Tag Archives: bleeding

Hi-Ho, Hi-Ho, It’s Off To The ER I Go

Another day, and another trip to the ER. For another lousy cyst! A hemorrhagic cyst, to be exact.

I’ve have 4 cysts burst now. Man, this one was a doozie. At 3 pm last Friday I was on the phone with my Mom and putting a whole chicken in the oven when the sharp pain began. Something told me I shouldn’t wait very long to take 800 mg of Ibuprofen, so I didn’t. Soon I found myself on the sofa, lying on my side, curled up in pain. I looked at the clock. 30 minutes had gone by, and the pain was much worse. I hung up with my Mom. The kids were going nuts, and Rachel kept trying to climb up on me, making matters worse. I couldn’t even get to my computer to set up a video for them. I decided I needed to send an SOS to my husband at work. “Can you please come home? I’m in so much pain.” The tone in my voice must have gotten his attention because he immediately said “Sure babe. Give me two minutes and I”ll be out the door.”

I’m glad he was able to rush home, because by the time he walked in the door (15 mins later) he had two toddlers running a muck (Rachel was brushing her teeth with his toothbrush and trying to put on my chapstick) and a wife who was unable to move.

I was supposed to head into work in a couple of hours. I had my hubby bring me one tylenol, and took it. He also heated up my rice sock, which made matter worse (it’s helped previously). Although I thought I was probably experiencing a cyst bursting, the pain was higher up and the pain seemed more intense. I thought I just needed to give it more time, and I’d be fine. My sister called from Papua New Guinea and talked and prayed with me while I mostly cried. But I was thankful for the distraction.

By 5 pm, the pain was not subsiding so I told my husband we had better head to the ER. He called his Mom, who thankfully came right over to watch the kids. I knew I wouldn’t be able to walk, so my husband carried me to the car. The pain was unrelenting and intense. It felt like my the inside of my abdomen was being cut up with knives.

We got to the ER and my heart rate was very elevated and my BP was a bit low. I discovered (later) that they were worried I was going into shock. They didn’t have any beds so I agonized in the portable chair in the hallway for a while. The ER doc came to see me. I told him my abdomen hurt everywhere, from top to bottom. I mentioned my history of bursting cysts in the past, and my stage 4 endometriosis. I was also pretty disoriented, probably from breathing too fast. When the ER doc asked me if I was a doctor, I said “Yeah, I’m a doctor. Wait, no!” I shook my head. “I’m a nurse!” Feeling extremely sheepish, I said “I don’t what I am…” My husband and the ER doc were laughing pretty hard about that. A room became available right after my conversation and I was so relieved to be out of that chair and into the ER bed. The pain was still constant but at least I could lay down.

My Mom arrived and I was happy to have her present so that my husband could feel he could leave for at some point to grab some dinner.

I soon had an IV and labs sent off. Morphine was infused. I stopped writhing in pain and was able to breathe more normally. The pain became dull, and at this point I was able to isolate it to just below my diaphragm and on the lower right side of my abdomen, I was whisked off to ultrasound, then came back and had to drink 32 nasty ounces of contrast for the CT. The Dr did a pelvic exam, which was extremely painful.

Then I went off for the CT scan. At the CT they also injected contrast into my IV so that they could get a good look at both my organs and GI track.

Finally, a little after 10 pm, the CT results were back I was told that I had a hemorrhagic cyst, about 6 cm. It had burst, with blood going into my peritoneal cavity (hence all the pain in my upper abdomen). The cyst was on the left ovary, but supposedly it’s very common to feel pain on the other side, because ovaries can move a lot when there’s a heavy cyst on them. I don’t need surgery (praise the Lord!) and it should be reabsorbed over time. The only caveat is that it could still cause the ovary to twist on itself, so if I have a lot of pain again, I’m to go to the ER right away.

I came home very nauseated and had a bit of trouble sleeping because my abdomen felt very sore and yucky. Thankfully they gave me Zofran so I took one and it boggled my mind that it worked within a few minutes!

My belly continues to feel sore and full. I read it could take a number of weeks before the blood and cyst get reabsorbed. I hope it happens quickly!

I’m thankful that I’ve had five great pain-free months before Friday. And I’m glad the cyst wasn’t another endometrioma and that I don’t need surgery! Hemorrhagic cysts are a drag and (rarely) can be life threatening, but I’m just relieved it doesn’t mean that the endometriosis is progressing.

 

 

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Filed under Endometriosis, Pain

Mysterious God

In a rare turn of events, we received a huge refund from the IRS this year. My husband claims he did our taxes properly… he’s pretty nerdy and even reads tax books for ‘fun,’ so who am I to second guess him on that? We were pretty sure we just grossly overestimated our tax withholdings the previous year. Which left us with a large sum. We weren’t really sure what we would do with the money. “Hmm…maybe we could save up for a new car when mine dies?” My hubby said. His car did have over 200,000 miles on it. “Or maybe we could save up for a new A/C in case ours goes out?” I suggested, sure that our A/C was over 20 years old. We threw some other boring ideas out there. None of the options were very exciting. For once, we didn’t seem to have a huge pressing need for income (such as needing to buy a new car, replacing the fridge, etc). It felt odd. So we decided to wait before making any decisions. And we prayed about it.

