Writing from me own bed, yay! I checked out against medical advice because my body was telling me it would conspire with the bacteria to murder me if I didn’t get real sleep. You cannot do that in a hospital, especially when they spend half the night fast-pushing fluids to try to raise your blood pressure. I’m not kidding when I tell you I’m carrying an extra 20 pounds or so of liquid under my skin. I’m swollen all over and my poor lungs have limited room to work, so I sound like a Victorian woman in an extra-tight corset when I talk or breathe. I can’t crouch down to get thing without my legs feeling like they’re gonna pop like water balloons. Luckily, my kidneys are functioning fine and doing their best to deal with the situation.
And the best-worst thing is, I suspect it was all over nothing. I run low anyway, but I’m usually not tested after I’ve been lying down for hours. It’s usually shortly after I’ve had some ordinary but briskish activity, and then I clock in somewhere between 100-110 over something I can never remember. I had absolutely no other signs of too-low pressure. I wasn’t faint, light-headed, dizzy, or tunnel visioning my way to a blackout. I was merrily popping to the potty whenever, and the only difficulty unplugging and plugging in the IV pump came from excess fluid making it hard to bend, and muscle weakness from so much inactivity. But that improved plenty with all the lovely electrolytes, so my muscles are much more inclined to stay cheerful.
My morning bloodwork (taken at 4:48 in the ay-em, people – after the nurses had been dicking around with fluid pushes until after midnight, and then I had to wait for my main nurse to catch a break in her duties so we could go walkies, because all that fluid pressure pressed on nerves that made my legs do the St. Vitus’ Dance) came back with good results: all the numbers, including white cell count, were in acceptable ranges. The kidney ultrasound showed both working as advertised. The doctor was mainly concerned with the low pressure, which is NEVER going to go back up to where she wants it if I don’t get out of bed more) and my heart rate, which stayed fast. Well, the poor thing has an extra 20lbs of fluid to push around now. And they’ve checked my concern, which is the shallow rapid breathing, and aren’t too worried. The fluids aren’t leaking where they shouldn’t, and my oxygen sat is awesome as always. It’s all, “Medical crisis? What medical crisis?” We don’t have the blood cultures back saying fer sure that my blood’s actually infected. So I decided to risk going home, with the promise that I’ll be back in a jiffy if the cultures show a blood infection, or if I take a turn for the worse.
I spiked a fever this evening, which the charge nurse familiar with my situation said was normal and just come back in the morning if it was high, or earlier if other scary stuff happened. B did my laundry, kept watch over me while I slept, and only left when my fever went way down and I was able to watch teevee and joke a while. He’s got his phone by his ear just in case. I’ve started oral antibiotics, my appetite’s improving, and I haven’t had any nausea. I’m able to stay hydrated with water and Gatorade, plus the immense quanties of IV fluid my poor kidneys are frantically trying to process right now. Everything’s right as it can be, and disaster plans in place just in case.
Ima go take care of my poor, swollen legs for a bit, then get some more sleep, and we’ll see what the bloodwork tells us tomorrow. Here’s hoping that, even if the infection is in my blood, I can just do outpatient infusions rather than having to go back to constant insomnia… but we got the bags packed just in case.
Thank you again for all your patience and well-wishes. Not sure yet when I’ll be back to full Dana capacity, but hopefully soon. And really, despite my caretakers’ obsession with blood pressure numbers that I suspect don’t fit me, they’ve been amazing, and I know they’ll make sure I’ve got the the knowledge and resources I need to make the prudent decisions. Not to mention, if it wasn’t for the lack-of-sleep issue, I totally would’ve stayed for the food. Amazing good food, people. And best nurses ever.
We’re on a bumpy road, but at least all the signs say we’re on our way to recovery!