Saturday, July 3, 2010

Saturday at Scripps

It's been quite the adventure this past week. Last Saturday, I woke up early (reminiscent of Ironman training...), rode 4+ hours, spent time at the beach for a volunteer clean-up/hanging out with friends, and Nathaniel and I went out for dinner with another couple. We had sushi - it was delicious. I ordered 2 rolls - no recollection of the first, but the second was Alaskan.


And then I polished off half of his.

What can I say? He was enjoying his Kirin beer a little too much to notice, and I was the designated driver. But that's what couples do, right? The sacrifice for NOT drinking, is enjoying an extra piece of sushi or four. Perfect.

I think I've figured out how to negotiate my designated driver availability for the next 4-6 months. EXTRA SUSHI. I LOVE it!

Here's the good news - My INR number (indicator of the body's ability to clot blood) is 0.1 under where it needs to be before I can be release. That was early this morning. Hopefully with another day of Coumadin and Lovenox in my system, I'll be within the ideal 2.0 - 3.0 range and can head home.


Aside from Nathaniel's coffee, sushi, snuggles from House Monsters, and any sense of privacy - it hasn't been that bad here. But still - going home tomorrow, on the 4th of July - would be awesome.

In the interim, a few observations from the hospital...

* Hospitals should totally supply robes in addition to gowns. Seriously. Aside from flashing the ENTIRE ward with my right boob, I didn't let any parts of my person become exposed. But man - I was being SO careful, keeping the back of my gown shut (image: Jack Nicholson in "As good as it gets"), that I simply forgot about the front. Luckily my nurse saw me and quickly remedied the situation. Whoops!

*If you are nice to the nurses, they try to work deals so you get a private room. Donating extra baked goods never hurts...thanks to some WONDERFUL cupcakes from Molly - what can I say? That I wanted to bury my head in the cupcake box? YES. YES I DID. But I didn't...

*When Motrin didn't take away my headache and diet coke did - well, let's just say that's interesting and leave it at that. No, I'm not addicted...I just really like the stuff!

*I was so excited when I received a package of flowers, I ran to the nurse's station to ask for scissors and then ran back to my room to open the box. Only when I was tearing away at said box, did I realize that - as the girl on blood thinners - I would need to be careful when I ran with scissors. Not that I make a general practice out of it - but as I am clumsy... I'll need to be careful around sharp objects.

*Please be friendly to the staff and volunteers. I DO NOT think, for a second, that they ever take pleasure in making patients hurt or denying a high quality of care. But the amount of abuse they take from patients and patient's families was astonishing. There were times when I couldn't believe my ears. Next time you're in the hospital and on the road to recovery - thank your nurse and doctor AND the volunteers who stop by.

*I made friends with not one, not two, but THREE Canine Companions. The volunteers and their volunteer dogs were FANTASTIC and brightened my day considerably.

*My lower right leg and foot has decreased considerably in size. A few days ago, it was "obese". Now it's just "chunky" or "big boned" - sort of like Tabbitha.... But in all honesty, my right leg is almost the same size as my left leg. There is hope!

*Even though swimming is okay with Coumadin - I CAN NO LONGER open water swim. Why? Because of sharks - IF I was bitten, there is NO WAY I could survive the swim back to shore - the blood loss would be too great. Then again, that's assuming that I could make it back to shore without getting devoured in the first place. I think I've found a LEGITIMATE excuse to not OW ocean swim. Awesome!

*After years upon years upon years of being on birth control pills, and suddenly stopping them mid-cycle - well, let's just say it's not a great feeling. My uterus hates me. That's all I'm saying.

*Visitors, emails, phone calls, flowers, notes, baked goods, diet coke, clean underwear, toiletries...all wonderful. I can't thank people enough for the love and support I received.... friends in the area, complete strangers who read my blog and send flowers (THANK YOU - I don't know who you are - but I so appreciate you, the note, and the beautiful bouquet). Nathaniel and I are both grateful.

