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Friday, March 18, 2011

Haunting Memories...

As I am trying to sleep I am plagued with memories of the month I was in the hospital after I gave birth to Izak. It is so ironic that the fears that have held me in limbo for many years were in fact made very real especially during the first 2 weeks in ICU. The feeling of suffocating was ever present, with the breathing tube u have this tube shoved down ur throat & u have this feeling that u want to swallow and u cant this tube thing is in ur way, u want to drink and r so thirsty but u can't. All I was allowed was to suck on this disgusting bitter tasting sponge textured stick. That made me think of sponges sitting out on a counter top that had just scrubbed dirty chicken juices off.

U can't speak & u have this feeling u can't get enough air into ur lungs b/c this tube is doing it for u-but u still want the action of breathing on ur own and it is not the same like when u r snorkeling and forget to breath out of the tube instead of ur nose. At least that was my impression of it, the left side of my lung had collapsed so I am not sure if that was the suffocating feeling but it was so awful when they would feed me, I would feel as though some one was holding a pillow over my face and the panic would set in and I would want to claw and scratch my way out of there. At one point they were weaning my off of the tube and those times were excruciating and caused me to want to pass out from the fear of being smothered.

This one night I was scheduled to have a MRI of my lungs and for whatever reason the order slipped by the nurse on my rotation. It was nearly midnight and one female nurse who I really liked and one male nurse Michael who I loved, made a mad dash to get me to the MRI test on time. My bed crashed  into every wall and they shoved my humongous bed threw the elevator barely fitting in an attempt to get me there on time, all finesse was out the window. Apparently my bed was very hard to maneuver and b/c of the late hour transportation was not called and these nurses were not used to moving the bed. Each jar and bump was so painful as my abdominal wound was still gaping open feeling like my intestines could spill out at any moment.

It was a wild ride and the whole time my bed which had special air movement to it to prevent bed sores and some other things I guess I needed was deflating and scaring the hell out of me as I pulled every muscle trying to stay upright. When unplugged it went flat as a board, I couldn't get air to my lungs and the feeling of a gorilla sitting on my chest was so terrifying as I couldn't sit up due to the football size gaping wound in my abdomen caused by the debrasion the surgeon had to do b/c of the septic poisoning of my skin (peritonitis) . It was a hellish ordeal, I couldn't  breath deep full refreshing breaths- I imagine this is what an asthma attack feels like. My lungs were on fire and hurt like I had swallowed ice, each breath was not refreshing and caused me to take another breath that brought on more fire and ice.

The fear of being suffocated was so real and there was no where I could go to get away from the feeling, not even sleep allowed me peace. The hallucinations were so real and so vile they very rarely offered me any reprieve from the torture the waking hours held for me. My only solace was when I opened my eyes and saw family members there. Their caring facings talking soothingly to me, singing to me, offering me words of comfort and ice cold hands on my feverish brow were moments I lived for. Hearing their voices and being able to communicate the songs I wanted to hear were treasured by me. I will never forget the loving patience they showed me and the strength I rec'd from their reassuring words.

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