Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Just for tonight

Tonight I need to do something I don't let myself do very often -- write exactly what I'm feeling without interjecting any humor or putting a positive spin on it. Tonight I just need to get everything off my chest and hopefully tomorrow I'll wake up feeling lighter, happier, more like myself.

The truth is, I'm really struggling.

I'm struggling with the fact that I'm back in the hospital just weeks after I left. I'm struggling with the fact that by the time I'm discharged from this admission, I will have spent a total of eight weeks in this place since the beginning of the year. Two out of the last ten months of my life have been spent within these hospital walls!

I'm struggling with how serious the issue was this time around, how incredibly sick I got, and the way it's taken me an entire week to feel strong enough to be out of bed, walking around. I'm struggling with how many people I consider to be very important in my life still didn't call or visit... have never called or taken the time to visit when I'm in the hospital.

I'm struggling with the fact that I wasn't home to get Morgan dressed up and take her Trick-or-Treating tonight; that I've missed several other holidays and special occasions (Easter, her first birthday party, Fourth of July, etc) because I've been here.

But most of all I'm struggling with the bitterness I can feel inside me this time.

I don't want to feel sorry for myself and I really don't want to be angry, but I just can't shake the darkness I've been feeling the past few days. Sure, I get through the days okay. I can laugh and joke with the nurses, I can hold normal conversations with people and now that I'm feeling a little better, it's really not that difficult to convince everyone that I'm back to being normal, happy Jenny.

But in the quiet moments, when the lights are off and I'm lying in my hospital bed alone with my thoughts or when I get off the phone with Morgan and the tears start rolling down my face, I feel it so strongly - this heartache and frustration that is becoming far too commonplace in my life.

I'm okay, really. I suspect that within a few days I'll get out of this funk and honestly start feeling like myself again. I know that I'm blessed and have so much in this life to be grateful for. I realize how fortunate I am compared to so many others out there, and I make a conscious effort to not take those blessings for granted.

But for now, just for tonight, I need to be able to cry and say that this sucks. This is really hard. This isn't fair, and it's absolutely terrifying.

Monday, October 29, 2012

That time I thought I was dying

Details and "the rest of the story" will follow but for now, here are a few of the highlights:

- I'm in the hospital again.

- I scored my first trip in an ambulance on Tuesday night after having spent most of the evening in my local emergency room.

-The crippling back and chest pain I was experiencing with each and every breath in addition to the unusual heart palpitations I'd had a few days earlier made for an excruciating interesting evening of physical and mental torture all kinds of medical testing.

- The diagnosis: Pulmonary Embolism

- More tests conducted when I arrived here at the U of U revealed that there were actually multiple clots in both lungs, as well as one slightly larger clot in my heart that had attached itself to the tip of my port.

- We are about 98% certain the blood clots were caused by my birth control (which makes the text message I sent to my cousin a few nights before the incident that read "I think my birth control is killing me!" seem a bit less dramatic).

- At one point I had three separate points of access to accommodate all the meds they were pumping into my body - my port plus two peripheral IVs.

- That was before I went into surgery to have my port pulled; now, several days later, I'm down to a dual lumen PICC line. I was able to properly grieve the passing of my port when my surgeon brought it to my room in a bag later that night so I could say goodbye.

- One day (I think it was Thursday?) I decided to count the number of needle-sticks I got in a 24 hour period. I lost count after nine.

- This has been without a doubt the most terrifying and painful experience of my entire life! Almost a week later, I feel like my head is still spinning. I'm physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted and still in pain a lot of the time, but I do feel like things are getting better each day.

- For everyone who has been aware of the situation, I want to let you know how much I appreciate your positive thoughts and words of encouragement! Adam and I couldn't have made it through this last week without your love and support. From the bottom of my (slightly malfunctioning) heart, thank you, thank you, thank you!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

My God given right as a parent

The other night the girls and I were in Wal Mart picking up a few last minute items to prepare for my sister in law's wedding when Shylee said, "Jenny, my stomach is hurting."

"Did you eat too much," I asked.

"I don't think so."

"Do you need to poop?"

"Ew," she said, disgusted, "NO!"

"Are you sure? I bet you need to poop."

"I'm SURE! And I think those people right there can hear you, " she said, pointing.

So I said a little louder, "It's okay. Everyone poops. You don't need to be shy about it."

That's when she took as step toward me, motioned for me to come closer and whispered, "I really don't need to poop.... and you're kind of embarrassing me."

Still crouched down so I was at her eye level, I sweetly said, "Welcome to the rest of your life, kiddo."

I can't decide whether this makes me an awful person or if it means that I'm finally magnifying my calling as a parent.