*I actually feel sorry for my veins. I know it's nothing like what some chronically ill patients endure - but because of all the meds and because I've been poked so many times, my veins have decided to shrivel up into my person. There were tears yesterday when they couldn't get in a new IV line...followed by a beautiful bruise.

*REAL clothes - wonderful. I could have worn a different outfit every day - but the comfy sweat pants and sports bra were the big hit.

*I think I make the EKG people nervous - for the first few days I felt as though I was being followed...either my nurses or the techs would walk past me - sitting outside with friends or plunking the piano keys in the lobby - to make sure that my low heart rate wasn't an indicator that I was passed out on the floor. I really did feel sorry for the disheveled looking guy when my battery pack died.

*I avoided the green jello. Nuclear green jello.

*I can be aware of and NOT EAT a small bag of Peanut M&Ms for three days before the bag is ripped open. Personally - I was impressed.

Thank you again to All - I am forever and eternally grateful.
With love,


Steve said...

Glad you are doing better. :)

Beth said...

Three cheers for (hopefully) going home today!!! What a great present on the holiday! :)

Oh and I know what you mean about being nice to the nurses/staff in the hospital. They are only human too and trust me when I say, the nice people DO get better care. I'm sure you got the best!! :)

San said...

OMFG, I just read what happened to you. Glad you are still alive!!!! This was a close call.

Sending you a big hug, happy belated anniversary and good luck.

Hope you get out today.

Cheers, San

kT said...

So happy to hear you're doing well--from another total stranger who finds you totally inspiring even when you're NOT in a life or death situation!

cherelli said...

So glad there are always things to look forward to....

I had a friend recently in hospital; she too said the amount of abuse nurses take is terrible and that we should take time to always show appreciation for what they put up with.

fingers crossed you are released ASAP! Oh, and you are now SO totally justified in not swimming in the ocean. Though I've always said that circling shark was a worthy excuse.

~L said...

Good INR'll be home soon!
Thank you for the hospital staff kudos. Thanks for the great update.

Teresa said...

As always, you find humor in everything. Hurry home!

Michelle Simmons said...

Oh I hope you're home by the time you read this, Marit! What an ordeal. I keep telling Scott about your story... a little more every day... and it just seems so surreal to me.

Glad you avoided the green jello. Yuck. ;)

T said...

Going off the pill AND taking blood thinners? Welcome to heavier periods than you've EVER imagined possible. Sorry for the TMI, but I've been there... It's not that bad, though, ultimately. You'll make it through :)

Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

Hooray for possibly being able to go home! I'm so glad you're doing better! And I totally agree, you now have a completely legitimate excuse not to OWS anymore! :)

Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete said...

I'm so happy that you are doing better (sorry to sound so redundant). Be careful not to flash anyone anymore! ;)

Herrad said...

Hi Marit,
Hope you are home today.

MaineSport said...

Marit- I'm so glad you're close to leaving. That will allow you to move along on the path of recovery. I totally know what you mean about the HR monitor. It was fun playing games with the nurses. All the best!

Libby said...

hey marit
I'm one of those pesky anonymous blog followers... I am so happy that you are ok. Wow, what a scare. Its amazing that you've kept such good perspective and a great attitude through everything you've been through this year, but this is unbelievable. So glad that you had a great doctor that caught it and that you are alive. Many hugs from florida and I'm glad that things are going in the right direction. Heal up fast and take it easy on yourself. More thoughts and prayers from the other side of the country :)
ps- i left a comment from my work computer but I think it blocked it... anyhow sorry if you get two comments, but the more love the better!

Rebecca DeWire said...

It is nice to hear that you recognize how hard it is to be a nurse. I am a nurse and worked on an inpatient surgical floor for 6 months and then decided that this job is not healthy for me. I am sure they love having you as a patient :)

Midwestern Dot said...

I'm sure you are highly entertaining to have in the hospital and are a breath of fresh air for the staff.
Wow, 3 canine buddies! That would brighten my day too!!
Love the shark theory!

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