Friday, February 14, 2020

Kidney Saga part 20

I never thought of a shower as something difficult. I mean, it's just getting clean, right? It's not a job. It's actually pleasant most of the time. Not when you are this sick. It is a major chore for someone who can barely stand for more than a few minutes. And trying to get my hair clean? Nightmare. I have very short hair, and it still was difficult. I wanted to shave my head after dealing with the shower, but sis-in-law (who is a nurse) recommended not making drastic hair decisions while on prednisone.

As February started, Inkwell began to express his sadness that I cannot play with him properly. He would sit outside the bedroom or computer room door and make sad noises and sing the songs of his people. He also spends a lot of time sitting on or next to me, trying to keep track of my movements.

On Monday, Feb 3rd, I had two appointments. The weekly blood draw and the cardiologist. The cardiologist took one quick look at the raging rash, which we were treating with an over-the-counter cream, and prescribed an ointment that is MUCH stronger. She agreed that it needs to be under control before I can advance. She was worried about my blood pressure readings, as they were high and the machine in her office confirmed the numbers on my home machine. So she upped a beta blocker, since it wouldn't affect the kidneys at all. It helped by the next day.

The swelling was awful, and she wanted to up one of my medications, but because of the danger to my kidneys she decided to let the kidney doctor make that call. The bloating is disturbing. I look like one of those ancient hearth goddess statues or an eldritch horror. If my stomach grows tentacles, I'm right out.

She also found a "book" of recipes that are kidney and heart friendly, with low sodium. I wanted to try them all immediately, but I am still too shaky to cook anything, so it'll have to wait. I was startled and supremely interested to see a recipe for biscuits and gravy in the book. It apparently needs certain special ingredients, but maybe we can order them through the local grocery or something if they don't have them.

Eric got a jury summons in the mail, which was just what we didn't need at this point, as he is the sole caregiver and provider of the family. I hope they accept his excuse outright and we don't have to figure out how to deal with the legal system. He attempted to get a doctor's note, but they only give you five days to respond, and does ANY doctor respond in five days if it's not a medical emergency?

The prednisone continued to give me memory dumps. On Monday they were mostly very old songs from my childhood. Some of them I couldn't believe existed until I Googled them.

The blood draw should have been uneventful. The blood itself was easy - a competent tech managed to pull enough from my veins on the first try, which is a new experience. The problem was the urine. I went dry as soon as I entered the hospital, which caused a mood swing and crying and embarrassment. The tech was very understanding and helpful, but it still felt somewhat traumatic.

On Tuesday, Feb 4th, we got a letter from our insurance informing us that the local hospital was no longer covered due to the bankruptcy and the closure of its Yakima campus. I once again rejoiced that I made the decision to go to Prosser Hospital instead of the local. It was a decision based in experience and reason, but it could have been so much worse for us.

Full Kidney Saga