Well, looks like you guys are stuck with me for awhile yet. Suddenly and unexpectedly on Monday morning, I went into septic shock shortly after entering the ER for simply feeling “off.” I know my body. I know when something is or will be wrong. And sure as rain, it happened. I ended up with an admit to the ER with a temp of 101.8. No idea I had a temp. But from there it went from 0 to 100 in a matter of minutes. My BP tanked to 70/30, my temp skyrocketed to 104.8 with a heart rate of 170. My heart was beating so fast to keep up my failing blood pressure without the circulating blood required. I was shaking out of control, so much it hurt every part of my body. The ER worked ALL day, literally, all day, to get me stable enough to get me up to my room in the ICU. They even moved my ER room to one right next to the nurses’s station because my condition was so unstable and unknown.

No one thought I was going to be leaving the ER that day. Family was being called, special doctors were talking to me about life support and other life saving measures. I found out that none of my veins are usable anymore and for the first time, requiring ultrasound to find a vein usable as a PIV (at the time they didn’t know if my port was the culprit). It was the first time I also required a blood transfusion. That all coupled with massive amounts of fluid (They weighed me and I gained 15 pounds…I don’t eat…of just fluid), I was able to slowly over about 36 hours, get my blood pressure above 90. Only then would they allow pain medication. I was not happy with either of those things. So for the first few days in ICU, I was not pain-free.

For the first time, out of all close calls, I was scared. I wasn’t prepared (no one is but there are things you can do), I was alone and I didn’t know what was happening or how it even got to that point. I was just released not a few weeks ago from surgery in-patient for 7 days. But the ER team kept me focused even when I totally freaked out on them. I couldn’t be more grateful to the ER nurse assigned to my room for sticking with me and getting me through the roughest part of the whole “experience.” She knows who she is – seriously, thank you. Anyway, I was burning up so bad that the leads monitoring my heart, oxygen levels and blood pressure, didn’t stick. They had to re-enforce them with tape, tape and more tape. They kept me comfortable, listened and explained everything. They did all the testing necessary and after the results from the CT scans of basically my whole body, came in – I was moved up to ICU.

I stayed in ICU for only a few days. I had some wonderful and helpful visitors from my church. The turn around I made amazed even the physicians and staff who were working with me. I want to attribute that to faith. Faith I had in my doctors, staff, friends, church members and anyone else who kept me in their thoughts under whatever practice they use. I shouldn’t have made it, and it shouldn’t have gone from near death to walking around within days and a discharge in 4. It was the worst I’ve been but the fastest I’ve gotten through it.

For those wondering: it turned out to be intestinal bacteria (normally found there, good bacteria) that somehow hitched a ride out of my intestine and into my blood. It happened the same way last time so now I know, no matter what I do to keep things sterile, clean and safe, I can’t prevent these random attacks. Coming to terms with that has helped me relax a bit and accept it. Some things happen, and sometimes, there isn’t anything you could have done to prevent it.

If you knew this was happening via my personal page and sent messages of hope and healing, I thank you. I read them all but at the time was too sick to respond. This won’t be my first close call or my last, but for now – I’m feeling much better. Hope everything is going well for you all, and that you are having happier tummy days.

Finally out of the ER and up in ICU - my usual room, as you can see. For those wondering, the little monitor to the left of the TV is for continual monitoring throughout all Swedish systems and also used for conferences.

Finally out of the ER and up in ICU – my usual room, as you can see. For those wondering, the little monitor to the left of the TV is for continual monitoring throughout all Swedish systems and also used for conferences.

Obligatory balloons from my husband <3 Lots of butterflies this time; my favorite!

Obligatory balloons from my husband

Back on the floor, out of ICU!

Back on the floor, out of ICU!



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