Sunday, June 22, 2008

The WEEK from HELL.....

I was admitted to the Hospital wing of Moffitt around 10:00 pm on Thursday May 22nd and was discharged on Tuesday May 27th. I must admit that much of what I am relating to you now is based on the meticulous note taking by Kate, Mom and Lindsay and what they have since told me, as much of the hospital stay is a blur to me. I remember some things, of course, but I could not tell you on which day a particular thing happened. It never ceases to amaze me that when they would tell me something about the hospital stay, I can really truly say I don't remember that. I was so sick the entire time I was there, that I assume that is our minds way of coping. Who wants to remember this kind of horror story anyway? :) Not me, obviously!! If you have ever been admitted to the hospital for any length of time, there is a "surreal-ness" that least for me it does. The fact the each day is identical to the one before it may contribute to this I think. The only way I really knew there were changes in my day was because a different nurse would come into my room or when there was a "changing of the guard" between Kate, Mom and Lindsay. When nurses, techs, respiratory therapists, doctors, dietary people etc. are marching in and out of your room at all times of the day and night hanging IV bags, or turning off the incessant damn beeping of those machines ( thought I would lose my mind on several occasions), when people are coming in to weigh you, take your temperature and blood pressure, to give you medications, give you shots, and perform all kinds of other necessary "stuff" it makes you lose track of time. Half the time I didn't know if it was night or day. I really won't tell you ALL the things that happened during my stay as alot of it is repetitious. Just know that I have never experienced so much mucous, diarrhea, vomiting and nauseousness, all uncontrollable. I was cleaned up so many times by my family it was ridiculous. I would just get cleaned up from one "incident" when I would literally have another "incident" and we'd have to go through the same thing again. My poor family. I had severe sleep deprivation caused by not being able to sleep without interruptions. So all of this contributed to that surreal feeling I was telling you about. Just a mention about my weight here too. When I was admitted to the hospital on the 22nd I weighed 106.3. I was weighed everyday,, as to keep track of intake and output was important when going through a BMT. I was receiving so many fluids through the central line in my chest that my weight ballooned to 119.2 while I was in the hospital!! We actually did get a good laugh at that as we knew it was not the kind of weight we WANTED to see on me, you could tell it was from all the fluids I was getting. I was blown up like a toes looked like little vienna sausages and I had "cankles" for the 1st time in my life!! My rings were practically swelling over my fingers. Needless to say they cut back on all the fluids I was taking and I've never peed so much in my life as the last 2 days before I was discharged!! I actually went from the 119.2 to 110 in one day, so you do the simple math!! Also during this time, there was awhile when my pills "came out" without being absorbed so all my medications were given IV and they chose to place ANOTHER line in my right arm so I could self administer dilaudid for pain. Thankfully that line was only in for 2 days before I was discharged. To wrap up the in-patient trauma and drama, just know that I was given so many antibiotics, platelets, potassium, anti-fungals, anti -virals, ativan, drugs that stop nausea, magnesium and so many other electrolytes and my regular medications that I was thrilled to be discharged and get back to what had become our regular routine at the apartment. I just know that once again, without my family there with me I would have been so lost. They were my only grip on what sanity I did have left. They cleaned me up, bathed me, practically fed me, spent every night with me so I wouldn't be alone and were my advocates in every way possible. A special shout out to Lindsay as she came every weekend from Gainesville and when she was there it gave Kate and my Mom a little break which they really needed, and she spent her weekend nights on a crappy lounge type chair before we got moved into a room that had a cot in it for "guests"! The bottom line to this in-patient hospital stay was the chemotherapy had given me such mucositis that it had developed "sores" all in my gastrointestinal tract and caused all these problems. Icing like I did prevented the mucositis in my mouth and upper GI tract but there was nothing to do to protect the lower GI system, so there ya go! Thanks chemo for all the good memories!!

No comments: