(Gang this post covers some pretty serious ground – just a warning)
Early hours Tuesday – I couldn’t understand why the nice man in A&E was asking the question. Did I want to be resuscitated “if it should come to it”? All that fuss for a few mouth ulcers. What did they want from me? The early hours ambulance ride was fuss enough – it could have waited until the morning surely? I just felt tired – really tired and fed up that I couldn’t swallow a thing and I kept being sick. If everybody just left me be and I sat very very still it would pass.
Wednesday – I couldn’t understand why my visitors at hospital were red eyed and in between making me howl with laughter kept exchanging nervous glances especially when the nurse did my blood pressure/pulse/oxygen levels. My mouth and throat were still full of blisters but I was on a saline drip now. I was settling into the hospital routine, and taking loads of meds including loads of some pretty hardcore antibiotics that were a pain because they had to be given in a drip or I just threw them up. I was feeling a bit better – couldn’t I stop those at least?
Saturday – I laughed out loud – this was just silly. I’d got out of bed to plug in my computer on the little side table in my room. I’d plonked myself down on a visitor’s chair to do so and now I couldn’t get myself up. I’ve had lots of experience standing up from a sitting position and yet I couldn’t do it. I told myself not to be so silly, braced myself and went back to bed feeling puzzled.
So – sepsis. Such a little word. It nearly killed me. (I still shake my head as I type that). My body had very nearly had enough. When I was admitted my heart rate was through the roof – I had no idea. For days apparently it was touch and go that I’d had medical intervention in time. (I promised I wouldn’t embarrass anyone so I’ll just say yes I did down to one person, she know who she is). Now that I’m home and thinking more clearly than I have in months I can see my situation for what it is. If I was an IPhone (other smart phones are available) I was and had been on the thin sliver of red battery wise for weeks. The clues were there. Dramatic weight loss – a size 6 hangs off me. The fact that something as simple as climbing stairs was startlingly hard. I always thought skin and bone was an expression but I was/am. It’s tough on my organs and they nearly quit on me and that is terrifying because I’m not ready to go yet. Yes, I know I don’t have a choice and there’s a whole other discussion for another time but given the choice I don’t think you’d find me in a Swiss clinic knocking back the poison.
Not being ready to go means a whole new perspective. I’m finally able to eat and oh boy am I enjoying it. I celebrate little triumphs like climbing the stairs unaided. I’m not turning my nose up at any help the District Nurse or Palliative Care Nurse suggests. (I have access to bloody cushions from a well known retail store thank you but if they think I currently need an NHS one because I’m so thin I could get pressure sores really easily then sign me up I suppose). I’ve had a busy week of family and friends coming over and I sit there grinning thinking “I could have missed this”. The best visitors get the balance right. It must be so tempting to think that I’m out of hospital so I’m “healed”. I’m not. I won’t ever be. But you’ll find me up and showered and happy to be alive in the true sense of the word – and that does me just fine.
Thanks for being there Team Dolly. xx