Wednesday, June 20, 2012

e coli is not my friend

It's been a long while since I've posted anything.  First, Tax Season hit and then I got sick.  Really, really sick.

On May 14th I woke up with a high fever and a lot of pain in my lower left abdomen and back.  I got progressively worse throughout the day so around 2pm my husband took me to the ER.  By 8pm I was admitted and I was there for 6 days.

I had a massive infection in my kidneys that was caused by a very drug-resistant form of e coli.

I was released from the hospital on May 20th but was released on oxygen during activity.  What this meant is that any time I was doing anything except sitting on the couch or lying in bed I had to wear oxygen.  Our insurance company delivered all the oxygen equipment to our house including a concentrator, back-up tank and 5 small tanks to take on trips outside of the house.  I had developed fluid on my lungs from the infection and all the fluids they gave me in the hospital hence why I had to have the oxygen.

Thankfully, within about 5 days at home I no longer needed the oxygen.  Whew!

A few days after coming home I started running fevers and developed pain on the right side.  More tests were done by my doctor's office and they found the e coli bug had jumped over to my other kidney and I was still infected with it.

But luckily I did not need to go back in to the hospital as an inpatient.  Instead, we rushed over to the Short Stay unit at the hospital where they inserted a PICC line in to my arm.  I then returned to the hospital every twelve hours for 7 days for an infusion of antibiotic in to my veins.

The antibiotic killed what little appetite I had thus further decreasing my energy levels so it was a very rough week.

Flash forward 2.5 weeks and I now have the PICC line out of my arm and my appetite and energy levels are much improved.  But the pain on the right side has remained and in the past few days has gotten significantly worse.  But the fevers are still gone.

I am on painkillers for the pain and had a CT scan today that will hopefully shed some light on what is causing the pain.  I see my doctor tomorrow afternoon and I look forward to him having some answers for me.

During all of this I have had to discontinue the Humira that keeps my Crohn's Disease under control and I cannot start it again until we are absolutely sure the infection is gone.  So I do feel my CD starting to act up but so far it's been relatively minor.

The outflow of love and support my husband and myself received was humbling.  You really do find out who your true friends are when things like this happen.  Our pastor was extremely caring and supportive and even visited me in the hospital to show his concern and to pray with us.

So many people have sent their love and prayers I've lost count.  I received flowers, plants and even cards in the mail.  And one of my favorite clients even sent one of those edible arrangements to my hospital room.  And he's in New York!

But through this all I have discovered that family I thought I have I do not have.  Despite our connection on facebook and the many many updates about my condition that were posted by both my husband and myself to my facebook page, I have heard absolutely NOTHING from two of my cousins.  This hurts me beyond words.  The half a minute it would have taken them to post a few words of support on my wall would have meant the world to me.  It's ironic too as one of those cousins has expressed to me in the past how she thinks the generations ahead of us did such a crappy job of staying in touch with each other and she hoped we could set a better example.

I don't mean for this to sound like I am ungrateful to the people who did show their love.  I am unbelievably grateful but I am still really, really hurt but the complete disregard people who are supposed to be family to me have shown.  I hope that by expressing my feelings here I can let it all go and move on.

I still have a lot of healing to do and some uncertainty as we face what is causing the pain I am experiencing.  There is a high probability that surgery is in my near future.