Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Our first (and hopefully last!) visit to the ER

Monday was awful. I woke up feeling really crampy and had a bad backache. Thanks to the pain, I couldn't keep anything down. Not even water. My body caught on to the Benadryl trick about a week-and-a-half ago, but I'd been doing really well and had only been sick a few times since. It's like my body saved it all up for Monday.

What really scared me was that every so often, I would get a sharp pain in my back that would radiate forward to my belly and cause severe cramping. I was so worried I was having contractions that I ended up calling Damon in the morning to come home. Fortunately, I happened to have a prenatal visit already scheduled for that afternoon. I had traces of protein in my urine, and my blood pressure was slightly elevated. Combined with the back pain, my doctor thought I might have a bladder infection. To be on the safe side, though, he had me schedule an ultrasound for the next day (his tech is only there Tuesdays and Thursdays) to check the length of my cervix. This is to check whether I'm in preterm labor. I also had to go to the lab to have blood drawn and my urine checked again.

I did pretty well after we got home. I managed to keep a little food and fluids down. Until bedtime. I felt so awful I went to bed to read at 6:30. About an hour later, I got diarrhea. This caused some major vomiting. When I felt a little better, I tried to eat and drink a little more. About an hour after the first incident, I suddenly felt even worse in bed. My right hand felt tingly and I was so hot and nauseous, so I got up to go to the bathroom again.

I made it to the small hallway that separates the bedroom and bathroom before I felt like I was going to faint. Now, I've had my share of fainting spells in the past, but I've never had it happen so quickly before. I managed to slide down the wall and sit. I vaguely remember asking Damon for some juice. He asked me what kind, and I said I didn't care. That's the last thing I remember. The next thing I know, I'm starting to come to and I feel myself shaking like crazy. That's what really made me panic. When I was Abby's age, I would get really high fevers and have seizures, but I can't remember ever fainting and shaking like that before. Damon was still downstairs getting juice when I woke up, so I know I wasn't even out for a minute but it felt like hours. As soon as I felt awake enough, I flew to the bathroom and got majorly sick again. I sipped the orange juice Damon brought me and called my doctor.

The fainting and the shaking is what ultimately had me calling my doctor's after-hours nurse hotline. After a bunch of questions, the nurse told me to go to the hospital to get checked out. The hospital my doctor is affiliated with is brand-new and only about 10 minutes from our house, so despite the circumstances, I was pretty excited to see inside. I couldn't believe how smoothly everything went! They didn't even give me a chance to sit down in the er waiting room before they were ushering me in. By the time we got there, I was feeling pretty good all things considered. They checked my vitals, then the nurse drew some blood and hooked an iv needle to my arm.

That's when everything went downhill again.

I'm a wimp when it comes to needles. Remember I mentioned I've been known to faint in the past? 90% of the time has been because of needles or procedures done at a doctor's office. Since she drew a few vials of blood and had to hook me up to the iv, it took a while. I could feel myself slipping while she worked. The on-call doctor came in shortly after that to ask me questions, and I barely remember maybe half of what was said. When he left, I told the nurse I really needed to vomit. I thought I was well enough to walk to the bathroom assisted. What a mistake! I made to the nurses' station a few feet outside my room when I had to stop and hold on. All I wanted todo was slump down and pass out, but the nurse wouldn't let me. A few more feet, and she had another nurse bring a wheeled desk chair over to get me back to my room.

I felt so much better once I did get to vomit. In a bag. Yuck! While I was getting sick, the nurse hooked me up to oxygen and the iv drip. After that, it was a waiting game. Waiting to get the fluid in me. Waiting for the blood results. I went through 2 bags of fluid, and my bloodwork came back normal. They decided that the fainting was caused by severe dehydration.

The best part of the night came at the end. Before they released me, they brought in a portable ultrasound machine to check on the babies. They were laying horizontally across my belly, touching feet. Their little feet weren't just touching, though, they were kicking each other like crazy. It was hilarious to watch! They were fighting for space in there. Baby B is definitely going to be a handful. He (or she) was the one starting it. He (or she) would pull back and wait for Baby A to stretch out, then would kick and shove like crazy. Baby A didn't put up with that and fought back! Sorry Rita, we didn't get to take any pictures home that time. We would've loved to have a video of that!

I was sent home with a prescription for Zofran (anti-nausea medication they give to chemo patients and pregnant women) and was told to fill it before we went home, so we went to a 24-hour Walgreens. I was starving by then, which was the first time I'd been hungry all day, so we stopped at McDonald's. Their cheeseburgers never tasted so good!

Yesterday morning, we went back to my doctor's office for the cervical ultrasound and were told everything looked fine. No preterm labor. Whew! We didn't get to see the babies, but it was a relief knowing everything's going to be fime.

I felt better than I have in months yesterday! I couldn't believe how great I felt after how horrible I felt the day before. I couldn't seem to get enough to eat and drink all day and I never once felt the least bit nauseous. I can't remember the last time that happened!

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