Five Minute Friday: broken

I wouldn’t say that my kidneys are broken. I mean—they work. They are doing everything they are supposed to do. They just do a little more. They like to make lovely not-so-tiny kidney stones. Then those stones like to move around and block things. In both kidneys. At the same time. Both ways. Uphill. In the snow.

So my broken-ish kidneys and I have been in on-and-off pain since March 19th when I had to have emergency stents surgically placed. I thought that when I had surgery in March 29th to remove the stones in both kidneys, that would be the end of it. I was wrong.

It turns out I had formed a large blood clot in the left kidney. My left was broken-ish. The clot was so large that the urologist was unable to remove the 12mm stone and all its buddies hanging out in there. And because it took so much time to work on that left kidney, the doctor didn’t even attempt the right kidney. I was to be scheduled for another surgery to remove the stones after the swelling in my left kidney had gone down and the clot had dissolved.

My spirit was completely broken

But I was just dying for a couple of good spa weekends at Good Sam hospital. So I was in the ER just 5 days after my 2nd surgery. I spent 2 nights coming home on Easter. It was an infection. SURELY The IV antibiotics pumped into my 24 hours a day while I was there would fix what was broken.

I was wrong.

I was checked back into the hospital through the ER with many, many tears and a couple barf bags less than a week later. It was yet another infection. I was on IV antibiotics again and was sent home with a prescription for more.

And another surgery date. Again—I felt even more broken. Surely enough was enough. Right?

So yesterday. April 22, over a month since I first discovered I had enormous kidney stones in both kidneys, I was wheeled in for a final surgery. I was terrified that the doctor would be unable to get all the stones. I was worried that my left kidney would be too broken to move to the right. I told the doctor that if that was the case, I didn’t even want to know about it. I told him to tell my husband and he could tell me in my own home where I could have a meltdown in private.

After surgery, he came in to tell me he got every single stone. Or so it appears. I’ll have an x-ray to verify before my stent removal appointment on 5/5. But it seems like both kidneys are 100% clear of the rogue stones which checked me into the hospital 3 times in a month and made me feel like I was losing my mind.

I am so thankful to the family and friends who have been so kind with texts and phone calls and messages. Flowers and meals and coffee deliveries. A meal train set up by neighbors which is keeping my family fed this week and next so I don’t need to even think about it. Heating pads and pain medications which keep me comfortable. A crazy understanding couple of bosses who have been unbelievably supportive through all of this. Kids who fill my water cup, snuggle up to my pain, and rub my head. And a husband who has kept everything running while taking care of me and ushering me to the ER so many times without complaint. I am truly humbled by the kindnesses shown to me over the last month.

And although I may have broken down more than once since March 19, I am starting to heal. I am pieced back together—only a few kidney stones lighter. No longer broken.

I am participating in FIVE MINUTE FRIDAY. Today’s word is broken. The rules are simple. Write for five minutes flare. There is not extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, punctuation. It is unscripted. Unedited. Real.

Eight Years Gone: tragedy into joy

Eight years ago, we woke up to the sound of laundry detergent bottles floating into walls in the basement. We called in sick to work and waited for direction from emergency personnel that would come too many hours too late.

River and rain water just inches below the windows that are 4+ feet off the ground and 2feet above the floor. That’s an entire 8 foot basement plus 2+ feet of water in our home. you can see the front porch floating away from the house. You cannot see my car in the carport or even the garage door behind which is Aaron’s car. All of it gone in the blink of an eye.
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SOL21 Days 20 and 21: catch up

I was wiped out yesterday. Hence the double slice today with not a single slice yesterday. It turned out that my kidney stone situation was a bit more complicated that we originally thought. I had to have a semi-emergency surgery Friday night to preserve my kidney functioning. Although they were both functioning at the time, they were fearful by the size and location of the kidney stones as well as the inflammation and elevated white blood cell count, things could go from stable to dire in the blink of an eye.

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SOL21 Day 13: the day the world stopped

We had started to hear early rumblings about the Corona virus in early March. Around the 5th or so, my director asked me what did she think we should do from a technology standpoint if we needed to very quickly move students to remote. I had never even considered this. We started brainstorming some ideas. On March 7th, I saw a bunch of my girlfriends for dinner. We didn’t even mentions Covid. On March 12th, I saw several of them again when I attended a pretty large in person conference at a convention center. 😳 The thought of that now is terrifying. My boss asked me if I could come back to the office early. We were making the announcement that we needed to move to remote. It was all hands on deck.

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