Monday, March 26, 2012

A trip to the ER and some other scary things...

These past 24 hours have been crazy to say the least. 
In fact...I'm having a hard time even processing it all.
But I want to document everything because I know as I look back it will probably all be a blur and I want to remember God's faithfulness and sovereignty through it all. 
Here goes...

For the past 6 months I have been having random allergic reactions. 
I feel totally fine and then all of a sudden an attack comes on. 
It always starts with swelling and itching in my inner ear
and then next thing I know it my whole body is bright red and covered in raised welts/hives that are very itchy. 
Then I take a Claritin...wait a couple hours and am fine. 
Well a couple of months ago a few new symptoms arose. 
Along with the redness/hives I was also vomiting and having flu like symptoms. 
But within a couple of hours, after I took the Claritin I was feeling better.
After the new symptoms started arising I knew things were getting worse and I needed to find out what was going on so my primary doctor referred me to an allergist. 
The allergist did a skin test to see if I was allergic to anything and nothing really came up (just mildly allergic to dust mites and horses). 
The allergist told me that hives can also be a symptom of an underlying medical condition so he ordered some blood work to rule out a bunch of other things out. 
He also had me start taking Claritin and Zyrtec once a day to hopefully prevent another attack from happening.
The blood work came back with a positive ANA which usually indicates some kind of autoimmune disorder.
So the allergist referred me to a rheumatologist (which I have been waiting until today to see...the earliest appointment was a month away). 

Then yesterday as I was at our house with Aaron, my brother, and his fiance (and the kids were down for their nap) my inner ears started to itch and swell and I could feel another attack coming on. 
I told Aaron and he told me to call the doctor to see what I could take (since I had already taken a Claritin that morning and clearly it was not working).
Before I could even call the doctor I was vomiting and laying on the ground unable to move. 
Next thing I knew Aaron was yelling my name asking if I knew what was going on. 
Apparently I had passed out and was completely unconscious.
Aaron picked me up, laid me on the bed and called 911. 
Just as he was giving the 911 lady our address to have an ambulance come to the house I told Aaron to just take me to the hospital.
So he picked me up (I still was totally out of it and couldn't walk) put me in the car and we headed to the ER. 
As we were driving to the ER I was still out of it.
My vision was very blurry, I had severe cramps in my thighs and stomach, was bright red over my whole body, shaking violently (like my whole body was shivering) and still very nauseous. 
As soon as we got to the ER I was taken back.
By this time I was having diarrhea, all of my fingers were purple and I was still having all of the symptoms above.  
At the ER they hooked me up to a bunch of monitors, gave me fluids, steroids and Benadryl, took some blood tests, and a bunch of other stuff.
It took about 1 1/2-2 hours before I felt well enough to even talk but slowly I started feeling better and getting less red.   
 After about 4 hours I was feeling much better and we were just waiting for my blood work to come back. 
Finally it came back and everything was totally normal. 
But obviously everything was not normal because that stuff does not happen to normal people. 
So they sent me home knowing that I was supposed to be seeing the rheumatologist the next day (which was my scheduled appointment this whole time). 

So today I went to see the Rheumatologist. 
He hears my whole history of attacks including yesterdays events, looks at all of my labs, asks me a million questions and tells me he has no idea what I have :) 
But that it sounds very serious and it is clearly getting worse. 
He had a couple of hunches as to what it might be (all of which are very scary).
He ordered an urgent CT scan which I will hopefully get by Wednesday (just waiting for authorization from insurance) as well as a TON of blood work to test for every autoimmune disease as well as a bunch of other stuff.

So that's the scoop. 
For now we wait and pray and trust the Lord. 
I'm so thankful that He is in control of all things. 
And that He is so so good. 

At the ER.
Aaron brings out his camera and I give him the you better not be planning to take a picture of me right now look and then he tells me, "Babe, you will want it for your blog." He was right. 

Kind of hard to tell from the picture but that is my very red hand and purple fingers (next to the doctors hand for comparison). 
She told us to take this picture for the records. 

The rheumatologist sent me straight to the lab to get the blood work after my appointment. 
When I sit down to get my blood drawn the tech tells me, "Wow! I don't think I've ever seen someone get tested for so many things. What's wrong with you?"
Thanks lady. 
Hopefully they will be able to find out some answers with those 10 vials full of blood! 

