I was up chugging coffee at 5am Tuesday morning to get myself and manchild ready for the two and a half hour drive to his post op appointment. I packed an overnight bag for myself and one for him, as well as making sure I had gathered all of the paperwork and medication he would need for a few days. I’m not a very gracious caregiver. In fact, I’m an asshole. I made sure to point out that I never get that sort of help when I feel like I’m going to die (and I certainly did have a slight case of death Tuesday morning). Was that a beneficial statement? Probably not. He feels shitty enough without me acting shitty too, but I am so burnt out on everything now. Life, bullshit, family, trying to do the ‘right’ thing, taking the high road even though it’s paved with horseshit. If I felt halfway decent (and pms didn’t cause me to go psycho twice a month), I wouldn’t have a problem with it. Really, the most difficult part of taking on the task of dysfunctional caregiver is stuffing my emotions and keeping my mini-outbursts to an extreme minimum.
We arrived at the clinic about two hours early and I pushed him around in a wheelchair to get his labwork, ekg and xray taken care of, then rolled him into the exam room for his appointment an hour ahead of time. He couldn’t sit up without support or walk, so the CNP scheduled him for an echo at the end of normal hours. As I was chauffeuring him from the fourth floor to the lab on the first floor, I started to experience my own version of orthostatic intolerance. I gracefully floated to the floor like dandelion fluff made of lead, right in the middle of a busy walkway. There’s a group of ninjas roving the clinic to deal with dumbasses such as myself. Their one and only purpose is to hastily transport aforementioned dumbasses to the ED. I was halfway there before I realized I was no longer pushing MC’s smelly ass around.
MC’s echo showed moderate pc effusion, bordering on large, so he was admitted, given antibiotics and anti-inflammatories to see if it could be decreased medically. A repeat echo on Friday showed no change which means he’ll have to get it drained. Centesis was scheduled for later this afternoon, then canceled after imaging because the benefits didn’t outweigh the risks. He felt 200% better after getting off of the beta blocker, so that may have been why he was symptomatic. I guess it’s a good thing he was on them, even if they made him feel like ass.
He was admitted while I was being stabilized in the ED and no one bothered to stop by to let me know what was going on with him, or you know, to see if I was okay. At least I was in the right place at the right time. I had what is known as an adrenal crisis…I ran out of go-juice. This caused my blood sugar and sodium to plummet, and my potassium to spike insanely high (8.4, and I lived to tell the tale). I got a buncha crap pushed through the IV and a couple of boluses of fluid, then I was admitted for dialysis to pull down my potassium and to monitor my heart since there were rhythm changes from hyperkalemia. Fun fact: I’ve been tested for adrenal insufficiency three times. Each time, my basal cortisol was LOW between 2 and 4, but the stim test was normal. Needing to drink five cups of coffee and take a 12 hour sudafed in order to stand up without feeling like I’m going to pass out is not normal and I’m sure it did nothing to help me out in the matter of sluggish adrenals. The stupid things we do for the people we love.
It’s a shame we didn’t get rooms next to each other or on the same floor because we both had to spend Thanksgiving in the hospital. Except for one 30 minute visit by the fuckfaces to fill me in on all of the happs in MC-land, I didn’t have any company (other than the annoying people whose job it was to wake me up every 2 hours). It was nice given the circumstances. I was discharged Friday afternoon, so I went over to MC’s prison to hang out with him and get the real details, not what Harpy thought she heard so-and-so say. My parents picked me up at 4 and took me to their house. I crashed HARD. I went to bed at 7 and didn’t get up until 10:30am. Today I feel horrible because I’m not there with my idiot and I still feel mostly dead. Fuck my life.
I’m taking oral hydrocortisone now. I was already taking florinef as needed for POTS – this is now a daily thing for aldosterone deficiency. I have an appointment with an endocrinologist the second week in December and a consult at the GI department to investigate why I’ve got blood coming out of my holes (hint: it’s probably Crohn’s); something that’s impossible to hide when all output is measured. My stomach is killing me, and between us, I may have vomited blood a few times in the past month and again when they sent me a turkey sandwich on wheat for lunch on Thanksgiving. Perhaps I shouldn’t have been so quick to quit the pantoprazole. Stress, man. It’s killer. To be completely honest, I’m bummed I lived through this. I wasn’t trying to kill myself, but sudden death doesn’t sound so bad. I’ve had it.