July 16, 2015

Phew! Hard 2 Months!

Oh my Nelly!  What a ride this has been.  So as my last post stated I was having some kidney issues... Well let me tell you, this has been the toughest 2 months on my body, psych, metal health I've ever endured.  And yes... I might be a little dramatic, but dang...8 weeks down!!!  That's enough to drive anyone around the looney bin.  Let me tell you how this all began...and might I remind you, I was training for a 1/2 Ironman on July 5.  

I finished school April 24, promptly went home to visit my mom and woke up that following Wednesday with horrible rib cage pain.  Like I had pulled a muscle.  It was very weird.  It was a hot pain.  No walk in clinic in Sarnia, so I had to wait until I came home.  Then JD was at work and I was home with 2 kids.  By Tuesday I was miserable, it was getting worse not better.  Off to the Dr I go.  Diagnosis...kidney stones.  With a pretty sever kidney infection.  He was astonished I hadn't come in sooner.  I take the antibiotics, and am still in agony, passing the stones.  It was like 36 hours of hard labor but no minutes in between contractions.  And no glorious ending.  FYI, I was entered to run a 1/2 marathon 5 days after seeing the Dr.  It was JD's first and my 3rd.  Well I still ran it!  Slowly but I powered through with a finishing time of 2:11!  Not bad!  And I was slowly starting to feel better. But that was very short lived...  The following Tuesday I passed another stone, then another on Thursday.  So now we are 3 weeks into this gong show that is the kidney saga 2015.  At this point the Dr sends me for an ultra sound.  Blood tests and urine tests are all clear.  Now this is where it gets a little dicier...

I have Medullary Sponge Kidneys....  
  1. Medullary Sponge Kidney (also known as Cacchi–Ricci disease) is a congenital disorder of the kidneys characterized by cystic dilatation of the collecting tubules in one or both kidneys. Individuals with medullary sponge kidney are at increased risk for kidney stones and urinary tract infection.
I've known this for a year now.  This was found when I went through all my colon testing. Preventative testing for colon cancer .  It's really not a big deal.  I've had this since birth, it's a birth defect.  I have it in both kidneys.  But for some reason it really alarms the ultra sound techs.  I think mine might be a little wonky to look at or something, because the techs do not make me feel good about what they are seeing, but my Dr says it's fine.

Regardless...ultrasound showed 6 more stones on the left and 3 more on the right!  FCUK!!!  Now it is only my left that has been sore.  My entire left flank.  Including my rib cage.  I continue to battle the stones, but the pain is way less intense than the first 3 stones.  (I really think I've just perfected the right combo of drugs to deal with the pain.)  At this point I am still trying to train.  I do a 110 km bike ride (60 miles).  And I'm still running, not huge distance but managing 8 miles.  Just zero swimming. My flank hurts WAY too much.  

June 8, 2015 - there I sit on my back step.  Hunched over to stretch said sore flank.  I cough.  Not a big horrible cough.  But a decent clear the junk cough (as I've been battling infections and sore my cough was becoming wet).  And I feel a POP.  A paralyzing, heavy, ringing in your ears, cold sweat POP.  And I know I can not move...  I bang on the door and JD comes running.  (as things had been that horrible, there were times the pain got so bad I passed out)  He helps me to my feet, and I say "Oh No, something is very, very wrong...."  breathing is very tough and shallow.  And I am having shooting awful pain.  BUT it is Lola's Birthday!  So I limp into the house, grab my trusty narcotics, and try to pull out the rest of the night...I ended up standing in the front hallway sobbing, as they were outside on a walk...It was awful.

I can't do anything tonight.  No one will watch the girls and I can not drive myself.  So I wait until morning.  I drop the girls off at the sitter and drive to the emergency.  There I am diagnosed with a pulled rib muscle.  They x-ray my chest, check my urine, take blood samples, and send me away with anti inflammatories.   I do as I'm told.  I medicate and take it a little easier.  I pull out of my 1/2 ironman.  There is 4 weeks left to train and this pulled muscle could delay me another 2 weeks. But...I'm still running.  And I go to the Chiro as it's a pulled muscle, surely he can stretch it out..?

June 29, 2015 - Lucy's Birthday.  I go for a run.  4.5 miles.  I hydrate the whole way.  As I'm a little uncomfortable still.  Ok I'm still in too much pain for this to be okay...  But I get through the day. The next morning though, I can not stop crying.  The pain is just getting worse and worse.  I'm hearing a constant popping and crackling from my left flank.  My flank is on fire.  I go back to Emergency.  Again, urine check = shows infection..?  Blood work =  clear?  And this time they do an ultrasound = no stones, but an enlarged kidney..?  Diagnosis...another kidney infection.  Another round of antibiotics.

July 5th - 6th day of second round of antibiotics...I march myself into my GP's office to ensure that the infection is gone.  At this point I have been taking gravol everyday and I have lost 4 lbs. in under a week.  I just feel like garbage.  Testing shows infection is cleared.  Dr advises though that they only x-rayed my lungs, did not look at the rib cage.  I should not still be in this kind of pain.  Referred for another x-ray.  And x-ray reveals....multiple rib fractures.  When the nurse calls to advise me of the findings, she says "but you know this...you were in a car accident correct?"  Ummm No!  I coughed! So now they are thinking that this is the start of osteo.  

It is now July 16...I am finally feeling 80% better.  I am on very few painkillers through the day.  And I have run 6 miles so far this week, with one upper body workout thrown in there.  I still am having crackling and popping in my mid ribs, so I know they aren't fused back together quite yet, but the pain is totally manageable from where I have been.  

Through all this JD completed the 1/2 Ironman!  He rocked the SH!T out of it, with a finishing time of 6 hours a 58 minutes.  (Muskoka 1/2 Ironman and Full is down as in the top 5 hardest, hill after hill after hill! )  I have still been in school, and we have made this as great of a summer as we can! But I'm so done with all of this medical drama.  I'm ready for a quite end of summer and fall! 

So my summer has consisted of 9 kidney stones, 2 kidney infections and multiple displaced rib fractures.  Phew!  I think I'm done!  But through all this I have had some great times.  We've had family from England (3 weeks), great visits with my parents, 3 major races, and a sad goodbye to my BFF who moved to Edmonton.  

If you have followed along!  High Fives!  I thought those that actually do read this blog would want the legit reason for my absence.  Too much pain and too fried from the narcotics to write anything coherent!  But I'm bouncing back y'all!  Here I come!

Much Love!

*1/2 Ironman is 70.3 miles total distance in one endurance race.  Swim 1.2 mile, bike 56 miles, then run 13.1 miles. 


Jos said...

Oh my gosh, this is so awful to hear. I am so sorry!!

S said...

Oh wow, how awful! I can't believe you continued your ironman training through all this; you are a warrior!

I hope you are back to full health soon. Take care of yourself.