Little did we know we’d be using that tax refund to buy international plane tickets. Less than a week later, I started bleeding and was diagnosed with a subchorionic hematoma (SCH). My doctor put me on strict bed rest. We weren’t given an exact time on how long it takes these things to heal, but were told that most heal up by 20 weeks. Well, that seemed a bit daunting as I was only 6 weeks along. I did a ton of research and discovered that the majority of women had markedly improved results from bed rest. There seemed to be a direct correlation between activity and bleeding. So I knew I would certainly be taking it easy. The only question was how much time off of work would my husband need? We still had 14 weeks to get to the 20 week point, with that being the worst case scenario. He had maybe 4 weeks of vacation saved up, tops. We weren’t really sure what the best course of action was. Burn up all of his vacation now? Save some for later? What if things got worse later on?

A day after my SCH was discovered, a thought occurred to me. What if my sister, who lived overseas, was able to come help us out for a few weeks? It seems pretty extreme but the fact of the matter was that everyone in our family has a job (which is a good thing!). My parents and my husband’s parents are all still working. Our siblings all have jobs. My sister who lives locally would have been a great help, but she had recently started a new job, making her free time almost non existent. My sister who lives overseas doesn’t have an official fill-out-a-time-card-type-of-job, per say, but she’s a full time missionary, a home schooler of her 3 children, and she does Bible translation and checking, as well as several other duties. I think she is probably busier than anyone I know! At the same time there was no ’employer’ she would need to ask for time off (other than her family). I gave her a call and set forth my proposition to pay for her and one of her three children’s tickets so that they could come out and help me get through bed rest. I knew I was asking a lot of her. At the same time, I know she wanted this baby of ours to make it just as much as we did. She responded to my proposal by saying that she and her husband would pray about it. The next day, they agreed for her to come and they were able to get tickets that same afternoon. The very next day, she and two of her children (they paid for another one of their kids to come) were en route to the U.S.! We were completely amazed at how quickly they were able to obtain tickets (and for an affordable price)!

My sister arrived pretty exhausted and obviously jet lagged, but I cannot fully describe the blessing she was to our family the nearly three weeks she was here (her kids went to visit their Grandma up North for half of the time they were here in the U.S.). She cooked delicious and hearty meals. When I was nauseous (which was about 90% of the time) she merely placed food in front of me –without even asking me if I was hungry– and I discovered that if I didn’t have to think about food, I could eat it. She cleaned, did laundry, prepared leftovers for my husband to grab on his way to work, and made muffins and cookies for the freezer, as well as extra meals. She also played with Josh, took care of him (did I mention that he loved her right off the bat? It was his first time ever meeting her!) and took him on walks every day. Best of all she MADE me stay on the sofa as much as I could stand it (there’s something commanding about older sisters….). In short, she was a total lifesaver. Literally.

A week later, we went in for an ultrasound. The hematoma hadn’t shrunk or grown. It had changed shape a little. Thankfully, the baby had grown a ton in just a week’s time and was almost twice the size from the previous week.

So bed rest ensued. And my sister continued to labor on our behalf (quite cheerfully I might add). We had my husband’s parents over for his dad’s birthday and my sister did all the cooking and cleaning for that. We celebrated Josh’s birthday with a party (invitations went out before the SCH was discovered) and she did a ton to prepare for that as well. By that time my SCH had shrunk to a narrow sliver- long but almost so narrow that it looked like it was almost healed. We were SO encouraged.

A few days after Josh’s party, my sister had to return home with her kids. I went in for another ultrasound not long after she left and this time, the SCH was no where to be found! My OB said I no longer had any restrictions, but I continued to take it easy for another two weeks. I didn’t want the tear, which had so recently healed, to rip open again. For the past week I have been back to regular life and I am starting to believe that the SCH is forever behind me.

And so God used a shockingly large tax refund, a new pregnancy, and a very scary SCH to ordain a special visit with my sister that I don’t expect to have again in my lifetime. My sister and I are very close– and if you could see the massive amount of emails we have written to each other over the years, the hours and hours of phone conversations that have taken place– you would understand what kind of sisterhood friendship I am taking about. My sister lives overseas, and I don’t get to see her much. The separation feels almost crushing to me at times, as much as I am grateful for the work they are doing. And I think the Lord just happened to heap blessings on my head when this SCH happened. What I thought was going to be the beginning of a miscarriage and a despair threatening to delve deeper than what I have probably ever experienced, instead turned into laughter and joy in having my sister nearby for many deep conversations and times of prayers.

I never thought i would be able to thank God for something as scary as having a SCH threatening my baby’s very existence. But I do. I see now how He has used it to bless me– a blessing I will remember my entire life.

God works in mysterious ways, does He not?

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:9

 

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Filed under FET, Pregnancy