Oh, what a pain!

Pain is what the patient says it is;  Every patient has a different pain threshold ; Every patient shows pain in different ways; Pain takes over your body in a variety of different ways…..  Just a few points that, as Nurses, we practice everyday, to respect patients’ pain and treat everyone as individual. But when you experience pain yourself, it makes you see things quite differently!

One comment from this week has really stuck in my mind…. I got discharged from hospital on Saturday and then had a really rough weekend at home with lots of pain. I rang my Consultant again Monday to see if she would reconsider waiting 6 weeks to re-scan due to my pain and she replied “well, you didn’t seem to be in too much pain!” I was too shocked to reply to be honest. … Because I wasn’t rolling around my bed crying and screaming, she assumed I wasn’t in too much pain?  I know it may shock people to hear, but I am quite a private person when it comes to emotions like crying and I would have to be completely comfortable before I cry in front of someone…..so certainly not a Consultant that I also work with in  professional capacity!

Crying makes you vulnerable. Whether you want to or not, you’re letting down barriers and people are seeing a vulnerable side. Just as pain does!  I know I shouldn’t let her comment bother me but it makes me wonder….is that what everyone else thinks? “You shouldn’t be in this much pain”…..No I shouldn’t but I am. I have a pretty high pain threshold….. I have been troubled by Endometriosis in the past and it’s a pain that can’t really be explained but I became quite good at covering up the pain I was in.  I didn’t like to draw attention to it, it always felt like the more I spoke about it, the more aware of it I became so I got good at just carrying on.

I have been in constant pain, of varying degrees, for nearly 2 weeks now.  I am on lots of medications including Oral Morphine….sometimes it’s taking the edge off it, other times it’s not touching it. It’s been a bad day today – I woke up in quite bad pain which didn’t really improve with my morning drugs….then I had to go to the Drs for more prescriptions and take my sick note into work…..it doesn’t sound a lot but all that moving around, getting in and out of the car (thankfully my husband drove) made my pain worse.  Now, after dosing up, I do feel a bit more settled…..well my pain score is probably now a 5 rather than an 8 as it was earlier…celebrate the small things eh! 😉

Drugs, drugs, drugs…….nearly 2 weeks since my pain started and almost in a blink of an eye, my life now suddenly revolves around drugs!  Clock watching all the time – when can I take the next lot?  When is this lot going to kick in?  When is this pain going to ease up?  What else can I take? And now I have to take even more drugs to counteract the side effects of the other drugs…..a vicious cycle! In only 2 weeks, I find myself reliant on drugs….albeit, a temporary reliance but a reliance all the same! Quite a scary thought, how easily and quickly things can change! 😦

For me, these 2 weeks have felt like forever…pain can be extremely exhausting but it has only been 2 weeks! Makes me think of all my friends who are chronic pain sufferers, those who have had pain all day, every day for years and years! 😦 My friends with Cystic Fibrosis who not only have trouble breathing, but are in pain doing so as well, every single breath! What a horrible prospect!  It is easy to see why chronic illness and pain can lead to depression, it really is!  So, a shout out to all my chronically ill or disabled friends, whatever your illness or condition may be…I admire your strength – you’re all amazing! ❤

Excuse the cliche but at least, I can see light at the end of the tunnel….an end to my pain…well I hope so anyway. Some people aren’t so fortunate! ❤

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Fertility Podcast.

So, a few weeks ago, I was invited to talk on a Fertility Podcast. Natalie, who I have been talking to on Twitter, set up the podcast in 2014 after going though fertility treatment herself.

I like it although it is very strange listening to myself! Hope it does some good for Saskia! 🙂  Have a listen and let me know what you all think! 😀

Fertility Podcast

People keep asking me how I am feeling, regarding my cyst. Well I really don’t know. To be honest, I feel all over the place. Sometimes, I am in agony and not even the morphine is touching it….sometimes it’s not so bad but then for no rhyme or reason, it gets uncontrollable again.

