Doing Much Better

September 1, 2008 @ 3:51 pm | Filed under:

Thank you all so much for your comments and well-wishes. I am making a good recovery. The food poisoning or stomach bug or whatever it was has finally left me alone, and yesterday I was even allowed out of bed for a while by my very protective husband. ๐Ÿ™‚ Today I am feeling more like my old self, though I find I run out of steam very quickly. I guess we’ll be laying low here at Casa Bonny Glen for a while.

To address a few questions from the comments (and comments, by the way, are split between the Typepad and WordPress blogs because some readers still seem to be landing on the old site instead of the new one):

1) Yes, I am looking for a new doctor. Possibly a new hospital as well (though we like how close this one is to home, especially since I tend to have very fast labors). I’m sure I would fare better in the Labor & Delivery ward during a real delivery than I did under last week’s circumstances. The nurses there just weren’t geared to take care of sick people. (And as my night nurse said to me at discharge: “You were one sick lady!”)

I would probably have been better off in the ER for the hydration and potassium treatments, but they were just too scared to keep a woman who was having contractions.

2) No, I am not eating lots of bananas! I’m afraid bananas are the food I loathe above all others. Can’t abide even the merest hint of banana flavor in a smoothie or anything. But no fear. Knowing this, and having suffered from bad leg cramps during my very first pregnancyโ€”which all the books said meant my potassium was lowโ€”I have ever since made an effort to get LOTS of potassium from other sources. Peaches, melon, spinach, oranges, orange juice, and lima beans, to name a few. Dried apricots are especially high in potassium, but I’m thinking it’s best to go easy on the dried fruit for a bit longer.

Also, I’m taking pre-natal vitamins, of course. I don’t think I headed into this illness with low potassium; I think its sudden onset and severity just depleted my reserves. Of everything. I also think, now that it’s over and I’ve had time to do some reading, that I am fortunate the whole thing didn’t turn out much, much worse. ::::shudder::::

Back in her chemo days, Jane used to sometimes get high doses of potassium. This was always a serious business: she had to be hooked up to a heart monitor during the hours-long i/v drip, and a doctor was required to be present in the room the entire time, watching the monitor. That last part was actually a very good thing for us: usually it was one of the young interns assigned to babysit the monitor, a twenty-something first-year doctor fresh out of med school. Scott and I were twenty-somethings ourselves, so we generally hit it off with these docs and wound up making friends with many of the people caring for our little girl. This helped so much as the months of treatment wore on: when your doctors feel that kind of personal attachment to you and your child, they really listen to you. They respect your judgment. You get better medical care that way.

This OB barely knew meโ€”I had only had one appointment with him. My first choice of OB retired over the summer and sold his practice to this fellow.

Anyway, back to the heart monitor: I was a bit surprised nothing like that was mentioned during the four hours I was getting those potassium boluses. No one so much as brought a stethoscope into the room. They did use the Doppler thingie to listen to the baby’s heartbeat once or twice, but not during the potassium treatment. I can tell, now, how sick I was because I never asked about it. It is NOT like me to keep a question to myself. Looking back, I’m shocked at that part. But that’s the trouble with hospital stays, isn’t it? When you most need to advocate for yourself, you’re least likely to be able to do it.

At any rate, I’m glad it’s over. I’m glad we all had a four-day weekend to recuperate in.

A few sweet moments from that awful day:

On Thursday morning, while I was waiting for my OB to return my phone calls, Wonderboy climbed up next to me on the bed and said, “You sad, Mommy?” “Oh, no, sweetie,” I told him, “Mommy’s just sick. My tummy hurts.” He laid a gentle hand on my belly, his brow furrowed with concern.

“I go get you a band-aid?”

Melt, melt, melt.

Also, there is something indescribably sweet about using your husband’s cell phone to call home and seeing, when you dial the number, that the name that pops up onscreen is: Love.

Have I mentioned I’m glad to be home?

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22 Reponses | Comments Feed
  1. Steve the llamabutcher says:

    And there was much rejoicing!

  2. Gail says:

    I was hoping you were feeling up to a post telling us you’ve recovered. So glad you’re doing better. The cell phone story at the end made me well up. What a gift you two have in each other.

  3. GailV says:

    Whew, I just read the original post, and already get to read the ending. Truly an amazing story! I am so glad to read that it came out okay in the end, and I imagine some good will come from this.

