Tuesday, September 13, 2011


So I thought I'd blog about my amazing journey with my gallbladder. (<-- if there was ever a use for a sarcastic font, it would have been that sentence...)

For 30 years my gallbladder and I had been on great terms. I didn't bother it, it didn't bother me. Then one night, very randomly, I awoke with pain in my tummy. At first I thought I was just hungry, so I got up, drank a glass of water and forced down a piece of bread. That didn't help. So I took some Tums, wondering if it was just a random bout of indigestion. That didn't help. Apparently I wasn't being very quiet in my uncomfortable-ness and I woke up Nick, who suggested Pepto. So I tried that. At the time, I wasn't sure if it had just run it's course or if the Pepto helped. Eventually it subsided and I went back to sleep and forgot all about it.

The next night, immediately after dinner (that we had company over for, mind you), I got that feeling again. I rushed straight to the bathroom for more Pepto, hoping it was my lucky cure and that would be that. Within 2 minutes, I was doubled over in pain, sweating like I've never sweat before and I could hardly breathe from the pain. Thank goodness my dad was here and he stayed with Ben while Nick took me off to urgent care (I would have gone to the ER but the UC is literally a block & a half from my house and I was in such pain, I wanted help NOW). I have never felt pain like that before - even when I was in labor and they put my epidural in wrong, I've never been in more pain in my life.

Determination? Probably gallbladder related.

Say what? Gallbladder? What? Traitor.

So the doc gave me a shot of something completely wonderful that helped with the pain, took some samples from me to run tests and wanted me to follow up with an ultrasound on Monday. I called my own doctor on Monday and she asked questions and said she tended to agree - it was probably my gallbladder. She sent me over to St. Luke's for an ultrasound and we'd go from there.

From there was I referred to a surgeon at Boise Surgical Group. Apparently my ultrasound showed lots of stones. And I won the lucky pool of being a woman, of child bearing age, had in fact, born a child, was white and overweight. Ding, ding, ding, ding! I fit all the requirements for a faulty gallbladder. The surgeon so nicely told me, it wasn't a matter of "if" I had another attack, at this point, it was a matter of "when". We discussed our already arranged plans to go to Chicago and booked my surgery for our return.


I ate cautiously. Timidly. I want to say we were fairly good eaters before. I'm sure there's loads of room for improvement, but we don't eat a lot of fried or processed foods. Sure, we eat out, but far less than a lot of people, and even when we go out, I feel I try to choose more healthy options. Certainly I know the cobb salad from Red Robin isn't that great when you add in the bacon, the hard boiled egg, the cheese, the blue cheese, the ranch... but it's got to be better than a double cheeseburger, right? Right? Anyway, I digress.

We went to Chicago. I ate a lot of salads. I ate a lot of sandwiches. Apparently I got too lazy or the combination of eating out so many meals, so many days in a row caught up with me, but I had another attack the Thursday before we left. Poor Ben. We had just gotten to the park, there wasn't a soul around and he was running and playing and having a good time and bam. It hit me. I got him back in the stroller as quick as I could (despite his athletic back arching to try to get out of it) and practically ran back to the hotel, trying not to cry, apologizing to Ben with each gasping breath and made it to the hotel before I barfed up everything I'd eaten that morning.

While my little boy watched.

And said "whoa"

Being a mama doesn't break for being ill. I spent most of the rest of the day recovering from my attack, apologizing to Ben for wrecking his day of play and being scared to eat anything else.

So home we went and I made it another week without any other problems. I had my surgery on the 9th and now I'm waiting to feel better. I thought I'd have Saturday & Sunday to start to feel like normal, but I was so paranoid about being in pain from surgery (my very first surgery, by the way), that I was on the dot to take my pills. I think it was either the dose or the frequency, but something did not settle right with me and I spent all of Saturday and some of Sunday puking about every half hour or so. I finally let Nick take me to the ER Sunday morning-ish where they gave me an IV to replace the fluids I hadn't been able to keep down, took some x-rays to make sure my surgery was healing well and more samples for yet more tests.

Determination? Probably a reaction to my pain pill. Both doctor & nurse were confused why I wasn't also prescribed an anti-nausea pill with my pain bill, but they hooked me up right & tight and I've been feeling better ever since. I actually have an appetite now, have been able to keep everything I've eaten down and I'm starting to get back to normal.

Today Nick went back to work and I had a regular day with Ben. By his nap time, I was exhausted and spent the next 3 glorious hours on the couch with my new book (sooooo good). I made dinner, had snuggles with my kid and except a tenderness in my tummy and achiness where my incisions are, I feel pretty good.

1 comment:

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