29 May 2010

I'm Connected!

Connected, it's one of those fashionable words with a positive feel. I am experiencing another side of the word (connected). Here I am in the hospital looking back at the past week. I am really connected. I am connected to a IV containing my antibiotics, a two-way catheter which is flushing my bladder, I am connected to the TENS machine and perhaps I will receive a blood transfusion this weekend. What happened?

Two days before my radioactive iodine treatment we found blood and blood clots in my urine. Seeing as I had been using a catheter , the nurses weren't too alarmed. Blood samples were taken on a daily basis and by the time I got to the Department where my iodine treatment was to take place the doctors were alarmed. My blood-work showed that there must be an infection somewhere. Before they could treat me with the iodine they needed to make sure that it was safe to do so. They asked me if I had any idea what it could be and I told them that the only new problem was blood in my urine. When I told them about the blood clot and it's size, they figured that it couldn't be a problem in my bladder but that it must be a problem in my kidneys. To be on the safe side they had a sonogram made of my kidneys. In one of the kidneys it seemed as if they were three kidney stones. However, there was no obstruction. The doctors decided to go ahead with the treatment.

Mom came in with me to look after me as I have not mobilized yet. This meant that she was going to catch radiation, something I was not happy about but the doctors assured us that she would be fine and she chose to go ahead with it. What moms do to help the kids! I was feeling under the weather and went from bad to worse. By Sunday evening I felt so bad that the doctors came to check me out. I was administered antibiotics and diuretics as my lungs had fluid in them. Blood samples were taken, but the doctors believed that I had pneumonia. Everything else went okay with the iodine treatment and mom and I came out on Monday afternoon. I went to a brand-new department 4B , yet a new place to get accustomed to. We were off on a bad start. By day 2 it became apparent to me that no department was willing to admit me due to my radioactive treatment. It seemed as if the nurses had no idea why I was here and even the Doctor asked me why I was in her department. My patience was really tested when they forgot my antibiotics. Marcus had mentioned this to them and when I tried to reach them in the evening it took me three hours to get their attention. The, I think was a Russian one, nurse finally came to my room after three hours of waiting. I told her that I had not had my antibiotics that day. They had checked it off administration and refused to give me a daily dose. I told the nurse that I wanted her to sort out the problem and that it is not a good idea to stop taking antibiotics once one has started the cure. She told me it was my problem and my frustration and that she wanted to go home. I said, "I beg your pardon?". The nurse went ahead and repeated what she had said. I was livid! It took another nurse to calm me down. I went to sleep without the antibiotics and in the morning I addressed the matter. In the course of the week, because I had threatened to make a formal complaint, the nurse made her apologies, the nurse who had made the mistake acknowledged it and the Doctor got with my program.

So what else happened this week, medically;
· I got pneumonia.
I got kidney stones.

· I turned anaemic.
· And my white blood cell count dropped.
To top it all off, the pin in my right arm needs to be replaced in a new to the scheduled surgery. It was not a muscle that had torn. Thanks to Doctor Lips an x-ray was made to check was wrong. Further strain could have caused a lot of damage.

I'm sure you can imagine that this week has been an all time low, emotionally and mentally. It has taken everything I've got to crawl out of his deep deep valley. For the first time in three years I wasn't sure I was going to make it. I have always been so afraid of infections. This weekend however it looks like I'm going to get over this.
Like I said earlier I had my iodine treatment last week. That means that I couldn't see Kiara for 10 days. I get to see her tomorrow, what a treat! How do you even start to tell your 10-year-old daughter the above.

Lots of suprises too though this week, my sister bringing me food, and Twitter friends helping out, like Henk who came by to bring my bed outside. The first sunlight in a month. This stuff kickstarts recovery, not to mention all the people working on my house!

20 May 2010


Last weekend, after my shoulder muscle tore, I had no choice but to take a brake from mobilising. I used the time to become myself again. Bye-bye Dexamethasone moustache and hairy legs, and Marcus was so kind as to trim my hair!

Not only did I nurture my outer body, I also nurtured my inner body and wen
t to the hospital chapel
to attend a service. They brought me there in my bed which was interesting.

In the meantime, at home friends have been working hard , helping to fix my home. We are moving along nicely!

