Saturday, July 31, 2004

Binge Drinking

I went on a five-day drinking frenzy. I drank gallons upon gallons of water. Why? To pass a 2.1mm Kidney Stone.

It all started early Monday morning when a sharp pain woke me up around 5:45am. Yes, my kidney woke me up at 5:45 am on a day that I didn't have to be to work until 1pm. So already my kidney had declared war.

I writhed in pain on my living room floor armed with a water bottle, my cell phone, a big bowl and some tears. I thought it'd go away. It didn't. I feared appendicitis and so I did the mature thing to do. I called my dad. I woke him up at 5am Seattle time. I cried and in choppy language told him the problem. He told me to wake up Kat. I hung up and called for Kat.

We called Anna, our nurse next door. She poked me and told me that she thought it was kidney stones. Kat and Anna told me I had to go to the ER.

I have a phobia of hospitals, doctors and needles. I had been in this particular ER several times before but this would be the first time I'd be going in for me.

It took two nurses and four stab wounds before they were finally able to get an IV into the crook in my left elbow. I didn't think anything was worth an IV. Morphine made it worth it. And that stuff they gave me to take away my nausea made it worth it. And the extra morphine they gave me made it worth it too. I spent most of the 5 hours I was in the hospital asleep. But when I was awake I used sarcasm for my self-defense.

A few fun moments in the ER:
Number One
doctor: It's probably kidney stones.
nurse: All the women I've talked to who have been through child birth and have had kidney stones all say that kidney stones are more painful.
me: Thanks. That helps.
nurse: (blank stare)
me: It doesn't seem fair. I mean, at least the pains of child birth are rewarded with a cute baby. Kat, after I pass this kidney stone, can we get a puppy? It only seems right.

Number Two
nurse: Oh, my. Have you been given anything for your nausea yet?
me: I have this bucket. (I point to the bowl I brought from home.)
nurse: (laughs) No, I mean medicine. Have they put anything in your IV to make your nausea go away?
me: You can do that?? Bring it.

They said it would take a few hours to a few days to pass the stone, told me a drink a lot of water and said that pain killers would be my best friend. Comforting words.

I went home, drank and drank until our tap begged for mercy, and writhed in pain for three days until Thursday when I went in for a CT scan. It gave us three pieces of vital information. 1) The stone is 2.1mm in size. Just small enough for me to pass on my own. 2) It was stuck on my hip bone and would need a lot more water and time to help it on it's journey. 3) It had friends.

Good news: Today I felt a lot better after around 11am. I was able to eat a salad and two pieces of garlic bread in one sitting. I only had to take pain medicine three times. I was able to sit up more than lie down. I was able to sleep comfortably for the first time since Saturday night.

Benefits of week-long war with kidneys: I now know the ins and outs of daytime television. Bishop said I passed the Mom Test. I now know that I'm not allergic to Lortab or Morphine. I know all about the urinary tract. I know that I can depend on my friends, my ward and my bishop. I also now know that I can survive the at least three others that are on their way...

But where's my puppy??

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