Warning! I got a little, uh, wordy. Put away that novel you read before bed, and just try this entry! They\’re probably close in length!
So! When I\’m in the hospital, all I think about (besides escape strategies) is what I\’m going to write about it when I get home. And then I get home and I\’m too lazy. But I\’ll attempt to regale you anyway. I know that\’s what you live for. Right? I knew it.
Hmm so I think I really started to feel sick last Friday. I went for my regular Friday post-chemo checkup and my throat was really hurting even though I totally had been doing my mouth care all week and I thought I had already beat out whatever mouth sores were starting up at the beginning of the week. But no. Wrong as always. Very bad throat thrush. Could barely swallow over the weekend. So you should note, I already couldn\’t really eat anything except yogurt and soup and Slurpees, and I was really hungry, plus (there\’s always a plus, isn\’t there? hee) my stomach really hurt. I didn\’t think it was that big of a deal because I sort of always seem to get stomach cramps when my counts are down, and I figured everything would be all right as soon as the weekend ended and my white cells started doing their job again, those lazy bums. But it was so bad over the weekend that all I could do was lie in various uncomfortable positions in bed. And I was supposed to get a blood transfusion on Monday, so I was also feeling kind of drained from the lack of blood. Always some extra fun, that is! But my temperature was dangerously close to Fever City, which equals automatic hospital admission, and my mom drew my blood and none of my counts were on their way up, so yeah, hospital it was. My kind-of-cute ER doctor pretty much guessed typhlitis right away when I described my symptoms (whenever the doctors are checking me, they always press on my stomach and ask if it hurts, and it never does, and this time it totally did and I was like WHOA, and then, OW, I mean yes), and I had to get an X-ray on the way to my room to see if they could rule it out. Gotta love lying on a cold slab of metal at 2am! Anyway, finally room, and precious medicine. I got a happy drug called Neubane (sp?) which made my tummy feel better and also let me SLEEP, for the first time in half a week. Beautiful.
I think I need a new paragraph. So the next morning they made me get an ultrasound, which told me while I wasn\’t having a baby, I definitely did have the typhlitis. Which meant I was not allowed to eat. Until they said so. This particularly sucked because my throat was finally feeling better and I could swallow again and I already hadn\’t had a real meal in about two days. I called Moe to cry about how hungry I was and how many stupid food commercials they like to show on TV. Ranting to friends is always good. :) So Monday my stomach was still hurting, but I got some more meds that night and the next morning, and after that I was good. And they had me on a bunch of antibiotics for my throat and stomach. And my counts shot up, because I am awesome, and my doctor said I was amazing. Finally, a little recognition. ;) I think Tuesday they put me on TPN, which is intravenous feeding so I could get all my nutrients in even though they were starving me. (By the way, lipids are so gross-looking.)
Also, of course I landed myself in the hospital the week that they have their inspection going on. So you can\’t break any rules. No fun. But my mom had also sent a big cookie tin as a thanks to all the staff on my floor and it arrived when I was there so I definitely tried to bribe my doctor into letting me out with that, but no luck. It did get me off the really annoying heart rate monitor that likes to beep loud and long whenever, well, pretty much whenever my heart beats.
Mostly it was an annoying stay because I felt completely fine after a couple of days and everything has to go so slooooow. Wednesday night I was allowed to go on \”clear liquids,\” which consists of the following: Ginger Ale, apple juice, clear broth, and Jell-O. Jell-O, okay, pretty good (at least they didn\’t bring me lemon this time, eww). The broth they brought me? Celery. What is THAT. Gross. Mostly I lived off apple juice that day. Mmm. Thursday afternoon I\’m back on FULL FOOD! Hurrah! I\’m supposed to \”take it easy\” with bland stuff like mashed potatoes and rice. Of course they don\’t actually give me any food, because lunch is over, so I just go for the nacho-flavored Goldfish I had in my room. Mmm. No problem. Stomach of steel, baby. Then some sour cream and onion chips. My doctors came in and were like, \”Yeah, way to follow orders. That\’s bland.\” The food is so bad there though. I did order mashed potatoes for dinner, and they tasted like the potato flakes hadn\’t fully dissolved. Ugh. Anyway. By the time I was actually allowed to eat, of course I didn\’t really feel like it anymore. I still hardly feel like it. My stomach\’s probably the size of a pea now. Great. (Guess it doesn\’t matter since I won\’t be able to enjoy Thanksgiving. No, thanks, I don\’t really feel like letting that go. ;)
Oh, man, I forgot to mention the SURGEONS! Well after my ultrasound, they came by to see me, just in case. So I could be put on the list. But oh, nothing to worry about. The chance of surgery is really slim here. It\’s just in case, you know, your bowel ruptures or something. It\’s cool. Anyway, I probably wouldn\’t have worried about it too much except that they kept coming back. With more and more people! Gah. Way to put the patient at ease, guys. They finally came for the last time on Thursday to say I was out of the woods there. Good to know. I hope my name\’s off that list now.
So finally I was allowed out on Friday \”morning\” which was actually about 2 in the afternoon, after I had another ultrasound in the morning to confirm that yes, the typhlitis was definitely gone, and no I was not lying when they felt my stomach for pain!!! Come on. I never lie. Which is why I\’m so awesome at BS (the card game). No one ever suspects me. ;) And so yes. HOME. It\’s the best. I highly recommend it. I guess this typhlitis thing is pretty bad though, like, thanks for never mentioning this horrible infection I\’m at a risk for, doctors. But most people are in the hospital and on TPN for closer to two weeks (yikes!) so I am very grateful it was not much worse. It helped that my counts went up so quickly. Did I mention? Because I\’m awesome? Just checking. :D
Tomorrow I have PT. I get PT when I\’m in the hospital too, but I don\’t like it as much. Mostly they just make me take walks (ew, physical activity) but at home I get to do lots of good stretches, plus they totally massage my leg. Also I get my blood drawn so I will find out whether or not I definitely will be chemo-lized during Thanksgiving. I don\’t see how my platelets wouldn\’t have made it from the 40s to 75 in three days, but I guess there\’s always a slight chance, right? Especially if I bribe them with cookies? :) And, it\’s Claire\’s last day here tomorrow! :( So Claire, if you read this, I hope you got my message! Stop being MIA! :) I want to see my Claire buddy one last time (before we all go to live with her in Australia, of course). And that? Is finally the end of this very long blog entry. Do I get some sort of prize? Or do you, for actually reading? ;) I\’ll work on that!