So I haven’t posted anything in a little while – about a month now. I think some priorities have been changed in this time, and i’ve put blogging down a few slots on my to-do list, just a bit (even though I have 40 draft posts waiting to be built – some of which are nearly finished and ready to share).
This past week has been a strange one. Without going into length and detail about everything single thing, I believe I have been suffering from some kind of bladder infection that had been getting worse and worse, each day, starting last Monday. Or to put it into better words, the beginning of a week that would hit me hard. Who knows, this might be something that has been building up over a very long period of time.
It was strange. It felt like I didn’t have muscle control over urination. I had to consciously squeeze and “hold in” as best I could all the time, throughout all the awake day. I never wet myself (thankfully) but over a couple of days, the sensation and ‘urge to wee’ became worse and worse. I’d relieve myself, but almost instantaneously, i’d feel like i’d need to go once again. This is when the burning and tingling began to become apparent.
The night time, for some strange and unknown reason, was the worst time of day for this problem I was facing. The morning (or afternoon depending on when I awake) was bearable and not so bad – But at night I would feel really uncomfortable, because the “busting/need-to-go” wouldn’t go away. It was so hard to get to sleep, and as it turned out, I couldn’t really lay flat or on my belly or on my side’s (because of the feeling of pressure). Thursday night was pretty darn bad. I had hot flushes and the burning in my bladder and urinary tract down stairs was unbearable. I sat half up and half down and tried to get to sleep. 3 hours of sleep that night… So Friday, I did my best to attend school in the morning (because i’ve so many sick days off already, I felt like I really needed to make an appearance even though I wasn’t well), and then went home to get ready for a doctors appointment in the afternoon. The doctor didn’t say much, but did get me to give a urine sample. So he said the results would be in next week, on Monday or Tuesday, maybe even Wednesday – so an appointment was made for Wednesday. That night was absolutely horrible. A nightmare that I didn’t expect to come. I felt so full and had such a feeling of urgency, it felt like I hadn’t been to the toilet for the entire day even though I had been countless times. It really was so incredibly hard to deal with, physically and mentally. That night I managed to get to sleep, mainly after 3/4am. I suffered from the sweats and shivers – I was shaking and couldn’t find comfort. So I woke Mum up and discussed what help I could get “now” rather than having to wait another 5 days for results, etc. Given that each day, from Monday to Friday, my problems were getting worse double-fold, every day, and given that I was at a point of desperation on that 5th day, I couldn’t think or imagine how just one more nightmare-night might be like, let alone 5 more nights. Mum and I decided that we would visit the hospital when we got up, that Saturday.
I’ve never been to hospital before (except for when I was a baby getting my tonsils removed and also about 8 years ago when I went to hospital many times to visit my Pop – dying from a golden staph infection). I fear even the thought of “hospital”. But I had no other choice. I really needed help. After some surprising sleep, I got up around 11:30, went to the toilet and then went back to bed. Mum, Dad and I got up (well, I stayed laying in bed because the light of day was too bright for me to handle, and my bedroom is nice and dark) around 1pm (we’re not morning people at all), and prepared to go to hospital. I went to the toilet, had a cup of water (the only thing I’d consume since supper the night before, to around 8pm that night) and with my weak body, slowly got into the back of the car and went to hospital.
The experience going to hospital almost feels like it wasn’t real. I suppose I was in a really strange state. Looking in the mirror just before leaving, I really looked like I was somewhat dying – at the very least, tired from 5 days of suffering. While Dad went to find somewhere to park the car, Mum and I went into the emergency room and booked in at the window. Just after sitting down, almost immediately (and surprisingly, after hearing so many “emergency waiting” stories) I got called. We went into the triage which was pretty scary as it was sort of how I imagined it. It’s the first pit-stop for where real deathly emergencies are inspected/presented. The ambulance entry doors were open. An emergency helicopter outside was about to take off. The echoey room was full shaking with the sounds of the helicopter. The nurse had me sat down at his station and took my temperature, heart rate and log of symptoms (mostly all said at the top of my voice over the overpowering propeller sounds). Another nurse wheeled me down the corridor away from the station and got me into a room where the doctors and nurses first inspect and find out whats going on. I gave a sample of urine, came back to the room and laid on the hospital bed. After some more heart rate tests, and many different nurses/doctors, coming in to help (all surprised by how cold my hands were – they’re usually pretty cold), one doctor assigned to me, stayed and helped. I was very thankful. Doctor Fitzpatrick, a very kind, caring, concerned and knowledgeable doctor – was a little worried about my heart rate (something like 130/91 at one point) and after a long while going through the stories I had (like the time going cold turkey on Paroxetine, among other happenings in my history) and trying a few exercises, he advised that I be admitted into ‘overnight stay’ to be monitored.
For the sake of documentary, I suppose I will go a little further into that experience I had before being moved to overnight stay, just down the corridor a little further. While I got my shirt off to get ready for a robe, I was tested a little further for my heart (ecg). I was tested lying down, then standing. A nurse came in to stick all these little patches on me with cords attached (they aren’t very sticky), connected to a machine. He even stuck one patch on each of my ankles! I tried my best to relax. I was pretty relaxed, but absolutely tired and weak. My heart could have been beating like that because of numerous things. In general, I am a very easily stressed and am worried person. I suffer from some pretty extreme anxiety and any of the above can make me beat a little too much. The infection could have been taking its toll on my body causing my heart to “work” more, also. The only thing I had to consume that day so far, was 1 cup of water – I felt thirsty nevertheless and so I suppose dehydration could also have been a likely reason. The chaos of the ER and helicopter, etc, could have also added to it all even though I was put into a nice little room on a great adjustable bed. High blood pressure or even a bit of ALL of the above, could add to scary heart rates. All of this instant testing and immediate attention towards ME could also have been a bit of a heart-racing factor.