This week has been hectic with scans and doctor's visits. As of tomorrow I am moving to the nuclear department for my Iodine treatment. So no visitors until mid next week. Will communicate online.

12 May 2010

Kiara's visit

What can I say? ;-)...

"You are my Sunshine,

My only sunshine.

You make me happy

When skies are grey.

You'll never know, dear

How much I love you.

Please don't take my sunshine away".

Written by former State Governor Jimmie Davis and Charles Mitchell;copywright 1940 and 1977 by Peer International Corporation.
This is one oe two official songs for the State of Louisiana.

11 May 2010

Progression each day

Since my last post the emphasis has been on mobilisation.
babysteps is the answer to fi
nding a way to walk again. Each morning I wake up with two goals (a realistic one, and one that pushes boundries). It started out with just being able to sit up in bed. Yesterday I walked 6 meters in total to the door and back. Two days ago my stitches were removed. The 27 stitches somehow seem to have constricted me a bit, because my back now seems to be more relaxed, allowing me to move better.

Up to now I
have managed to reach my secondary goal each day. The great thing is that, the question of will I be able to walk again, has been answered in a time period of less than two weeks. Yes, for sure, I will be able to walk again with walking aids. I will not venture too much beyond that fact as right now the feeling in my legs is not good enough to walk safely without an aid.

From my hospital
bed, my life goes on partially virtually and partially IRL.
I have started to have visitors. Preferably one by one, as I still get tired quickly. It was especially nice to see Aldith back after her trip. She brought me back some sunkist fruit...lovely!

It was quite funny because last night I was telling on
e of the nurses that I had lost 3 litres of blood during my operation. She told me that that was impossible as women only have 4 to 5 liters of blood. I said that that is what I remembered that the surgeon had told me. She said that it was probably more like 300cc and then suggested to look it up in the operation report. She came back looking rather flabbergasted as it was actually more than 3 litres. I was 3,5 which is 7/10 of what I have. She explained to me that the blood that is given to you is also immediately replaced by the body. This alone is an energy consuming matter. No wonder I felt much better after the second blood transfusion. At least now, my anaemia is under control.

I spend quite
a lot of time on the computer. I check my mail, do my payments, check things for the new house, help coordinate the changes at my own house. I even signed the contract for my new appartment! I entertain myself on social media like Twitter and Facebook and all this is so great to keep my mind off only being or feeling ill.

The Twitter society has been especia
lly helpful. They are around in the middel of the night when you wake up and feel bored. But they have also sent met loads of cards, visited me and even helped me fix my house. I hope that the Queens communication officers tell her that social media are called social media because they are infact SOCIAL. *I am referring to the Queen's speach in which she said that internet had an isolating effect on people.*

Being in the hospital this long in the neurology department is quite strenuous. You share the room with 3 other cases and usually they are pretty severe cases. Sleep is difficult because there is always something going on in the middel of the night. People crying it out, new people being admitted, you name it... I seem to have landed in the room with a television connection.
I have Aldith as a relative, and my two neighbors are also family to Dutch Celebs Yvette Forster
and my favorite upcoming actor Chemsedinne Amar.

So you might wonder how Kiara is doing with all this going on. I don't get to see her that much because she is being kept busy. The disappointment of not going to Brazil was something I wanted to compensate. Melvin and my Aunt Tirza suggested to take Kiara and Jermaine to Center Parks. They left on Tuesday and came back on Friday. Melvin went shopping with them for mother's day. On Saturday Kiara suprised me with a visit as she wouldn't be able to see me on Sunday. She had made me a decorated CD at school with a poem and she also bought me a silver charm of a bird that looks like it is about to take off in flight. How appropriate! I miss her dearly. She is now camping with Jesse her schoolfriend and tonight, she is off to Zevenaar to stay with my parents until the end of the week. All in all she has had a lovely holiday. When the holiday is over, I hope to see her more often.

I would at this point also lik
e to mention that my roomy of the last admittion, has also been re-admitted last night. Nicole came in with an unknown neurological complication. After many negative tests, they are opening her skull today for brainsamples. The tragedy is that she is hoping it is cancer...because that is the only way they might be able to treat her. Nicole...I am thinking of you all day. Hang in there girl.