Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Another Poopy Day

Today was another one of those days. Well actually, for the past maybe week or so, I've been experiencing pain in both of my ankles when I walk. I know Lupus is a disease that can involve the joints i.e. rhumatoid arthritis, however I've never really experienced such symptoms. I do have avascular necrosis in my left hip and right knee, however that can be closer equated to prednisone as opposed to Lupus specifically. The only other time I remember feeling pain in my joints was a few years ago when I got an infection. Septic Arthritis. I spoke about it in another entry. That entry is here.

On that occasion, the infection in my knee had gotten so bad that I couldn't even walk anymore. Luckily it didn't get into my bloodstream and it didn't damage the cartilage in my knee. By the time I went to emergency and was seen, it was very apparent that I had some sort of infection. I was freezing and wanting to be covered up with multiple warm blankets, yet I was sweating like crazy. I was shivering and my temperature was through the roof. I remember lying there in pain, and I could feel pain just pulsing through my joints, one joint at a time. For example, first the joints for all of my fingers on both hands would throb for about 2 seconds. Then, my wrists. Then, my elbows. Then, my hips. Then, my knees. It continued like that all the way down my body until it teached the joints in all of my toes. It wasn't an excruciating pain, but it was definitely pain. At the same time, I've experienced varying degrees of pain in my life, so whenever I say something wasn't that painful, it's comparitively speaking. For someone else, that just may have been excruciating.

That being said, as soon as that pain reached my toes, as if on queue, a nurse walked in with a syringe full of morphine. Not diluting it in a saline bag, the nurse injected the morphine right into the IV that was in my hand. I'm not sure how safe that is, but the good news is that I felt the effects of the morphine instantly...and I never experienced that kind of joint pain again.

My fear is that this is some sort of Lupus flare. I hope it isn't...as I simply don't have time for a Lupus flare right now. I don't have time to be sick. At any rate, I'm still waiting for those blood results to come back to see if I do have active Lupus. The blood tests were taking last week wednesday, and as of yesterday, the results were still pending. They're taking forever.

I went to work today as usual. I knew I wasn't feeling great...my stomach was kinda iffy. But I didn't want to miss work again as I missed work on the 11th. I wanted to try...and that's just what I did. I got out of bed, took some pain pills, and off to work I went.

When I got to work...I just felt tired. Luckily I'd be able to just sit at my desk and not move. Wrong. From 10:30am-12:00pm, I'd have a meeting with my manager and two other people. My stomach wasn't well and I just didn't want to deal with it. However, considering the fact that I only work once a week, my manager has to schedule me whenever she can.

I got through work ok. My dad picked me up and brought me home. When I got home, I decided that I should go to a nearby store and pick up some shampoo. So I did. On the way home, I decided to stop at 7-eleven for a slurpee, so I got off of the bus one bus stop early. The walk from 7-eleven to my house is probably a 5 or 6 minute walk. When I got into the 7-eleven, I began to seriously regret getting off of the bus. I wasn't feeling well. When I got my slurpee and went to the cashier to pay, I stood there, hunched over, waiting for her to come. I paid and quickly went outside. I felt warm all over so I took my hood off. I sat down on the ledge of the building and put my head down. I took some deep breaths. I then decided that the faster I got home, the faster I'd be able to just lie down properly.

So I walked. I made it to the stoplight, which pretty much signifies the midway point between my house and the 7-eleven. I waited for the light to change. I was happy the light was red as it gave me time to hunch myself over again and take some deep breaths. I could feel my heart beating loudly through my thick jacket. The light changed and I quickly crossed the street. I began that final walk...the home stretch. As I walked, I reached into my pocket and got my keys. I didn't want to do that when I was at the door. That would waste more time.

I was relieved when I finally hit my street. Thankfully I live on a small street with few houses, so it wasn't a long walk once I got onto my street. When I reached the end of my driveway, I said "Thank you Jesus" out loud. I couldn't be happier to get home.

When I got inside, I dropped the bag holding my shampoo and conditioner. I got the largest bottles which made them a bit heavy. I closed the door and locked it. I didn't know if I should just leave the bottles there and get them after I rested, or if I should pick them up. I decided to pick them up. My Mom wasn't due home for a few hours, but with my luck, she'd come home early and step on my shampoo and possibly hurt herself. So I put my slurpee on a ledge just behind the door, scooped up my shampoo and conditioner, and headed for the couch. I threw myself on the couch and could feel my stomach turning. I honestly felt like I could throw up. I unzipped my boots and my jacket and removed my scarf. I went upstairs in anticipation of throwing up...but I didn't. But I did feel really hot. I tore off my work clothes and threw myself on my bed, wearing only a wife beater (or I've heard of it being called a 'boy beater' if a lady wears it) and my underwear. I felt so awful. I rolled around, back and forth, on my bed until I found a comfortable position. I took some slow deep breaths to calm my beating heart. After about 10 minutes or less....I was fine.

It's not the first time I've experienced such a thing. I know it's important for me to get back into the gym, but I'm afraid because of episodes like this. If I were to pull something like that in a gym, they'd definitely be dialing 9-11. And who could blame them?? I wouldn't know what to do either.

I guess it all goes back to whether or not this home hemodialysis thing is going to leave me feeling better. I certainly hope so. All of the equipment is in place and I'm ready to go. I just hope it makes me feel better. And again, I hope I'm not going through a flare. I have so many classes that I signed up for (ie multiple cake decorating classes and my math class which is supposed to end on April 23 and I'm no where near done). So I'll keep my fingers crossed...and continue praying.

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