Thursday, August 9, 2012

IV, Chest Tube, Epidurals, and Catheters.

As I'm starting to coming out of my fuzz I realized I was connected to more tubes than I anticipated. I knew I would be hooked up to an IV but what in the heck is this "hose" sticking out of my side?  They had inserted a chest tube to drain the 5 liters of fluid from my chest cavity.  When I say, "hose" it literally was the size of a water hose.  

When I realized I couldn't feel my legs and I started to panic.  "I don't remember the doctor telling me I'll be numb from the waist down!!" I thought for sure something was wrong.  "Maybe she accidently snipped some nerves." I was convinced I was going to be paralyzed.  Chris tried to calm me but I insisted something is wrong.  I started punching my leg as hard as I could and yelled, "See!!!  I can't feel a thing!!!" and he's yelling back at me to stop punching my legs!!!  I had an epidural and the tube was still hanging from my back.  I bet the nurses thought I was out of my mind.  Since I couldn't feel anything "down there" I didn't realize I had a catheter in either. times!!!! I'm so glad I can laugh about it now. 

I was in ICU for 3 days.  I don't remember much about ICU.  One thing I do remember was waking up to some commotion.  Apparently, a patient was trying to escape and he and the nurses were screaming at each other.  

They eventually released me from ICU and transfered me to another room.  I was so happy because I thought that it meant I was going home soon.  "As soon as my doctor checks up on me, I'm outta here!!!"  That wasn't the case.  I still had my chest tube in and I were to stay for at least 2 more days.  I was devastated!!!  I just wanted to be home with my family!!!  To make matters worse, the boys were not allowed to visit me. One particular night, our parents said they were taking the boys to Chuck-E-Cheese and Chris would meet them there after visiting hours.    The nurses had urged me to try walking around after Chris left.  I was still hooked up to the catheter and IV so I slowly climbed out of bed grabbed the IV pole and started roaming the hall.  When I got to the end of the hall, I stopped and looked out the window.  This was in January so the trees were bear.  I don't recall what floor I was on but I had a pretty clear view.  When I looked out the window, I realized I could actually see Chuck-E-Cheese from a distance!!!  I sat at that window for about an hour sobbing because I wanted to see them so badly.  I felt so far, yet they were so near.

I don't know how anyone can be addicted to morphine.  It helped with the pain but it left me feeling even worst!!!  I felt like one of those drug addicts you see on that show Intervention.  I would go into this zombie like state for about 20 minutes and then with a snap of a finger I was awake.  I thought it was pretty scary because even though I was in zombie mode, I was still aware of my surroundings but I wasn't able to communicate or move.  I felt like I was just slumped over, drooling all over myself, with my eyes rolled back. 

Not only did I miss my family but was I bored out of my mind.  Really, the only channel that was worth watching was Discovery Channel but after 2 days I got over it.  I couldn't take anymore Alaska fishing shows and I was sick and tired of that Blue Moon beer commercial.  To this day whenever I see Blue Moon beer, I cringe because it just reminds me of being in the hospital.  When the commercials come on, I immediately change the channel.  It's just a painful reminder.

After being in the hospital for a week, the doctor finally gave me the okay to go home but I would have to start chemo in 2 weeks.