I am tearful, concerned, uncomfortable, bored, exhausted and frustrated….. I am always telling my patients not to ‘Google their symptoms’ but sometimes, you just can’t help it. I am finding a lot of contradictory information but most states that a cyst 6cm or more is unlikely to settle by itself!  From what I can find, this is pretty much how my insides look right now! 😦

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As silly as it sounds, I just want to get back to work. I love my job and I already missed my teaching session today! I have so much else going on right now with little projects and things I am working on. I am trying to keep my brain as active as possible but when I need to take morphine, I get hazy and end up falling asleep. I am no good at taking it easy….I always feel guilty, like I am not doing enough!

I don’t have time for this! How long is this going to go on for and how much more am I going to miss? 😦 😦 😦

Note to Self : Don’t cough, sneeze or laugh……it HURTS!

I thought we were Ovar-y this…

I started writing this blog last week….but time and time again, I’ve had to stop because of the pain I was in… It’s never taken me so long to write one blog…but here’s why….

I have been writing this blog for nearly 3 years now and although it has been about the journey I have been on since I started donating my eggs, these blogs have been about things I am doing for other people….donating eggs, raising awareness of infertility issues, crowdfunding etc…..it’s not been about me or my personal situation, well I am afraid that one needs to tell my latest tale.

Last Saturday, I was on a night shift when I got some pain on the left side of my abdomen and then got some bleeding…..I thought the same as most women would think – that I’d got my period. I don’t really have periods anymore due to having the implant in my arm which is to help my Endometriosis and Polycystic Ovaries.  The pain was pretty bad but I hadn’t had a proper period for a long, long time so that would explain the pain and the heavy bleeding. I didn’t think much of it but finished my shift and went to bed with a hot water bottle.

The pain continued and my usual painkillers didn’t seem to be helping. By Wednesday the pain was pretty intense and the bleeding had stopped – well it had stopped after just a few hours so it hadn’t been a period after all….. It was a different pain from what I’d had in the past – radiating all down my left side, aching all the time along with a stabbing pain like someone was putting a red hot poker right up my Fallopian tube – lovely!

I went to see my Practice Nurse to get checked out, something didn’t feel right. One touch of my tummy and I nearly it the roof – next my observations – heart rate 117bpm, hhmm I wonder why!  As I was, the Nurse was concerned so booked me an emergency appointment with the Dr in a few hours time.

Back I went and had another painful examination. I then had to endure all the same, difficult questions about why I knew that this couldn’t be an ectopic pregnancy!  My husband and I have learnt to be quite succinct when answering that yes, we are 100% sure that there is no chance of a pregnancy! Answers are short and sweet and move on to the next one…..but it doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt, that it doesn’t feel like a knife is being twisted every time, that’s it’s not hard to maintain the smile when you just want to cry…especially when you know that this pain is gynaecology related – again! Anyone who is infertile has probably noticed that, whenever you find yourself in that conversation again, people cannot just accept your first answer that you can’t have children, they always feel that they have to try to offer a solution or come up with an idea that you haven’t already been over in your own mind a thousand times……but rather than appearing rude or ungrateful for their suggestions, you smile politely and explain calmly, “no that won’t work either”….

Anyway…after I guided the conversation back onto trying to figure out the pain in my tummy, rather than fertility options for us, the Doctor told me she wanted me to head up to the hospital to be seen by the Gynaecology Consultant – now! She had the same suspicions as I, which was that I had a troublesome ovarian cyst…..so off I went, with my husband, to the hospital.

Yet more of the same old questions about our complex history and children…or lack of! I always try to stay lighthearted and calm with the constant questioning since, after all, people are trying to help…..but when the pain is intense, I am tired from a sleepless night the night before and I am greeted with a speculum to accompany the third uncomfortable examination, I start to get irritable and tearful…..or very tearful….howling actually! I HATE speculums – just the sight of them fills me with dread. For me with my past issues, it is like like an instrument for torture and today was no different!  Anyway, after another *rather rough* examination whilst being told to ‘relax’ “ERM – HOW WITH THAT THERE??!”, the Consultant concluded that I was in pain! 😀 Yep really! So, I was admitted for pain relief and urgent ultrasound scans!  I was shown to my bed, given some Morphine, did admission paperwork, got more Morphine and got comfortable in bed ….with a bit more Morphine!  Thankfully the pain started to subside as I fell into a drug induced (but short and disturbed) sleep!

