We are spending a lot more time on social media these days, or at least I am. I see more posts saying, show me your 10th picture in your camera roll for a laugh, or answer these questions using words that begin with the first letter of your last name, or let's get to know each other better by answering these random questions. One of those questions I saw recently was- what is the most painfully thing you've experienced? Some people say childbirth, dental work, even a loss of a loved one. I now know my answer.
Passing a kidney stone.
This is my story of just that, having and passing a kidney stone- all during a pandemic. Yep.
Look, I've never given birth so I won't pretend like I know what that is like, but I would not wish this on anyone. It all started on March 2nd. I worked out, had a great day and came home. I had to go to the bathroom, normal I thought. Nope. What I thought was a normal trip to pee turned into what I can only describe as someone stabbing me in my left side. Over and over. Long story short, I had not idea what was happening to me. The Warren took me Summa's 24 Emergency in Green. Dr. Justin, Dusty and Brittany and the staff there took incredible care of me. I was a hot mess.. I was nauseous, squirming, grumpy and uncomfortable. They got me diagnosed and treated as soon as possible- which included drugged up. Mind you this was all at the being of the coronavirus scare. I kept thinking, do I really need to be here? Should I have just waited it out? Then that little stone would stabbed me and I realized I was in the right place. When we left the ER that night the stone was 4mm in size and 85% passed. I thought- perfect! I got this!
Wrong. Let me tell you something about myself. I don't like missing work. I rarely missed school growing up. Since working at WQMX, I have called off once. I remember the day- July 29, 2011. I was realllllyyyy sick. I called off on Tuesday, March 3rd. I woke up every 30 minutes during that night in pain. This stone was on the move and I felt it. The next day I started to fell better and decided to go to work on Wednesday.
Somehow I managed to get through that morning's show with no pain. A catch 22 because pain means it is moving. When I got home that day, I experienced a pain that now I will only describe as this little stone was trying to perform an exorcism to get out of my body. It was the worst pain, for me, EVER. That went on for about an hour. After that episode, the pain was apparent but tolerable.
Next came an appointment at Summa Urology to see where this little stone was at on it's way to my bladder. At this point in the coronavirus situation, it had been deemed a pandemic and we were told to only go to necessary doctor's appointments. I was convinced I could live with this stone in my body forever. I was in minimal pain- like a sore muscle, I was drinking a TON OF WATER to get this thing out of me. I knew I could do this on my own. I met with Dr. Moss. She is lovely. She gave me a week, a week to pass it on my own. Next would be an ultrasound to see it's status and then we would talk surgery.
Surgery?! As in surgery up my bladder where they sometimes have to put in a stint to help kidney flow and all of this would be happening during a pandemic. Again, I thought- this is fine. I can live with this little stone in me. Enter sweet Dionna and Martha at Summa Urology. They are listeners and fans of WQMX and they gave me all the helpful hints to evict this stone! I had a week.
I drank all the water, which is probably why I got the stone in the first place. I do not drink enough water. I bought a huge Yeti and would fill it up what felt like 10 times a day! Anyway- I drank all the water, added lemon because the citrus helps, I drank beer because beer makes you pee, I would talk to my stone. Hey there- come on out! Nothing worked! The pain was still there, minimal, but still there.
Finally, the ultrasound date arrived- this past Friday the 20th. Almost 3 weeks since this all started. I am thinking, do I need to go this medical center to get this done? Am I putting people in danger by doing this? I am not in a lot of pain, so maybe this can wait until after the pandemic. Well, no one wants to go into renal failure, so apparently the ultrasound was a go. My bad.
I went to the Summa Green Medical Center that is attached to the ER. Tiffany was my sonographer. She is incredible. She made me feel comfortable and took every precaution with social distancing. Did I mention she was incredible? So nice!
Last night I found that there is no evidence of a stone in my kidney. I passed that little jerk at some point. It broke down and I never saw it come out- TMI I know.
My point in telling you this is two-fold. 1. Those who get kidney stones have my respect. They are the worst! So drink your water, watch your salt, but sometimes you just get em!
And 2. Those working in our healthcare system right now- doctors, nurses, all healthcare professionals from those taking appointments to those cleaning the buildings are rock stars. I mean you always are, but especially now. When we hear the governor talk about how we need to stay home so they can work safely and treat not only those affected by this virus, but also those having babies, those with say kidney stones, those who get in an accident, you get it. They are on the front lines. They are pushing their sleeves up, washing their hands and doing their jobs, no questions asked. Rock. Stars. I wish thank you was enough, but it is not. They made me feel comfortable and at ease. That is a victory in itself. We will get through this.
Stay home. They will go to work and we will be forever grateful. I know I am- me and my kidney.