Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Invisible Enemies and the Kick Inside

My back pain returned with such a vengence. I was fine in the morning, and in pain, but dealing with it in the afternoon, and then suddenly, in the middle of watching a movie at home, I got to redefine ten on my pain scale again. I thought I'd met it before, and I know I haven't experienced labor yet. I realize now that one of the key characteristics of this higher level is that no thought is involved. There is no room for brain activity when I'm at that level of pain, just a primative animal fear as an invisible assailant relentlessly gnaws on me.

There is no getting to detach from the pain and be survival girl thinking rational thoughts despite some fog. I was not even thinking "I'm going to die" or "I must make this stop." This was not the thing I imagined I'd feel if shot, and crawling toward some survival ability like a movie character. It is pure, overwhelming, pain. It replaced me. I've been told I have a high tolerance for pain numerous times in the past. I think the definition of pain is the key to that sentiment. I have no tolerance for this. I needed an off button and could barely even think to ask for help. I understand better now why some people never call 911 in emergencies.

I fell to the floor in agony and tears streamed down my face and I started to hear an odd wailing noise that I realized was coming from me. So, yeah, I spent last night at the hospital. Glenn had dialed the phone before my language skills had returned to tell him what was wrong. At least they take pregnant people right to the ER part of the baby ward pronto, no regular emergency room crap this time. Can you imagine...New Year's Day? I'd still be there.

So at the hospital I was tears and drool, biting the pillow case. They put the kid on a fetal monitor and made sure I wasn't in preterm labor, then ran labs. They gave me Demerol in my IV and a special heating pad that had warm water pusling through it while testing me for a million things and ultrasounding my guts and ruled out kidney and urinary infections, they looked at my kidneys for stones, and made sure there was no aneurysm involved in the aorta and looked at the cysts I have on my liver that have been being watched but didn't think that was the cause. It took another dose of Demerol for me to think maybe I'm okay with living. I asked the nurse if she could just hit me with a really big hammer since I'm not allowed to take so many things while pregnant and I am allergic to opiates (morphine was their first choice to give me). She said they were funny about hammers there at the hospital.

Kicky McKick is doing just fine in there. In the end because they ruled out the deadly things and because of where it is and the extremely specific narrow line of pain it is, they think maybe I injured my back somehow and aggravated it the other day or it's a nerve compression problem. If it is muscles they should be better in a couple of days, if it's nerves I'll have to keep experiencing it until a neurologist figures it out apparently. I have had seized muscles many times in my life and never have I felt anything Close to this. Once again, there is another mystery.

I never knew, by the way, just how much a baby kicks. I mean people have put my hand on their pregnant stomachs and had me feel a kicking baby, and I've heard "oh! that was quite a kick!" from people before, but I didn't know it was like this nearly constant writhing, punching little storm in the guts. I can actually See the baby kicking some of the time now, which was entertainment as I spaced out a bit with the drugs. I asked the doctor if all babies are so busy and she said "the healthy ones!" There is Some possibility my little slam dancer caused some kind of nerve freak out with her activity, but it wasn't the top of their list of guesses.

This entry was brought to you by Demerol, the only "Real" drug I've taken in 17 years of being clean and sober, last seen when all four wisdom teeth were ripped out over a decade ago. It's my new best friend.

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At 3:16 PM, Anonymous Ken said...

Woof! Hang in there, Bethany! I am sending you warm fuzzy thoughts!


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