Monday, April 15, 2013

Happy Ending

This past week was tough  just awful. Last Thursday (as in April 4th), I started feeling some pain in my side. Nothing awful, just a constant dull pain. The dull pain turned into uncomfortable and spread into my back by Saturday, and by Saturday night I was waking up in agonizing, mind-numbing pain. I've never felt anything like it.

I took several ibuprofen, but woke up Sunday to worsening pain, now centered in my back. After calling my parents (like a 5 year old) to ask them about the pain, we decided I should go to urgent care. After a test for a kidney stone came back negative, the doctor said it could still be a kidney stone or could be a muscle ache. Frustrating, especially since I didn't see any reason to have a muscle ache as I've been practically sedentary after learning about my pelvic fractures. The doctor told me to keep taking ibuprofen, but to go to the ER if the pain continued to get worse.

After another sleepless night on Sunday, I muscled through work on Monday to steadily worsening pain. The pain had now spread from my back to my stomach, and my skin was hypersensitive to touch. After waking up at 3AM with severe pain, I decided to go to the ER.

I've never been to the ER before, and I never want to go back. It was miserable- I've never had so many tests in my life (to rule out appendicitis, kidney stones, or anything with my ovaries) for so little result. I was relieved to find out that nothing life threatening was wrong, but even after a dose of morphine and approximately 8 hours later, I left the hospital with a fever, still in as much pain as I came in, and with a diagnosis of muscle spasms.... which the doctor thought was somehow related to my stress fractures. But after taking muscle relaxers and still not finding any relief, I called my primary care doctor, who listened to my symptoms and immediately said, 'Shingles.'

Y'all. Until a few weeks ago, I don't remember the last time I went to the doctor. I NEVER get sick. To hear the word 'shingles' was shocking. Especially since I'm not 80 years old. But as my doctor went through my symptoms, it made sense- excruciating pain on only one side of the body, fever, and skin that was hypersensitive to touch. AND I had just gotten a chicken pox booster shot the week before at his office. So the possibility was high I was either showing the first signs of shingles or having a bad reaction to the booster.

Hospital fashion... will not miss this
Thankfully, it seems to be the latter. I'm finally feeling better more than a week after the symptoms started to show themselves. I'm still not feeling 100%, but I'll take it as a good sign that I'm feeling better and have yet to see the other side of shingles, the horrible blisters.

I think this is a sign that I need to take better care of myself- the stress fractures coupled with starting a new job and looking for a new apartment (yay, finally found one!) was just too much for my body to handle at once. Now that everything is settled and my fracture is healing, hopefully I won't be seeing the inside of a doctor office for a looong time.

The highlight of my week was being able to see my family and celebrate my little brother's birthday!

Happy Birthday!
Guess he's not so little anymore... He's 23! Nothing like being with family when you aren't feeling your best!

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