Thursday, October 27, 2011

Immobilized

Last Sunday was a fun-filled adventure day. I borrowed an Ergo from a friend (best thing ever, does anyone want to get me one?) and wore Wriggly around the whole day, except for the short time that I put Squiggle in it and carried him. I felt like Supermom or Rani Lakshmibai.
My husband posted this photo as how he sees me. Sweet, yes?
However, when I woke up Monday morning I was in pain. Breathing was difficult and I felt like someone had hit me in the ribs with a baseball bat. I went to the chiropractor and resolved to wake up feeling healed on Tuesday. It didn't happen.

Tuesday morning I added a pain in the neck that matched the one in my ribs/back. The weird thing was that it was all on the right side. My left side felt fine. I decided to rest for the day and parked my bottom in my recliner to do just that. Tuesday night I realized that there was no way that I could walk upstairs, and even if I could I probably wouldn't be able to lie down. So my recliner got some extra time with me.

I managed to sleep about two hours when an incredibly painful cramp in my back brought me wide awake. It felt like a Charlie horse in my mid-back. I could only take shallow, excruciating breaths. I woke Bug up.

Wriggly was in my lap sleeping. I couldn't move to get him re-latched so we had to wake my mom up and bring her downstairs to hold him while we tried to figure out what to do. Bug wanted me to go to the hospital. I just wanted the pain to stop and breath to return. It seems the inability to breathe is worrisome and unpleasant. It did give me a chance to practice my Bradley relaxation techniques though. I kept telling myself not to panic remembering that panic is what ends up killing people in desperate situations.

I decided that I had to go to the doctor but didn't know what to do with my nursling. Even though it's been a while since I've been to an ER, I doubt they've gotten faster at seeing patients. I put in a call to my midwife/LLL leader/massage therapist friend. I figured she'd be the most likely to give me advice about what to do with Wriggly while reassuring me that what I was experiencing wasn't life threatening. I really wanted to be talked out of going. I wouldn't have been able to move myself, so we most likely would have had to call an ambulance. I would have been wearing only a bra since I couldn't move to put on a shirt. And the bill. I really didn't want the bill.

She told me that they probably wouldn't do anything but give me painkillers. (Doing nothing to address the problem.) Since they don't know me they would probably dismiss my reaction to the pain as overreaction and not take me seriously. In my experience doctors are dismissive of patients and that's one of the reasons I avoid going to them whenever possible.

She recommended that I try to tough it out and go see a chiropractor in the morning. After discussing it with my husband we decided to try that.

I sent everyone else to sleep and stayed up watching a marathon or "Kidnapped" on Netflix. In the morning I called my chiropractor. He told me to come in before lunch to have his undivided attention. He worked with me and using ice, the TENS machine and the wall I got adjusted a bit. He told me that based on my symptoms he suspected an out of place rib and a torn muscle. He told me I would get some relief soon, but that it wouldn't get noticeably better until Friday. His predictions have been accurate in the past so I think he's probably right about this as well.

Today is the first day that I've been able to take a half of a normal breath without a stabbing pain, so that is improvement. I can also sit and just exist without agony. So that is good too. It is the first time I've been able to type so that is why you're getting this update.

I still don't get out of the chair without help, and I haven't had a shower in days. I hope to get one today with Bug's help. At least I can make it to the toilet and am not forced to use a bedpan again. I don't prefer doing that. We have a party tomorrow for a combo Squiggle's birthday and meet Wriggly. I'd like to be able to move for that, even if I won't be able to clean for it. I miss holding my baby. The past few days we've been forced to use the Boppy to prop him on my lap. I miss snuggling him on my chest. On the other side, Squiggle has spent much more time sitting with me on my chair. So there have been some near-cuddles there.

I am counting on my chiro to be correct that by tomorrow I'll merely be in pain and not agony. I'm tired of being immobilized and want my family fun back.

Apologies for anything that doesn't make sense. My neck pain is getting intense so I am posting without proofreading.

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