I Found A Positive For Every Negative Thing During My Hospital Stay
I really truly want to write a positive upbeat journal entry since my last few have been very tough and raw. My only issue is I don't get too much work with; however, I am going to do my best to make this as upbeat as possible.
The past few weeks I have been feeling off physically. I kept thinking it was mental because of the emotional issues I have been dealing with since not having cancer, including survivor's guilt and losing two dear friends to cancer. So while I was vomiting, sleeping excessively and dealing with continuous pain, I just pushed it off. My partner Greg started noticing my right breast getting increasingly large and red. The doc agreed with him, gave me some antibiotics and told me to get to my surgeon if there was no improvement. We saw sure signs of improvement, so we thought all was good. Greg examined my breast again one morning (he has learned a lot from webMD). This time he was not so sure it was getting better. After I got out of the shower that morning, it was like someone turned a drain on my breast (lots of drainage - will spare the details). Four hours, several hospital gowns, towels, and burn wraps later they admitted me into the hospital.
I got an MRSA infection, otherwise known as a staph infection, in my right breast. I guess from all these hospital visits I tested positive for MRSA, which is no big deal unless you have a wound. The deal with this type of infection is that most types of antibiotics don't work, so you end up having to get an IV type antibiotic. This week I went in for emergency surgery to remove my tissue expander and the infection. The doctor put another tissue expander in, and since then I have continued antibiotics. So far so good.
Today I paged my nurse. She of course did not want to put on a gown or gloves to come in (I am highly contagious I guess) so she stood at the door. I asked her politely for a fork, and she asked why. I told her I wanted to eat the salad my husband brought me. She said they don't have those here. She then let me know she was going on lunch, and asked if I will I be fine until she comes back. I said yes and she shut my door.
At that very moment I could feel a rush of emotions through my body, my face flushed and tears started welling up in my eyes. Then I said out loud to myself "WAIT A F*CKING MINUTE BOBBIE. ARE YOU REALLY GOING TO CRY OVER A DAMN FORK?! NO!!" Then I started laughing out loud. (The photo for this blog is one I took of myself after I couldn't get my damn fork.)
I knew I was going to turn to my keyboard for some solitude. In order to get through the rest of my stay here in this lovely place, I want to be able to vent about the difficult things, but will follow up with a positive- This way I won't feel ungrateful.
- When we first got to the ER, they left me in the main triage waiting room with MRSA (which is contagious). The "ooze" had taken my towel and all my clothes I was wearing. They left me with two hospital gowns sitting in the entry of the ER with a bunch of sick people.
- I was much cooler during my hot flashes in the hospital gown!
- I had breakfast Tuesday morning. That was the last time I could eat or drink as my doc was hoping to get me in for surgery that evening. I got in for surgery the next morning and only had two hours of sleep.
- I got bumped for a lung transplant. How freaking amazing is that!!
- MRSA is contagious so I am quarantined and treated like a leper. Anyone that comes in my room must wear a gown and gloves. In the beginning the nurses would come in and introduce themselves, change the date on the board, and write their name down. Now they just open the door, yell in and leave. Sometimes they will underhand toss my pills to me. I cannot leave the room, this small little box. Do they know I have ADHD?! You cannot do this to someone with ADHD. My room has 66 tiles on the ceiling. I have watched the red second hand swing around my wall clock over and over.
- I get a single room. No roommate!! Anyone that has had an extended stay in the hospital understands how big this is! My own bathroom too! Not that I have been able to use it (but that's more than you need to know).
- The hardest one to deal with- My babes cannot be near me due to the MRSA. Totally sucks. Every morning Greg gets the kids ready and drops them off at daycare. Once he is done spending the day with me, he picks them up and takes my babes home. I cannot touch them, hug them or hold them tight to let them know mommy is going to be okay. Breaks my heart.
- The babes absolutely love the daycare. They take such good care of them there! I know this is hard for all of us, but I know there is an end. I also remind myself while I sit here alone counting tiles, that I have spent lots and lots of quality time with my angel while I have been sick. I am grateful for this time. Soon they will get to see their mommy healthy. I will no longer be cancer mommy or sick mommy.
Okay, okay, it's dinner time now. I need a damn fork! Time to open my door wide and get ready to pounce on the delivery person- Then I will be able to eat my delicious salad my hubby brought me, listen to some Lumineers, and count my blessings. I am so freaking fortunate. I am the luckiest girl in the world.
Are there any positives you found behind the negatives during your hospital stay? Share in the comments below or sign up here.
Photos courtesy of author.
Bobbie is a wife, mother of two amazing 6 year olds, and a breast cancer survivor. She is an insurance executive who moved from the US to Canada years ago with her company. In November of 2015 she went in for a routine physical and her mammogram found an abnormality. Bobbie was officially diagnosed with breast cancer in December of 2015. After chemo, five surgeries and a bilateral mastectomy, Bobbie is cancer free as of today, but continues to battle through the mental and physical side effects of cancer. Click here to visit her blog.