Because my hospital odyssey is finally over, and I'm back home.
Apologies for leaving you all hanging, but I just couldn't summon the energy to update from my hospital bed.
I was there for 10 nights and 11 days, and it was almost too much for me to handle. I think that was the loneliest experience I've ever had -- and it wasn't from lack of visitors. It's just hard to be far away from your family and be sick -- and I mean really, really sick. Like wake up at night and wonder if you're ever going to be yourself again sick. Wondering if you'll ever be able to eat again, or walk normally again, or have normal "plumbing" again. It was a very scary ordeal.
I'm not out of the woods yet. I am home with two disgusting and painful drains in my stomach. I hope they will come out soon, but don't know when it will happen.
The docs kept me in the hospital because I kept spiking huge temperatures overnight. I'd be up in the day and be fine, then as soon as I went to sleep -- zoom! My temperature would pop right up to 101 and higher. They finally decided -- even though I had two drains pulling old, leaked bile from my stomach -- that I needed more pumping, and various torture procedures involving sharp needles and tender parts of my belly followed. There's nothing grosser than watching a doctor pump nasty liquid from your stomach while you are (not sedated) under orders to hold completely still.
Finally they sucked enough of the old bile that was rife with bacteria from me, the temperatures stopped, and I was allowed to leave. I was sent home armed with yet another round of antibiotics -- I've been on them for the past two weeks -- but promptly broke out in a terrible itchy rash, so the doc said I could ditch them (thankfully!). The rash is awful; it mostly bothers me at night, of course.
I am so wiped out from three weeks of not being able to sleep or eat that all I do is snooze. If I walk 4 blocks, I will sleep two hours. I try to eat, but I can't get enough in me to get my protein levels back up to where they should be. Docs sent me home loaded with special nutrient drinks.
In between naps and snacks, I try to baby talk my damaged bile duct into healing so I don't need another surgery. I hope it's listening!
Somehow in all this I did gain weight -- but I still hope it's just weird hospital water weight. My legs are so wasted compared to how they were before I went into the hospital. I think I lost about two inches of muscle from my calves! I don't see how I can be heavier, but I am. It's the most bizarre thing.
Who knew such a simple surgery would come so close to killing me? Twix, I gather you had a rough time too. It's been awful. I just have to hope that now that I am home I can mend myself and gain back my strength. Otherwise, a very uncomfortable surgery looms in my future.
Labor Day riding
7 hours ago