When Gallbladders Attack

Two weeks ago Saturday evening I got an attack of acid reflux. A thing that happens periodically to me. It’s painful and awful but not particularly frightening. After taking the acid reducers and tums and walking the floor, I started to dry heave. Not a pleasant thing, but it did shift my gastro distress away from the painful acid reflux and I fell asleep. I woke up with pain and bloating in my upper abdomen radiating down the right slide to where my appendix presumably is.. I just tolerated my way through it all day but as these things do, it got worse at night and I began to consider the possibility that it was appendix.

In the morning it continued and I was going to call off work, but another co-workers son was in the ER and so she was off, so I dragged myself in. I lasted 3 hours, made a complete hash of an invoice and left. I contacted the doctor and got a tele-appointment for the following day and that netted an X Ray order. X-ray came back as possible kink in my intestine? Need CT. Go to the ER. By this time it was Friday afternoon. I fully expected the CT would show them something like a broken rib, but nope.

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Inflamed Gallbladder – Cholecystitis¬†for those who like the technical jargon. It sucks. They admitted me. I assumed to yank that damn organ. But apparently it’s not that simple when the gallbladder is so inflamed and the patient has been sick for a week and is therefore severely dehydrated. They put me in ICU, put a drain in the gallbladder and liver and then waited for the infection to get back into a zone that normal people live in. 8 days in the hospital. It’s painful. Its exhausting and most of all it’s inconvenient. The drain will remain for about 8 weeks and then they will pull the drain and the gallbladder out.

Things to know about this – the bile from your gallbladder is DISGUSTING. Utterly disgusting. I know because I have a bag of it hanging off my belly. It has to be drained and measured on the regular, which is doable. I’m considering starting a side hustle where I charge people to watch me empty the disgusting bile. I honestly bet there is money in it. Probably I could be Tik Tok famous in seconds for it.

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While I was in the hospital my sisters cleaned my apartment from floor to ceiling. Which was a gift beyond measure. I am not ever going to get a good housekeeping award, but I generally keep the chaos at bay, if not the dust. But since the pandemic my apartment has slowly devolved into a small cesspool. When I got sick, it turned into an island in the sewage treatment plant. It was awful. And they braved it and fixed it. They’ve been clucking around like mother hens since I got sick and now that I am home they are, if anything more worried. But I’m fine. It’s a small space and I’m pretty secure on my feet.

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I’m thinking I might be able to work from home the first half of the week and shift to the job mid week? I might be being optimistic. I just want my life to go back to normal. How to deal with the drains in the real world is a question. They are much bigger than the surgical drains I’ve had in the past. My sister is making me a pocket on belt that I hope will answer. Picture a mini apron where the apron is just a pocket for the drains. All my tops are tunics, so I think after that it will be OK? We’ll see. I’m pretty sure they will send me home if anyone catches a glimpse of the bags. It might create an uncomfortable environment for my co-workers wondering if the bile bag explodes does that create a bio-hazard?

The cats, at least, are happy I am home. It was nice to have all of them on the bed with me last night. Although, it is not perhaps very clear that they care in the least that I am also in the bed in this pic, since EVERYONE is studiously ignoring Mom acting stupid with her phone again.

New to Me Laptop is finally here

My cats, lovely beasts generally, killed my previous laptop. It was a long and torturous death made by cracking the hinges by sitting on the closed laptop. Then the case began to split at the seams. And then it began to act a bit…wonky. Eventually it fled to the ether, leaving an unresponsive black screen. They have killed 5 laptops in the last 20 odd years. I am finally fed up. I have purchased a Panasonic ToughBook. They run a bit pricey for my blood, so I got a refurbished one. The government having kindly given me some extra spendable.

It took it’s sweet time arriving and then didn’t work. But the company was very friendly and immediately offered to replace it. So I sent it back and waited another 10 days and it finally arrived on Thursday. I waited out it’s quarantine period and finally opened it today. It’s quite nice. Keyboard is quite a bit smaller than my last one and so it’s taking some getting used to. Still, it feels good to have the thing. And I don’t think the beasts will be able to crack it.

I cannot type on glass. So anything more than 20 words was not offered to anyone in the last month or more. And all of those were painfully wrought. I like keyboards. Indeed I like mechanical keyboards the best. But that’s because I’m old.

I’ve had that diagnosis confirmed by a teenager in the grocery last week. His sister was pushing the cart while swiping the phone and nearly collided with me. He chastised her for running into the old lady. He was then covered in embarrassment as he remembered that calling a woman old in her hearing is not good manners. I was not offended, having already diagnosed myself with the malady and was more amused by his embarrassment than anything.

I am currently suffering of stomach. Yesterday it was acutely painful acid reflux. This morning it feels like I have a great big pointy lump in my belly. Also just ache. I find I’m more frightened of these kinds of things than I was in my youth. When I was young, I knew that the suffering was temporary and not a reason to even call a doctor. Last night I was convinced I had stomach cancer, hiatal hernia, bleeding ulcers, and that I should consider a trip to the ER. Just as in my youth, the stomach pain has subsided and is merely a whisper of last night. But by god I was frightened by it. Perhaps more so because I’m alone. Suffering alone is more frightening I think.

Anyway, anxiety aside, I’m recovering and will hopefully continue in that vein.