Friday, November 14, 2014

Waiting for the miracle

Last year after my fall I had quite a few tests in the ER.  In addition to finding out that my head was ok and my neck was ok and my back was ok and my rib was broken, the tests found a nodule on my kidney and a cyst on my uterus and I was told that I’d need to follow up on these to make sure they weren’t dangerous.

At some point as I was going to appointments to sort these things out I started having the feeling that seriously important information was going to come to light as a result of my fall.  So when I went for the ultrasound I thought “now they are going to find something important about my uterus.”  (Nope.  After the world’s longest ultrasound they gave my uterus a clean bill of health.)  And as I lay in the MRI machine (such strange noises!) I thought “there must be something going on with my kidney.”  (Nope.  Lots of people have benign fatty nodules on their kidneys; I am one of them.) 

At some point realizing that out of pocket max was met I decided to have some blood work done that we normally wouldn’t have been able to afford.  I was sure that this blood work would turn up a significant piece of information, some kind of important deficit that I would then be able to remedy that would make a difference in my life.  I did find out that I was low in several nutrients, but still nothing like I expected.

But as I was talking to the physician’s assistant that I saw that day (she went to Duke!  yay!) and giving her a list of the medications and supplements I was taking, I mentioned the ongoing and sometimes intense sacroiliac pain that I was frequently experiencing.  When she said that I should have an xray of my SI joint, I agreed (remember the out of pocket max?) even though I was sure that it wouldn’t show anything.

Except that I was wrong.  It did show something.  It showed that I have arthritis in my SI joint.

More interesting than that information was what happened because of that information.  Suddenly the head doctor of the clinic who was no longer taking patients was interested in seeing me.  Apparently arthritis in the SI joint was one of the things she dealt with.  Between her lack of bedside manner and my confusion about what she wanted me to do,  it was quite possibly one of the most awkward doctor’s appointments I’ve ever had.  She ended up prescribing a medication that she said would help me sleep—by preventing the nerves from expressing pain.  I was very excited about this, since night time was when my SI pain was the worst and I’d slept very badly for several months before that.

I got the prescription filled right away and took the medication for the first time that night.  I climbed into bed and lay there, waiting for the pain to start.

But I didn’t.

Instead I slept, and slept, and slept.  And didn’t wake up till many hours had passed and my bladder was just about bursting.  After months of nighttime pain and waking up every hour, It was amazing.

Over the next few days, I had a dawning awareness.  This was the miracle I’d been waiting for.  And if I had to go through all of that (fall/concussion/broken rib/ultrasound/mri) to get to this, it was worth it.

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