The next morning, after some more Morphine, I went for two ultrasound scans. As we suspected, I had a big cyst on my left ovary – 6cm to be exact! Wowcher! And yes Mr Sonographer, it does hurt when you poke it with the probe!!! Anyway, back to the ward, for more Morphine (are you sensing a theme here?) and hopefully a treatment plan.  There I was thinking, ok so we know what it is, cut it out, some time to recover then get back to work! Simples, done…..or not quite so simples! 😦  The Consultant wants to wait 6 weeks before doing another scan (I got that reduced from 3 months!!!!) to check on the cyst and if it needs surgery, I will then be put on the loooooong waiting list! 😦

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Rocking the hospital gown! 😉

So, here I am, it is now gone midnight on the 3rd day of writing this blog and I have just had some more Morphine…… As my eyelids are starting to feel heavy, I am asking myself ‘why’?  Why have my Polycystic Ovaries and Endometriosis pains left me alone  for so long yet decide to rear their ugly heads again now? Why now?  Its been laying dormant for 6 years, they didn’t even trouble me through 2 cycles of egg donation. Why now – when I have a really busy year ahead with work projects, fundraisers, social plans and life generally!

I’ve been so busy concentrating on the Crowdfunding page for Saskia, I never considered that my own gynae issues would start to cause me issues again! It’s like they like to be in control – to remind me that they’re still there, still lurking, just waiting to flare up again whenever they decide!

I know this is not my fault, but when pain is so intense and distracting, rational thinking can go straight out the window.  I am trying to figure out just how I am going to get through the next 6 weeks if the pain continues as it is at the moment!  As much as I joke, I don’t like relying on Morphine, and my bowels certainly aren’t keen on it either! 😉

And one of the hardest things to hear, even though I have heard it a thousand times, is when people suggest that “getting pregnant can be great for helping Endometriosis and PCOS”…… Since I have always been quite open about our fertility issues, I forget sometimes that not everyone knows that we can’t have children and I always stare open mouthed at the suggestion – probably to stop myself replying “well, yes, wouldn’t that just be absolutely blooming marvellous!”  But really, we’re ok just the two of us, perfect as we are…….well, apart from the cyst – that, quite honestly, can do one! 😀

Apologies for rambling on a bit….blame the Morphine! 😉

Goodnight all!

YouTube debut…

Hello to all my lovely followers!

First things first, thank you to everyone who has already donated to Saskia’s Crowdfunding Page! Within a week, we have reached £575… that’s 7% already! We have a long way to go but it’s a great start so THANK YOU! 🙂 Link is below again ….

https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/amelia-abby

We have all been racking our brains for ideas of fundraisers to do which could add the total. If anyone has any ideas or you fancy hosting an event to help Saskia, please just let me know!

You may have already seen that I made my YouTube debut yesterday! I made a video telling a bit of my history and Saskia’s Story.  So there I am  – after years of writing, you can finally see me! 🙂 “Hello!” #waves#

I was also invited to do an interview for a Fertility Podcast yesterday about my journey and Saskia’s Story – @fertilitypoddy on Twitter. I think it went quite well and should be live within a few weeks – will let you know when I know. I am also starting to get to grips with the world of Twitter now too – if you want to follow me, I am @EggDonor29.

Plus, there have also been some recent developments and I may be working a bit more with some fertility groups in marketing, awareness and advertising since they love the media work I have done and my blog so much! 😀  Thanks again to all of you who have been reading for so long, getting so much feedback from you all has been very motivating over the years!

Please do take a look at the video and please share, share, share! 🙂

THANKS AGAIN, will keep you posted!

Much love as always! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx