Problems that is! So if having a putrid, festering hole in my belly were not enough, my body decided to betray me even more. A few weeks ago my back started feeling stiff. I figured it was from sitting around for 8 weeks. I started to feel better so I decide to take a walk with the baby. It was a short walk on a flat road. Nothing strenuous. Apparently that was WAAAAAY too much excitement for my post partum self. I always tell Chuck I am just not made to exercise. At then end of the walk as I folded up the stroller my back went into a spasm. OK, lesson learned no more exercise. I am more than ok with that. I figure I will rest overnight and wake up refreshed. NOPE!!! I woke up in even more pain. It was so bad that I needed to go to the ER. This time we opt for a local hospital. After an exam, blood tests and some X-rays they determined due to 8 weeks of inactivity my core muscles had atrophied, who knew that had any strength to them to begin with? Hmm, you learn something new everyday! So due to the weak muscles my back had destabilized and went into a spasm that would not release. Oh, and since I was 8 weeks post partum with a seroma (aka the hole) they had to check it to make sure that wasn't the issue. So now in addition to everyone in the Boston area seeing my "area" we can add many members of the Central MA medical community to the list as well. They called in everyone, its not everyday you see a seroma...glad I could help with their education. So they prescribe a muscle relaxant and send me on my way. I sleep pretty much until the next morning. Monday, November 18th. My 7th wedding anniversary. I wake up a little before 5 a.m. and try to get up to go to the bathroom. I can not move. Chuck needs to help me. I take a Motrin and head back to bed. Chuck takes the baby to his mom's house since I can't care for her while taking the muscle relaxant. The girls get up and I have to help get them ready for school. It takes all I have to get out of bed. I have NEVER felt pain like this before. It feels like a 500 pound Sumo wrestler is sitting on my shoulders and my lower back doesn't feel connected to my spine....my body feels like a real live Jenga game. I feel like any minute my torso is going to fall right off of my hips. The pain is beyond description. With every step I am screaming out some sort of primal, guttural noise. You would think the girls would show some type of concern, maybe have a little compassion for their mother who at this point is on the verge of passing out from the pain. Literally. All of the sudden it sounds like a swarm of a thousand bees are buzzing in my ears and my vision is getting kind of tunneled. Holy crap! I am about to pass out while home alone with Sara and Anna. I force myself onto the couch and have Sara grab me the phone. I have to call 911. I can't pass out here without another adult in the house. Not so much for the psychological harm that may be caused my children seeing me in that state...more so for the fact that they probably wouldn't notice. They would go about their morning and see this as a golden opportunity to eat Ho-ho's and Pringles for breakfast and though Sara knows how to call 911 I am almost certain she wouldn't because if I were unconscious she would have a slight opportunity of getting out of school for the day (her life's mission). She wasn't going to do anything to jeopardize that chance, no matter how slight....if that meant sacrificing her mother's life for the greater good, so be it. So back to the 911 call. I have never called 911 before. In my book that is reserved for true emergencies...not the BS calls I have seen made while working in the ER. I have seen someone take an ambulance to the ER for their baby's diaper rash and once a dad called a rescue when his children were around someone with the swine flu, mind you they had no symptoms and were perfectly healthy but I guess you can never be too sure. Now, I am not a health care auditor or anything but, I am pretty sure that is not a great use of resources. So even though I am in the worst pain of my life I am still hesitant to make the call, but make it I do. The dispatcher answers...I tell him I need an ambulance. He asks for what and I say, "umm, to take me to the hospital?"..."yeah, I assumed that, but why?" Ooops. So I tell him my situation and he sends them right over. In the meantime my friend comes to pick the girls up for school...take that Sara!! The ambulance arrives and they have to figure out how to get me out of the house. The problem being we have a ton of steep stairs out our front door so a stretcher is a no go. They could put me in a chair and carry me out but they advise against that. They say it is very uncomfortable and patients tell them it is extremely painful. So that is out. They decide to take me out the back door. I can not move so they need to carry me. One paramedic under each arm and gingerly drag me out of the house. My toes are barely scraping the ground...imagine if you will one of those peaceful hippie protestors getting arrested. You know how the police pick them up under the arms and the protestor kind of floats just above the ground? Yeah, it was like that. I can just imagine what the neighbors are thinking because you know they are looking out their windows. Is she sick? Is she hurt? Is she protesting stores opening on Thanksgiving day? But I didn't care...I needed help and boy did they make me feel good before we even left the driveway! They got an IV in, meds running and my pain manageable. So we go back to the same ER as the day before and I have the same clothes on...it was too painful to change. I had on the same BRIGHT red shirt and of course it was the same nurse as the day before. So this time they add pain meds to the muscle relaxants. No pain now!! So poor Chuck has to leave work early yet again and come spend our anniversary in the hospital. This guy is a saint! So the next 2 days are a blur...in my medication induced stupor I promised Sara a kitten, a puppy and a pool for the backyard. I also had various phone conversations that I don't remember, so if I had a chat with you around the middle of November don't hold me to anything I may have said. Again, no worries, the baby was safely with my Mother in Law. After 2 days I stopped taking the muscle relaxant, I didn't like the way it made me feel at all. After another couple of days I would only take the pain med if I really, really needed it. It is a pretty addictive med and I kept thinking of all the stories that start with a back injury and end with an addict. But by Friday I needed to get out of the house and I really wanted to do something special with the kids. They have been getting the sh*t end of the stick lately. So we make plans to go to Bass Pro Shop to see Santa. I did need a little somethin', somethin' so I took some pain meds. As we were driving to see the Big Guy the girls were asking how he got there...we explained that the elves must have dropped him off and they are scouring the skies to try and find his sleigh. All of the sudden I scream out! AHHH! There they are! I was looking up too and just at that moment a flock of geese fly by. I swear on my children's lives when I say I was 100% certain that I had just seen Dasher and Dancer and the rest of the gang. Chuck bursts out laughing because he knows I wasn't reacting like that just for the sake of the kids...he knows I think I really saw them. He gives me a look as if to say, "you know they aren't real, right?"...between the over the top promises I have been making, the hallucinations and just not liking the way they make me feel I have decided to lay off the drugs all together. Though there was one time I was in agonizing pain, took a pill and felt like a million buck half an hour later and I told Chuck I was rethinking this whole drug addict thing and he told me he was OK with it...he really didn't want to be a single parent forever.
Another unpleasant side effect of this back injury is the inability to properly "cleanse myself" after using the bathroom. I have, as Chuck likes to call them T-Rex arms. He believes they are disproportionately shorter than the average persons. I am not saying I completely agree, but, if Cee Lo Greene and I were to go in for a hand shake we would both have to make sure to have a breath mint ahead of time. We would be getting kind of close. So there is no front to back or even back to front going on at this time. Now in a pinch all of us ladies have had to drip dry before and I decided albeit begrudgingly to go with that course of action...my thought process being; smelling like the Andrew Square T station after the St. Patty's Day Parade has got to be better than the putrid, festering stench coming from the hole in my belly, oh yeah, don't forget about that! I did however, have to make the conscience, and completely unwise decision to not take care of any "other" bathroom business for a while. A decision that would come back to bite me in the ass...later in the week I HAD to go, I couldn't wait any longer. It was just as miserable as I had expected. My back was still in a spasm and I was in unbelievalbe pain. Now I had to do this too? I was sure I was going to either blow out my back or ass. Neither option was good. I swear you could hear my scream clear across the country. Yeah, it was that bad.
It is now a few weeks since my back problem and I am starting to feel good again. I met with a plastic surgeon last week and finally got some good news. The hole in my stomach is pretty much all filled in. They burnt it again with the silver nitrate and Chuck gets to do that for me once a week. I am sure in some weird, twisted way he might get a little satisfaction from putting that acid stick on my belly after all I have put him through. I go back again next week and hopefully that will be it...no more hospital trips...A Christmas Miracle! I am banking on that because if not there really is nothing medical left for them to do. Chuck and I have been brainstorming though should we need a back up plan. The biggest problem is the skin apron covering the hole...it can't get air in there to heal. Chuck said we should install a chin up bar and get some of those boots so I could hang by my ankles..that would do the trick and is a lot less invasive than my idea of piercing my belly with one of those disc earrings with the large holes in them on either side of my belly button and then hoisting the skin apron up with some bungee cords attached to my shoulders...that would air it out real good.
On more than one occasion as I was sitting in my mesh undies (which Michelle Duggar may have 19 kids and counting, but she has nothing on me when it comes to the mesh undies...I still have about 2 years worth in my closet) I have said to Chuck if we send a picture to MTV of me in the undies with the wound vac and the breast pump hooked up there would no longer be a need for the show Teen Mom...they would wire their vaginas shut!! Teen pregnancy would be wiped out completely.
So as my visits to the hospital begin to wind down I am having to say goodbye to some great nurses I have met along the way. As one said goodbye she said she hopes that is it, that I don't have to come back. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks and I was filled with panic and said, "oh Kendra...I am sure I will see you back here next year when I have my next baby." She said, "what? I thought you said Emily was your last child"..."she is supposed to be" I said and then added, "but the ass clown that botched my c-section is the same person who tied my tubes..."