Back from the hospital.

After 5 long days and sleepless nights I am now back from the North Shore Hospital. Thursday morning Jill called her doctor to get me an appointment since I was still feeling pretty crappy after the episode at the bank Wednesday. I was supposed to be at the clinic by 9:15 but had trouble getting out of bed after passing out on my way to the bathroom and then again on my way back to my room. I just went straight to my bed and laid there for a bit then tried to get dressed but passed out a third time. Jill then called an ambulance since I was pretty much unable to move because I felt so weak and kept passing out.

The ambulance arrived and the paramedics were very efficient and inserted an I.V. drip (and one wasn't too bad looking either haha). They took me to North Shore Hospital emergency and I spent 12 hours there in the care of Dr. Rob and some nurses who had a soccer discussion with me most of the time I felt able to carry conversation. They were able to get one bit of a blood sample from my veins but it was difficult. I tried to eat a banana for lunch but ended up getting sick and vomited it up. My blood pressure was very low, 73 at it's lowest, and my heart rate was 133. I had a little bit of a fever and had "the shakes." I also took in six liters of fluids with no results.

After six different doctors and nurses tried to draw blood and were unsuccessful, they called in a specialist from ICU. The goal now was to get my blood pressure up and heart rate down. First two young nurses told me that they had to put a catheter "It will just feel uncomfortable." That was a lie...SO PAINFUL, considering the infection was urinary/kidney. Once they got that they had to cut my sports bra off so that the ICU specialist could insert a cardio-vascular line just below my right collarbone. A different type of line was put in my left wrist for drawing out blood, I assume, but it looked complicated with all sorts of tubes and there was a local anesthetic used so that it wouldn't hurt as bad as he slowly inserted the huge needle into my wrist. He warned me that I would hate him for the next procedure, the C.V. line. He once again used a local anesthetic and even a little extra to make me a little drowsy while he did it that was about the equivalent of "three stiff Jims." I didn't see how he did the line but after he inserted the line into one of my arteries (I'm pretty sure) they took an x-ray to make sure he didn't puncture anything then stitched it in place.

I was then moved up to ICU where a nurse was constantly in checking machines, I.V., and blood pressure. You have no dignity in hospital. I was so pathetically weak that a nurse came in and took wet cloths and cleaned me up while I was laying on the bed with just a few towels over me. I was making progress up there and after 12 hours in ICU, I was moved down to the ward. I was the youngest in my ward by at least 55 years. In my room the next youngest one to me was Mr. Brown at age 79, almost 80. The next one was Mrs. Harrison at age 88 and then Mrs. Kurry at age 96. Mrs. Kurry was my favorite. She would sit in her bed all day and read romance novels and had this cute high-pitched voice. She was very friendly with everybody and looked great for her age...could've passed off as an 83-yr old with her energy!

Each night sucked. Nurse came to inject more antibiotoics, check my fluids, empty the catheter, and take my blood pressure and repeat at 2 in the morning. This was the routine the next four nights. In the middle of the night the worst sounds were very easy to hear: people caughing, a man vomiting, and news of someone dying...made the hospital very scary. I didn't fall into a good deep sleep until probably 3AM. Right at 8 the nurses came back around to do more evals and breakfast was served at 9. I kept myself occupied by reading, doing crossword puzzles, and watching movies on my laptop.

After six days and five nights I was released from the hospital and on some oral antibiotics for the next three days. In two weeks I will need to give a urine sample and get a scan of my kidneys from a GP. Just have tons of catching up to do now. Missed a total of four days of classes and was just advised to drink lots of water and cranberry juice. No surprise there. Eager to get back into uni! (But will do so with caution...not wanting another one of these episodes so soon!)

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