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Do-nothing vacation not so relaxing

October 03, 2008|By KIM MARTIN, Hagerstown

I have always been a person who likes to go on vacation. This year I decided to just stay home and enjoy my home that I pay for. I was going to stay up late, sleep in, and do absolutely nothing. I was really excited about my vacation (no stress). I was going to be off for two weeks with nothing to do but relax.

My vacation started July 3 when I got off work. I was heading home for movies, snacks and just hanging out with my husband, Michael, and my dog, Kane. I was just going to enjoy life at my own pace. Well, the evening of July 3 my husband and I were just relaxing on the deck, talking about what to do for July 4. Around 11 p.m., we decided to do nothing (Good idea, I thought). On July 3, we had gone to bed to watch TV and just relax. In a half hour or so, Michael, Kane and I were fast asleep.

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Around 1 a.m., I rolled over to get comfortable and got a pain in my left side. I thought I was just stiff (You know, the getting older stages). Well, the pain got worse. I woke Michael and told him I was in severe pain.

He says, "Honey, just go back to sleep. It's OK."

(Wrong!) This happened so fast, I got out of bed and told Michael to get up, that something was seriously wrong. I thought maybe I had a bladder infection as I felt pressure to urinate. I told Michael to take me to Sheetz to get some cranberry juice. By the time he got back to our car, I was out of it, bent over, screaming in agony. We went to the emergency room. I think I scared everyone on shift that night. I was bent over walking into the ER. A CAT scan was done, and the doctor on duty found out that I had kidney stones. He said one was passing, and that is where the severe pain was coming from, but I had three more that probably would not be any trouble as they were still in the kidney.

After a long night at the ER, lots of fluids, pain medication and tears, the stone finally passed to the bladder. I thought I had died and gone to heaven. I went home and got much-needed sleep. Forty-eight hours passed and I felt great. I watched talk shows, had snacks, and started to enjoy my vacation once again. My husband came home and we ate dinner, watched a movie, and talked about fishing the next day. I was ready for some fun.

Around 9:30 p.m., I began to feel pain again. I took some pain meds and thought everything would be OK (Wrong again!). Once again I was on my way back to the ER. One of the three stones decided to move. Yes, it is true, this is more painful than giving birth. More fluids and meds, and another CAT scan. This time I was going to have surgery. The doctor was going to put a stent in, to hopefully remove the stone. He found nothing. He assumed he crushed the second stone while placing the stent.

About five hours after being home, pain started again. This time nothing was helping me. I walked - honestly - all night long trying not to wake my husband, and hoping to relieve this pain. I was in the backyard walking and crying (no joke) when the alarm went off for Michael to go to work. I told him something was wrong. He said "You're just uncomfortable due to the surgery."

I thought he was right, but three hours after Michael left for work, I called my brother, Pat, to come get me and take me back to the ER. I get there and had another CAT scan (Thank God for health insurance.). The third stone had decided to move. Once again I am prepped for surgery. I passed stone number three.

I go home and try to enjoy the last days of my vacation. I am so tired I just sleep. When I woke up I did not feel well. I truly thought I was just worn out. Well, two days passed and I was doing nothing but sleeping. I could not get up. I was not hungry. I did not even have the urge to use the bathroom. I noticed several days later that my stomach looked bloated, and I just had no appetite. Well, that evening I was in pain again. I was back at the ER. The fourth stone had decided to move and got lodged in a duct. This was shutting my system down. I had lost 7 pounds in four days. I was admitted once again. My daughter, Crystal, and my sister, Julie, came to visit with me. I was not very much company to them, but they sure were coaching me through the pain.

My surgery was scheduled for the following morning. I was pumped with fluids all day and night. I could not sleep once my family left me there. About 3:30 a.m., I felt like I was hungry, but my food and drink was taken from me at midnight. By 5:30 a.m., I was starving. I got myself up and went to the restroom. What do you know? A perfect flow of urine, the fourth stone had passed. (Thank God!)

I had to wait all day for the doctor to finish his other surgeries, to release me.

I got home that evening around 5 p.m., had some dinner and a full night of sleep.

So much for doing nothing on vacation. I was due back to work Monday morning. Maybe next year I will plan to go somewhere just to relax and do nothing.

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