With my blood being taken for testing, an IV drip of what I think was some kind of water was attached to my left arm (direct, no machine regulating the amount I receive). I got through that 1000ml pretty quick, in over an hour or so. The blood he took actually surprised me. It was quite a bit given that it only took him a few seconds to draw it. Mum was sitting by me pretty much the entire time, except when the doctor and I needed to be alone for a few minutes. That was something I didn’t think i’d ever have to go through, especially not until I turn 50 (Craig Ferguson would know a little bit about that). Dad arrived after a long time trying to find a spot to park + having to walk a long way to find Mum and I (Dad has a broken back, so the walking stick was really a good thing to have). He arrived after the doctor tried many things to try and determine exactly what was wrong with me. We did pressure points (pressing down on areas of my body while laying flat) looking for pain. None really bad, no sharp jolts. We did some leg muscle strength tests. He asked me to accelerate, kick, pull back, etc with my feet/legs (probably in relation to the lower back pain i’ve had over the past 2 months). After Dr. Fitzpatrick got the results from the urine and blood tests, he let us know what was going on. Not anything really showed. I think everyone found it quite strange and unusual to not find anything – evidence of bladder infection/UTI or anything of the like. Blood was clean. An enema was mentioned, but later nothing was mentioned of it after here (musnt have been very important). So I waddled down the corridor following a nurse in green, carrying my IV bag with tube connected to my arm. She sat me down on bed 9 in a pretty quiet and empty ward. There, were 2 other patients (young) across and beside me. They looked like they had the gastro/food poisoning sickness or something like that. They were going through some pretty rough stuff compared to me. But my problems still were needing some kind of treatment. The doctor introduced me to what the place was that I was in. Showed me the buzzer and let me know where things were and how things work there (it’s a 24hour facility which is absolutely grand). I said thank you, and didn’t see him after that. A new doctor came around and talked with Mum, Dad and I. I finished my IV and got a second 1000ml bag.
I was facing the sunset by this time. It was bright having the sun in my face, but I found it really beautiful looking at the light coming through the trees and the shaded glass, casting on my Mum and Dad and the room. It was a nice sight. Soon after dark, we prepared for a bladder scan with the nurse (I think it was an ultrasound). Before and after the scan, with the doctor, we talked about how it is possible that I had an infection, and how I might be past it right now. “It is possible that last night was the peak of the mountain” (so-to-speak), and what ever is left is residual. That was comforting to know even though I overheard him say to his boss how my case was unusual. The scan came out fine, and no urine was left inside the bladder after passing/going. This is a good sign.
While laying and waiting I could hear the doctor talking to a new patient across and down from me. I heard that he takes heroin and amphetamines and he was experiencing some pain in his shoulder (something you’d probably see a GP for). Mum, Dad an I felt pretty sure he was here for morphine or something like that. I could be wrong (about him), but it made me think of how (i’m sure) people must come in and waste the hospitals time, a lot of the time, frequently. I was a little worried that because no evidence of anything seriously wrong with me was appearing – would make me think that they think that i’m wasting their time. But that’s just my way of thinking. I worry too much. I really did need some help that day.
The doctor gave me the clear to leave that night, and after a little bit of time waiting (after the heroin man got up and left himself), I received my letter (for my GP) and some words from the boss doctor, who said that if my problems persist, I should see a urologist/specialist with my GP. A nurse came and unhooked me from my IV (which was half empty attached to a machine regulating my dose at 250ml/h – there were no clocks around so this was my only source of telling the approx. time), I put my shirt on, and we made our way home.
I was happy to leave and go home, but still, I was feeling unwell, experiencing my problems, but not as bad as it had been. I hoped that maybe it had all been flushed out of my system because of the drip. I did feel a little uneasy about leaving the hospital though – leaving from the care of good hands. I also felt like nothing was really treated while there. All there was to receive from the day was good news about my blood and urine tests/results, and a dehydrating drip. Last night wasn’t too bad. I watched The Eye with Dad. I got to sleep alright, but still felt that urge “to go”. Thankfully, I felt no fevers or shakes.
Today, I woke up once to go to the toilet some 10 or so hours after being asleep. Slept for a couple more hours and got up after midday to have a nice day to relax, and watch tv with my Dad – something I absolutely adore to do.
Right now, having finally felt an urge and good feeling to go on the computer (something I don’t feel great about at all when I feel unwell – computers aren’t all that easy to sit in front of all the time), I write this piece for the feeling or need I have to document “of it”. I can only hope now that I get better each day, and I don’t go back down the hill like I did during the week. I never want to go back to the hospital – as comforting as it was to be with people who knew what to do and could help – for as long as needed, unless i’m really old. Time to just see what happens, drink as much water as possible (since the drip seemed to help me some, last night, flushing it out and away from my system), see my GP on Wednesday and hopefully i’ll get better without any specialist help. I still feel the urges, but not so urgently right now (since i’ve been going once every hour or hour-and-a-half). The burning and tingles seem to be calming, but still is there a little in my bladder area.