  4. JoVE says:

    I’m so glad you are feeling better. And your little guy is so cute.

  5. patience says:

    I’m so very glad you are recovering. I’ve been holding on and waiting and hoping you continued getting better. You absolutely melted my heart at the end there – what an amazingly blessed woman you are!

  6. KC says:

    I’m so glad you’re feeling better. I was worried about you (and enraged at that OB).

  7. Beth says:

    Very, very glad to read this update. The cell phone … wow. You are blessed.

    Take care.

  8. Heather - Doodle Acres says:


  9. WendyinVA says:

    So glad you’re feeling better. I did wonder if you even liked bananas… LOL The cell phone bit made me cry — very sweet!

  10. Jennifer says:

    Potatoes are another good source of potassium, especially with the skins on. Glad you are feeling better.

  11. mamacrow says:

    very very glad you’re feeling better ๐Ÿ™‚
    sending prayers that you find an OB and general medical package that better suits your needs ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. Jennifer says:

    Rest up and take it easy!

  13. Rebecca says:

    I am so glad you are feeling better! ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Rebecca says:

    I am so glad you are feeling better! ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Erica says:

    Lest anyone think that above mentioned hospital and staff (which includes my very best and oldest friend) are totally incompetent, I’ve delivered all 7 of my babies there for about, let me do the math, 400 hours of excellent care (including one very scary ‘crash’ C-section). I guess I could be accused of being biased… ๐Ÿ™‚

    Just in case any locals were wondering (they were) or anyone moving to San Diego were trying to find a new hospital. ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

    So, so, so glad you’re home and feeling better, Lissa. Now how about that Shakespeare class today…..just kidding!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  16. Melissa Wiley says:

    Yup, I have heard excellent things about the hospital’s L&D ward. I just don’t think they were equipped to care for a *sick* person–and the ER was afraid to care for a sick *pregnant* person. I was neither fish nor fowl, and no one wanted me. ::sob:: ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Scott still wants me to deliver there because it is so close to home. Just not with that OB!

    But Erica, we’ve got to ask your nurse friend (whom I got to meet late in the day and she is sooo nice) what is the deal with the nurse who wouldn’t let me have a blanket!!

  17. mary says:

    I’m so glad you are doing better Lissa.
    We have been praying.
    You have such a special family with a special place in all our hearts.
    we’ll pray you through the rest of this pregnancy!
    love M~

  18. Alice C says:

    Yuck. I positively detest bananas, also. I am SO glad to hear you are on the mend!

  19. DnSmum says:

    A much yummier source of potassium (imho) is pistachios. There is as much potassium in 2 oz of pistachios as there is in 1 medium banana! (It is also 1 of only 2 nuts mentioned in the Bible!)

    Glad you’re feeling better!

  20. Melissa Wiley says:

    DnSmum: NOW you’re talking! I heart pistachios. In fact, all through this pregnancy I’ve kept a bowl on the counter to keep myself munching on protein throughout the day. Which, I’m thinking now, may have been a very good thingโ€”it may mean my potassium level *was* nice and healthy before the food poisoning monster attacked me.

  21. Kathy in Colorado says:

    Sending warm fuzzies across the miles.

  22. Kathy in Melbourne, Oz says:

    Hi Melissa, Very glad to hear you are on the mend. It’s so scary, isn’t it, when you’re focusing on the little life inside you and just worrying every minute that your body is going to let it down.

    I’ve just been through a not dissimilar thing here at 15.5 weeks pregnant with my third – in my case, an acute kidney infection was the culprit though. All is well now although I am so exhausted. Interesting to read what you wrote about the potassium drip, as that happened to me too. I got a bag of potassium (on a v slow drip, over 8 hrs) and other than very methodically checking the drip set-up (three people separately checking it) and taking my pulse / bp / heart before commencing, they then left me to it, barring the usual 4-hrly obs. I was a bit surprised too, and asked whether, in fact, potassium could cause heart problems in high doses. “Oh, sure,” responded the registrar cheerily, “it can give you a full-on heart attack and all!!” Noting my facial expression, he then hastily added, “But not in a young person with a healthy heart who’s getting it in such a slow controlled dose, really. Really.” Still, you can bet I did not doze or rest until the 8 hrs was finished and we were back on plain vanilla saline fluids!