’ve thought about it, but then either time passes me by & I lose the motivation, or I simply have nothing really interesting to say.  I guess for now, I’ll try to recap stuff that’s been happening around here.

Alex is still suffering from random stomach pains, and all of her lab work has come up “in the normal range”, so we are proceeding with giving a 17 year old, a colonoscopy & an endoscopy.  Those will occur on the last day of school, the day after Memorial Day.  She is not so very thrilled with the idea of it all.  Best part, because she’s not 18, we have to see a pediatric specialist, and the closest one to us, is out of D.C., about 2 hours away.  Yay.

Marissa had allergy testing done recently, and she is the total opposite of her sister.  Where Alex is allergic to.. life? Marissa is allergic to next to nothing.  Dust mites, cockroach dust, bermuda grass, and plant mold from corn.  So pretty much, the main thing here, is the dust mites.  She is pretty damn lucky.  She did just have something wrong with her.. a migraine headache that would give her no peace for a good week.. so I took her to urgent care and they found that her ear & throat were red, and her sinuses were packed tight.  She earned a z pack, and imitrex.  That was on Thursday last week, and she is doing much better.

Me, well, ever since our tv died in January, I’ve had growing pain in my shoulder. (as a result of moving tv’s in & out of the house, that weighed, oh, probably 9000000000 pounds or so.)  So much so, that I started seeing my chiropractor again.  No matter what she does, the pain keeps coming back.  Right now, my neck is so sore between my neck & shoulder, that I can barely turn my head.  I was to see her this past Thursday, but she had a family emergency, so had to reschedule.  I’ll see her this Thursday instead.  I’ve been going at least once a week for the past 2 months.  She gave me some elastic type band to work on strengthening exercises for my shoulders & upper back, but I still can only seem to do about 5 reps of the 2 different types.  It’s only been about a week, but still, it’s difficult.  She said they were to be “pain free reps”, but how is it to be pain free, if I’m struggling with pain as it is?

Steve’s Aunt Dawn lost her battle with cancer last month.  She was only 48.  Cancer sucks ya’ll.

Our 5 cats continue to plot my demise, under the pretense of showing me affection.  They are trying their best not to get caught with their suspicious behavior of winding through my feet as I descend the stairs with full hands & limited vision from whatever I happen to be carrying at the time.  Adorable they may be, do not underestimate them!

We had an awesome view of the space shuttle as it made the final trip around D.C., from our office that sits across from the Dulles airport.  It was an amazing sight.  I’ve watched a few take-offs, from television, but this was the first time I’ve seen one like this.  Even though it was being carried, to see it in the air, was still quite wonderful.  I hope that sometime in the future, we are able to continue our space program.  Many children grow up dreaming to be astronauts someday, and it would be sad to lose that dream forever.

Could this post be any more random?  Let me think on that a moment..

My children have never seen Wayne’s World.  wow..

I have been reading a lot lately.  And Marissa & I share most of the same books.  LOVED The Hunger Games.  Have been reading a few random “Dark-Hunter” books from Sherrilyn Kenyon.  THOSE are um.. too adult for an almost 15 year old.  Just saying, glad I read it first, before she did.  I obtained most of the Harry Potter books from my dad when we went home last month, and will eventually, finally, get to read them.  Of course, I have several others in que.  And.. I just may have to succumb to the idea of reading 50 shades of gray.  The more I hear of it, the more intrigued I am.  And I really haven’t heard that much, other than it’s pretty much adult material, it was apparently based on Twilight fan fiction.  I finished reading “Let’s Pretend this Never Happened, a mostly true memoir”, by Jenny Lawson, aka The Bloggess.  I am thrilled to find out, she is touring to a city within an hour of here, and I *will* get to go!  May 19th woohoo! I read 90% of the book out loud to my family, while we were driving to & from Pennsylvania.  I was feeling pretty hoarse afterwards!  But, the family was enjoying it so much, they kept pushing me to read more & more of it, praising the way I read.  Steve said I should do audiobooks..lol.  Whatever!

Alex has her junior prom next weekend.  She is going to look so lovely.  And she is going to get her first mani/pedi Friday night.  She picked out her prom dress after a blitz of the mall & ransacking Deb Shop.

Image

The chosen dress, bought while they were closing the gates in the mall.

My computer has been fubar ever since I tried to do some maintenance on it myself.  I was *only* trying to make room on my hard drive, that was too stuffed to do anything.  Yea.  Somehow, I deleted important stuff, and it took many system restores later to get it semi right. (I still get occasional crashes.) But, as a side effect, it’s more bitchy than normal, so that means I am as well.  Probably in July, I’m getting a new computer.  Just because, I’m tired of trying to fix this one.  Just start over, and be done with it.  I need to save pictures, music, and videos.. the rest, I really don’t care if it takes me a month to reinstall shit, it will just be done, and done right, with no short cuts.

That’s pretty much it for now.  Oh yea, we have like, 2 weekends to get our living room cleaned out & the floor installed, because my inlaws will be here for Memorial weekend.  I’m happy that they are coming, but the time crunch is on.  And with Prom next weekend, and going to see Jenny Lawson the weekend after, it should make for some interesting time crunching to get the floor done!

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