After all of my appointments today I picked up the kids (who were with my parents) and stopped by the grocery store to get some food since the fridge was e.m.p.t.y. 
Just as I was heading towards the front of the grocery store to check out (with a cart full of food) the electricity in the whole store goes out. 
I just laugh to myself and think of course this is happening
I call Aaron to tell him about the blackout and he tells me that one of our friends from our community group had just called to tell him that they were bringing dinner (and groceries) to our house.
Of course they were.
 The Lord had it all worked out before I even knew there was a problem. 
Because he's God and all knowing and cool like that.
He is so gracious to give me such a tangible reminder of his grace and love and provision at the exact time that I need it. 

So even though I'm scared and left without answers I know the One who's in charge of it all, who knows all the answers and loves me more than I could ever imagine. 
What a good place to be. 


Lena K. said...

Praying for you and trusting in the Lord with you.

Kristal said...

What a scary situation yo be in! Thank god you were not alone and your kids were napping:/. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. As for the bloodwork, I have to share: I had my daughter 7 weeks early with preeclampsia so before we thought about number 2 my dr ordered blood tests. I went to the lab not knowing how many tests there were. As the student starts pulling tube after tube and gets to the magical number of 15 I'm not sure which one of us wanted to pass out more:/

Krulls in Haiti said...

That is so like God to send a tangible reminder that He is with you and loves you... praying for you and your family, so that you can get the right diagnosis quickly.

courtney toney said...

So scary! I will be praying for you- specifically that you can get an answer soon. I know that one of the most frustrating things is not knowing what is going on with your body and having to wait for a diagnosis.

Such an awesome moment of God's sovereignty to remind you that he is in control.

Mommy Running Diaries said...

I feel kind of strange that my first comment is on something so personal to you and you don't know me in real life but I started following your blog a few posts back when I was looking for a pattern for owls for my 1 yr old niece's room theme and i was looking for something to match a quilt i made her and i found your pillows. your posts are so great i just kept reading, you are the mom i see myself wanting to be when we have kids soon. anyways, i just wanted to say that after reading this it must be so terrifying for you and your family to live through but you will look back and this will be the BEST thing to happen to you because i know people with scary sounding diseases: lupus, fibromyalgia, MS, depression, anxiety and they all say that they wish they had gone to the doctor sooner because once you have answers and a treatment plan your symptoms can all but disappear! And there is comfort in having information and being able to google your diagnosis (and not a long list of symptoms)and finding real people with real tips on living your life again. I wish you the best of luck and lots of prayers. <3 jo

Amy said...

I am sorry that you are going through this! how amazing is Our Father, what a beautiful , sovereign God we have.
He even provided you supper and groceries.
It is good you can see the small things.
And i love that your husband took your pic for the blog. Husbands are amazing arn't they!

The Miller Five said...

I am so sorry Kristin! I am praying hard for you. Through all of this, you have a positive attitude. Not many people would. Keep relying on God's strength and the answers will come.

Lani Derrick said...

He is good and always provides. i'll be thinking about you and sayign prays for answers and wisdom.

Erika said...

I am praying for you!God is good!

Kristin said...

Wow, I hope you find out some answers soon. Praying.

M Mommy to 4 said...

It's so funny how the Lord steps in when you need help and don't even know it. I had friends bring my family dinner every week for the first while when my husband was deployed. She didn't even know I was pregnant and so full of morning sickness that the thought of making dinner made me sick! I hope that you are able to continue to see those blessings and that your blood work will come back with answers for you that you'll be able to work with.

Sarah said...

Best wishes with this journey! I know God is with you and will continue to be. You and your family are in my prayers.

Cortney said...

We're praying for you, Aaron, and the kids. Praying for answers and faith. This is scary news, but He is obviously working in your family even in the scary times.

SarahJarnagin said...

Praying you get answers and solutions. Our God is a big God and nothing is bigger than Him!
One of my closest friends was recently diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder as well and she's a young mom of 4. Prayers & blessings.

Briar said...

Praying for you and thinking about you even though we have never met! I will be eagerly waiting for an update! Glad to know your that your life is totally under His control. may that knowledge comfort you greatly.

Jayne Ortiz said...

So glad I read this and now know how to pray for you. Hopefully you'll get a diagnosis soon. Our whole family will be praying for all of you!

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