Sunday, September 30, 2018

Less Than a Year

A couple weeks ago, I visited my ENT about an oddity with my trach button. He ran a few tests and the results came back with an infection. I can count on a few mouth sticks how often I've had a trach infection, so I started on an antibiotic September 18. The prescription was fairly hefty with two pills taken three times a day for ten days.

Last week Sunday night, I took the prescription along with the rest of my meds and got ready for bed. The nurse and I noticed my abdomen was sticking out a little further than usual, but I'm often portly late in the day. Memories from last November briefly ran through my head with being on a strong antibiotic and ending in the hospital with an ileus and major stomach pain.

Monday morning came with everything looking normal again. I continued with the antibiotic and my regular routine. Around 10:30, I was on flat time and turned on my side for further relief on pressure sores. With YouTube running on my computer behind me, I watched my list of entertainment in a mirror. I could also see my lower chest in the reflection and noticed my stomach growing.

I cut my side time short, but by noon the battle of the bulge looked near. I opted to skip lunch and quick tried to get some web updates complete along with a note to my ENT to adjust the prescription. Unfortunately, by 2:00 war was declared and the too familiar stomach pain had started. Over the next few hours, some relief was managed and I called in my main day assistant for help.

Around 8:00, discomfort was partially under control, but I still looked at least six months pregnant. I decided to try to make it through the night and we would head to the hospital in Des Moines in the morning. That time came quicker than expected with my night nurse waking up my parents at 4:00 Tuesday morning.

By 6:00, I was again in the ER with the same stomach trouble I had less than a year ago. This time, I didn't wait on the NG tube and it was shoved in for the fifth time in my life. Within an hour, a liter of fluid had been sucked out of me and my nose was the discomfort now with the tube instead of my stomach.

Just before attempting sleep Wednesday night at the hospital, the tube was again removed. For a first in my hospital visits, I was released in an evening and was back home by 8:00 Thursday night. By 10:30 Friday morning, I was again on my regular flat time watching something via computer. However, I stayed on my back as I dozed on and off after several days of little to no sleep.

I'm thankful God has surrounded me with a multitude of caregivers and parents that know me well and how to roll with the flow. Throughout my stay with sitters and medical staff, possibly a future post, I saw how He provides in every circumstance. Problems and frustrations were encountered, but it went well overall. Each of these instances comes with varying diet instructions that have yet to be consistent. Therefore, I'm carefully getting back to a regular diet again and attempting to follow instructions.

For this week, I'm praying it goes as expected and will not include unscheduled trips.

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