Monday, February 28, 2011

I'm baack!

Wow, the last two weeks have been scary. Hands down, the most ill I've been. I was beginning to think I wouldn't make it, and finally on Friday I called my doctor. He sent me to the ER. After a short hospitalization, they ruled out a few things but my liver is definitely failing. I had spent two weeks of using all my energy fighting how sick I'd become and periods of excruciating pain. I wasn't eating, and when I did - I vomited about 1/2 the time. I was barely able to care for myself and had to get help to come in. I even needed a friend to help me take a shower! Pathetic!

My doctor was very understanding and I now fall into the category of "palliative care", a medical term meaning you treat the patient in a manner which provides the patient the highest quality of life. A patient enters this phase of life when they are dying. And boy, did I feel like I was close. I wasn't sure I was gonna make it.

I am a person with many odd reactions to medications. For example, I am allergic to Morphine. And, with liver disease I can't take more than 1 gram of Acetaminophen a day. This is very limiting when it comes to pain control. Dilauded is a common pain medication used for people like me, but I have a paradoxical reaction to it; while it does take the pain away, I am wired and hyper and can't sleep. I have that reaction to quite a few common medications. All that was left to try was a Fentanyl Patch. Anyone with a medical background knows what this is; it's a med used for those who are gravely ill. It's like a clear band-aid infused with Fentanyl - a potent narcotic - that delivers the drug in a consistent, time-release fashion. You put it on your skin and each patch lasts 72 hours, then you change it.

The most wonderful, unexpected and extraordinary thing occurred; I feel like myself again for the first time in months. Maybe even more than a year! I have energy! My mind is clear! I can do fun things and enjoy them because I'm not fighting how lousy I feel. It's a miracle, it truly is. And it doesn't make me feel dopey or loopy. I can drive!

So, I'm going to soak up every second I can. This may be the best of what lies ahead, and I can't waste a precious, sacred moment. I feel like I have a short chance at living and I've gotta grab it while I can. I would ask for those of you reading who care, please pray and/or send positive thoughts - a couple of my children are really struggling and it's been breaking my heart. Please, Dear God, let them come and share this time with me. It may be all we have left. Amen.

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