My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Friday, April 24, 2015

More Things To Share

It's a little after 2am and I'm wide awake. I had a busy day yesterday and crashed fairly early - maybe even before 8pm. I woke up at 10:30 WIDE AWAKE and have been awake since then. I figured I should get some of the information I received yesterday committed to paper/computer screen before I forget or lose context. It was a busy day, for real.

So yesterday was my follow up with my general practitioner to go over possible causes for the crazy gut pain. Just for the record... I've been having pretty severe pain in my lower left side, right in front of my left hip, in fairly consistent cycles for about 20 months. For many, many months I wondered and worried what this could possibly be but couldn't afford any extensive medical exams or testing because I'm still one of those folks who don't have affordable health care. Or insurance. Or medicaid because it wasn't expanded in my state. The pain has been particularly worrisome because the pretty strong pain meds that I take for my back and other pain issues haven't been able to cover the pain.

Since being approved for charity care through a local health care system I have been able to go back to my primary doctor and have had several diagnostic tests done - an MRI, ultrasound, x-rays and a CT scan with contrast. We've been able to rule out several things during this process and have uncovered a few issues that are possible contributors to my pain but no one big thing that would be the source of such great pain. I had a loooong talk with my doctor today...

And side note, if you're local to me my doctor is, quite possibly the best in the area and certainly the best doctor I've ever had - and I've had quite a few.

Here are some of the known issues that I have that could contribute to pain in the general area of the crazy gut pain: fibromyalgia, herniated discs/degenerative disc disease/osteoarthritis, sciatica, piriformis syndrome, interstitial cystitis, a small ovarian cyst, fatty liver disease (non-alcoholic, just for the record) an umbilical hernia. Many Most All of these can be contributors to discomfort. I do have random pain that isn't isolated to the exact area of the crazy gut pain but the cgp is always located in the exact same location. Always.

We have eliminated so, so SO many potential pain issues in that area. I'm fine from a gyn standpoint which was first and greatest concern. The cyst I have is small and hasn't changed from when it was first noticed when my back pain first started four years ago. We have ruled out diverticulitis or any other scary intestinal stuff. I do have pretty sluggish bowels due to the meds I'm on, pain meds in particular slow things down. Gallbladder checks out fine so no referred pain from that. Same with appendix, it's on the opposite side but no referred issues there.

After a looooong discussion with my doctor today we're going to treat some of the smaller issues to see if we get a cumulative reduction in pain. I'm being treated for irritible bowel syndrome as those meds will keep things moving at a healthy rhythm. They're sending me to the urologist to get the interstitial cystitis back under control.

He's also starting me on an anti-depressant because there is such a close pain/depression relationship. One causes the other in most cases.

The only thing we don't know is whether the pain is related to my back problems. It could be a compressed nerve, something as simple as that. But we can say with some certainty that there is no singular major issue causing the pain and I guess I'd rather have pain for no good reason than have pain because of stuff being scary wrong. It's frustrating news but it's not bad news.

Enough about me. That was just the first part of my day. I left my dr and went to pick up prescriptions from my mom's doctor for her. They wouldn't give them to me which was a huge aggravation. The receptionist was rude and I'm just over those people. Then I went to pick up a few groceries and sneak at peek at Austin on his first day as a bagger at our local supermarket. I really needed to pick things up but.... yeah, I wanted to check up on him. He asked me to make sure I went with Tasha to her doctor appointment since he couldn't go and I agreed.

Tasha's doctors office was crazy busy and way behind schedule. We waited FOREVER but it's ok because it's our last prenatal visit. After much discussion with Tasha's midwife they've got her set up to be induced on Tuesday night, starting at 9pm. At the beginning they just administer stuff to get the cervix favorable for a few hours and then they start the pitocin. Her midwife will come in around 8 to check her and break her water and then it's just... go until she gets here. This means that Cosette will likely be born on MY BIRTHDAY!!! It's going to be painful for me to sit around all of that time but my mom and I will camp out in the waiting room and be there until we get to see a baby. I'm planning to take one of our outdoor chairs because they have enough give that it doesn't hurt my back as bad as sitting in a regular waiting room chair would. And I'm planning to take my pain meds because... childbirth shouldn't be painful for grandmas.

We left Tasha's doctor office and went to try again to get my mom's prescriptions. I won't go into the details of all the drama they put her through but I tell you what, if you are a pain patient you are treated like a criminal, you and everyone associated with you. It's quite frustrating. And every time my mom needs prescriptions refilled the procedure has changed from the last time. I hate all the money we spend for me to go to the pain clinic but honestly, they have a very upfront process and never make me feel bad.

Around the time my mom walked into her dr office I called Austin to see if he knew when he was getting off work because somebody would need to pick him up. It turned out that he was just then leaving. He had started work at 10 and by this point it was around 3:30. He didn't have money to get lunch so he had not eaten all day. My mom realized that her quick stop to pick up prescriptions was going to be more of an ordeal so I went ahead to pick Austin up and get him something to eat. He had gotten enough in tips to buy his own meal! Yay!

Mom's doctor's office is only about a mile from the grocery store where Austin is working so it wasn't like I was driving all over town but I did have to go back to get her after I got Austin and drove through the DQ to get him a bite. It was just that I had been through two extended doctor appointments already in addition to buying groceries and I was in so much pain and was dying to get home. My mom was upset, I was upset but the news that Cosette is going to be here next week really lightened the mood. I did have to explain the induction process to Austin since he wasn't at the dr. appointment. I think that was more birds and bees talk than I have ever given any of my kids. You know it's a weird day when you discuss softening the cervix with two of your male children (because later I had to explain to Cody as he and Marquee are trying to be able to come up and be there when Cosette is born. I didn't want them to have to sit through all that cervix softening).

At any rate... Little Kitty is protesting the fact that there is a laptop on my lap where he wants to be. I still need to email my attorney to update him about my dr appointment because I have a feeling that not sleeping tonight is going to make for a fairly grumpy and unproductive day tomorrow today. We're having hardwood floors installed on the main level tomorrow so.... yeah.... don't think I'll be catching up on my beauty sleep so I should be more than fairly grumpy! I went ahead and called in all my prescription refills and washed grapes to snack on while I'm awake. It's got the cats all confused. This is supposed to be sleepy time. I'm listening to the Broadway channel on the satellite so it's been kinda fun or at least not miserable.

So good night/ good morning, whatever. Love and hugs!