Saturday, March 15, 2008

Terrifying Memories of High School

If you knew me in high school, and there are a few of you lovely readers out there that did, you'll remember my terrible, life interrupting, worry causing, doctor baffling migraines. When I left for University my neurologist said that he hoped for my sake that hormone changes in my early 20s would help me to grow out of them. I had a couple of doozies in my first year here in Hamilton, and then went on "the pill" and things evened out. I have still got some pretty terrible headaches, but nothing like the days of old. Until this week...

Oh holy shit. Yeah, I'm gonna leave the word shit up here, that's how bad it was. (Potential ministry employers beware, sometimes I say the word shit - I like to shift the blame for that to the Dutch)

I haven't been on the pill since September due to financial constraints. This past Monday I was at the ophthalmologist. She put some crazy drops in my eyes that made my pupils go crazy for a long time. This was happening while I had a crazy day filled meetings, a lot of painting and work for the mainstage set, not enough eating, not enough drinking (of water, Dad), not enough sleeping and general stress of mainstage crunch time and a CITB week.

By Monday night I had a pretty decent headache going, nothing that wasn't explainable or handleable. Tuesday morning I woke up and my neck and shoulders were just killing me. I figured I'd slept pretty tensely and that I would get over the neck stuff as the day went on. But instead it got to the previous day's headache and made things worse. By mid-afternoon I was starting to get a bit of a hurt on. I was relaxing with my friend Jacki who gave me a bit of a neck massage and I had hoped that would help things out. We went to choir and maybe singing, or maybe having sopranos singing in the row behind, made things worse. The pain escalated, and I ended up having to excuse myself part way through the rehearsal to go hurl. I went straight home after rehearsal to bust out the codeine and rest before Church in the Box rehearsal (and yearbook picture night!). The pain continued to get worse and I knew that I couldn't lead my rehearsal. Jacki's calm voice prevailed in also convincing me that it wasn't a good idea for me to drive either. I arranged for my lovely assistant leader Rachel to run our rehearsal and Jacki brought me in for the picture, took me back home and made sure that my ice pack and I were snuggly tucked into bed. I hoped for a full night's sleep, no more puking (pipe dream) and the ability to bounce back for Wednesday.

I spent the entirety of Wednesday in bed, getting up only to go to the bathroom or quickly get food.

By the end of Wednesday I thought I was feeling a bit better, had a much nicer over night and woke up on Thursday feeling considerably more human. Chelsea came over for a little visit. We talked for a while, and then I needed to rest and she needed to research. My head was beginning to hurt more and more and I hoped the rest would take care of that. That maybe I had just had my eyes open for too long and was excited at seeing another human who cared for me. I didn't fall asleep, but did rest, but at the end of the rest I did not feel better, I tried for more rest. Still no good. I cancelled my voice lesson.

Chelsea and I had a chiropractic appointment that she drove us to. Tony got some fantastic movement on my upper cervical spine (i think that's what he said, i was a little out of it) that was pretty locked up. He was concerned as he hadn't really seen me so much not like myself (Gayle and Mira, you should give him some lessons). Chels started to drive me home and I knew I wouldn't be able to do choir.

If you know me know, you know that I am not feeling any kind of good if I miss a CITB rehearsal the week of a service and a choir rehearsal when I know that there are already 3 altos missing from that rehearsal.

I get back to my apartment, get back into my bed, and get back to the codeine. I try to sleep with no luck. The pain is continuing to get worse. Later in the evening I alert Chelsea to my possible need to go the ER for help and ask her to be ready. She and Tashley make provisions for that. I try for more sleep, still nothing. The pain is getting crazy. Normally I listen to The Simpsons or well known movies on my laptop to help pass the hours. I didn't want to hear anything, the lappy was closed. My eye cover was on, while I was laying in a dark room already - the cracks of light coming in from the streets were even bothering me. And then I really began to notice that I was itchy. The Tylenol 3s had made me tingly and itchy, head to toe. I mentioned this to Jacki (who had called to check in) and she was concerned about an allergic reaction. Maybe so was I, but their pain killing abilities were the only thing holding me together.

Jacki and I tried to call Telehealth (yes Dad) to ask them about this itch thing and maybe this pain thing. It wasn't going to work and Jacki pleaded with me to just go to the hospital (when recounting this to my Mom, she wondered why I was so stubborn and just didn't go earlier - the triage nurse in the ER wondered why I didn't come in on Tuesday). So I called Chelsea and withing 15 minutes she, Tashley and I were on our way to Mac.

We had a relatively short wait of 3ish hours in the waiting room at the ER. Most of that was agony due to so much bright lights, so many uncomfortable chairs and so many loud, sick children (but loud, sick children need the most attention). Oh yeah, and there were some vocal parents wondering (very loudly to anyone who could hear - which was everyone) why their children were not already seeing a doctor and there was some very cracked out children's television programming (which I wasn't watching, but could hear the giggles of Chels and Tashley as they watched).

Around 5:30am I got into the ER and fairly quickly got to see a doctor. They had put me in a room by myself, which was nice as the lights could be turned off. The doctor gave me a through looking over, determined that I was not an addict and that I didn't have any obvious underlying neurological problems (neurological is different than mental, people!) and prescribed me a shot of Toradol. Not too long after that, one of Becca Scholtens' sisters in law came and gave me said shot. I had to wait a bit to make sure that I didn't have any reaction to the shot and then I was allowed to go. By 7:30am I was back in my apartment again.

Sleep felt like a victory as I had not seen it for 24hrs. I slept for almost 5 hours. When I woke up I felt like a new woman for about 2 hours and then needed to rest again. Of course yesterday night was the Redeemer Spring Banquet, and my friends had convinced me to go. I had made arrangements to have friends help me with hair and make-up and everything. Sigh. I decided while I was still feeling invincible that I should go for just the dinner. Jacki convinced me that driving may not be the best idea. So I arranged for Amy and Jon to pick me up and Jacki said she would bring me back.

I went back to sleep, and then got up and got ready. The getting ready part should have been my first clue to the fact that it may not have been the wisest idea to go. As it pooped me out to the point where I had to lay down for half an hour before my ride came. When we got there I felt pretty light headed and spacey, and Amy and Jon said they actually waited for me to finish a conversation with someone because there were afraid I wouldn't be able to get to our table by myself. It sucked to be at a banquet and feeling the way I was. Where I would ordinarily be flitting around talking to everyone, my instincts were to stay sitting (actually, I wanted to be laying back down). Garner was playing nice dinner music (which was the first music I had heard in days), but it seemed so loud, and there were so many people and so much light.

The pain was getting worse as the evening went on. My stomach started to churn as I put food in it. I finally finished eating, Jacki finished eating and she brought me back here. I went straight to bed.

I woke up in pain again this morning. And have had to write this post in shifts. My eyes can't handle the reading, and I'm still really exhausted and hurty. Mom said it will take me another 3 or 4 days to get over this. Especially with CITB tomorrow.

I just thought I'd update you, in true, too many details Laura style.

(this got written in shifts - sorry for lack of editing or continuity)

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