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What A Way to Start Summer...

  So, two weeks have passed - school's out for the summer! We had a nice, happy out of school party in the park last Thursday. Friday was a laid back day. Saturday turned out to be a wonderful day - I lunched and shopped with sunnybrowneyes . I returned home to discover my dear husband cut down the two maple trees that had been shading my front flower garden! The kids even helped out - my son learned how to split wood with a mallet and wedge, and he also used the chainsaw. My daughter used a bow saw and a hatchet. Wow!!!

But after dinner, the wonderful day fell apart. I felt ill - with increasing abdominal pain as the evening went on. After we went to bed, I had trouble sleeping. The pain increased, and then my mouth felt weird. About 4:00am, I realized that my tongue was swollen. I awoke my DH, and he said we needed go to the emergency room. I just wanted to take a Benadryl and see what happened. He insisted, and so we got ready.

We woke the eldest, and told him we were leaving. Then, we left. Even though there was almost no traffic, it felt like the longest drive in history to me. As we went through intersection after intersection, I felt my tongue slowly getting larger, and I panicked. What if we didn't get there in time? What if I couldn't breathe? I've had asthma long enough that I know how terrifying that possibility is. I've been through situations where I couldn't breathe - and I hope never to do it again.

After an eternity of driving (which in reality was maybe 10 minutes), we arrived at the Kennestone Hospital Emergency room.

My DH dropped me off at the door, and I went to speak (or not speak, as the case may be) to the Entrance Guardians. Okay, so they look like ordinary women who happen to be sitting around typing on their computers. But the Entrance Guardians are really mystical people who determine the Fate of those who arrive in the ER. The Entrance Guardians took one look at me and decided I needed immediate attention, do not pass go, do not collect $200. I went back to the front evaluation room (a place I only heard about in myths), then I was instantly given a room and a doctor. I think I saw the waiting room as we passed by, but I don’t remember much of that time.

The ER doctor tried a trio of drugs - my tongue got a bit larger. Then they tried epinephrine. My tongue stopped getting larger, but refused to get smaller. My blood pressure went bonkers - now they worried about me having a stroke. I got some shots of something for the blood pressure, and finally, finally the swelling in my tongue started to decrease. The ER doctor admitted me to the hospital for observation, and to make sure the swelling went away.

So began my 36 hours on floor 7 in the Green Tower. I had absolutely wonderful nurses and nursing assistants, an interesting room mate, and a plethora of drugs that left me loopy the entire time. Getting vertical was, well, a challenge. I felt like I had climbed Mt. Everest the first time I managed to stand up. I felt extremely exhausted all of Sunday, but I could not get any rest until Sunday night, when my tongue finally was back to its normal size. Then I slept like the dead, waking only when someone wanted something.

Monday morning, I felt horridly filthy, woozy, homesick, and woozy. When the nursing assistant asked me if I wanted to clean up, I almost cried. Then I made up a parody of the Barry Manilow hit, “Feelings”. Only my song was called “Cleaner”. The lyrics go:

Nothing more than
So I don’t feel like a
Stuck in a hospital gown

Wo, oh, oh
My face is much less
Now that I took a sponge bath

Wo, oh, oh
My breathe could knock out a
From Ten Paces away

But now I am much


Okay, it’s not a hit single, but I felt better singing it as I cleaned up in the tiny bathroom.

The rest of Monday was spend in a blur of medications, tests, and getting ready to leave. Finally, around 6:00pm, I took a ride in a wheelchair to the door, where my DH and kids picked me up.

Looking back, the entire visit seems quite surreal, as if it was a story someone told me, not something I lived through personally. In fact, this past week has been surreal, as the prednisone and other meds have worked their way out of my system. It seems like a crappy way to start the summer, but on the up side, it’s gotta get better from here.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 5th, 2011 02:26 pm (UTC)
Like I said before this happened to Tony last fall. Only he got epi right away in the ER and was sent home in a few hours. He also had fine blood pressure which might have been related to his kids in the ER with him and his wife telling him if he died she would kill him.
Jun. 8th, 2011 06:34 pm (UTC)
LOL - I'm glad Tony didn't have to stay overnight for observations.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )


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