I have a chance to update.. so I'm going to do it.
Its 5 am and i cant sleep. I guess most of you that read this also read my facebook.. but id like to type out all the events leading up to this morning.. I feel like there are some things i learned on my journey the last 48 hours that i think can maybe ease peoples mind if they ever go through the same thing.
It all started Sunday, on Easter. The day was going great. Other than the fact that i accidentally bought thigh meat instead of breast meat for the fajitas, everything tasted wonderful. (I dont like thigh chicken meat and either does Wes) oops. I guess that should have been the least of my worries given what was to come. It was so much fun having family over at my house to celebrate Jesus rising from the dead for our sins. The girls Jolie and Bryleigh went on an egg hunt. I am lucky enough the have a Brother and Sister-in-law out here that have girls almost the exact same ages as my girls. Jolie is 18 months, bryleigh is 15 months. Brooklynn is 3 months, and i believe Nova will be 2 months in a couple of days. Boy did we sure plan that one good! lol. The egg hunt was so cute. The girls did a great job collecting all their eggs and putting them in their baskets. I tried to get candies and small toys that would be fun to hold and play with. Bryleigh loves bracelets and rings and stuff, and Jolie i believe does too so i tried to get some fun "pretties" for them to wear. Along with candies of course! It was a great day.
Sunday evening i was sitting on the couch talking with Wes' mom because she stayed late to hang out. I started noticing that i just wasnt feeling "right"... I kept feeling my head thinking that maybe i felt warm, but wasnt too concerned because i never get fevers. Around 6 i went to lay down and by 7 i was in excrutiating pain. I took my temp and it was 102.2.. Really odd for me. I get strept throat pretty consistently once a year so i was thinking maybe that was it. My throat didnt hurt so i checked my body for any sort of rash. Some years i get the Strep rash instead of Strep throat, but not usually a high fever. My fever never goes about 100.5 because its normally low 97.0 to start. The headache hit around 7:30 and by 8pm my temp was at 103.5. by 9 it reached 104 and i finally took some medicine. The headache was in the back bottom of my head, and my neck hurt so bad. Oh the pain in my neck was so excrutiating. I felt like somebody put a brace around my neck and wouldnt let me move it to ease the pain. It was stiff, and it hurt. I started alternating Tylenol and Ibuprofen every 4 hours and my fever would not go below 101.5. Although i felt much better at 101.5 than i did at 104. I had a very hard night and the next morning i woke up and it was back up to 103. I sat up to drink some water and went into a febrile seizure. As soon as i came back around from that i was laying face down in vomit all over our bed. Yucky. Thats the point Wes decided to stay home from work. He told his superior at work what was going on and i was still refusing to go to the doctor. Luckily his superior told him that either i go to the doctor or he come to work. He was saying this to ultimatem me into going to the dr, not to be mean. I agreed to go to an Urgent care not having a clue what was wrong with me. And really, I know these symptoms, but i was way too out of it to put them together. My sister in law agreed to watch the kids for me while we went to the local Urgent care that Tri-care (our military insurance) sent us to.
Once we arrived at Urgent care the doctor came out and immediately sent me over to the emergency room. He wanted me to go by ambulance, still not saying what he thought i had i assume out of fear of scaring me.. Wes insisted on driving me, which i rathered. I mean other than the awful headache and neckpain, i could walk, i was aware of what was going on, and i wasnt nearly as confused or disoriented as the morning. I felt fine compared to first thing in the morning and the night before.
When we got to the ER they took us back right away. They put a mask over me and thats when i started to get scared. Blood work was done immediately, within the first 5 minutes of being at the hospital. My temp went down a little, and was at 102.4. at the urgent care, the nurse took my temp with one of the plastic disposable strips and tried to say it was only 99 the doctor at the ER told me that those are very inaccurate and theres no way my temp got that low a few minutes before that lol. I agreed because we have an ear thermometer that is really accurate and it was saying 102.5, so the 99 was really suprising to me!!
The nurse came in to tell me that they think i have meningitis. She explained to me that there is a Bacteria Meningitis, and a Viral meningitis. The bacterial form is the very bad one. She said if i had that, my children would have to be tested, along with whoever they have been around. I immediately started to cry. I was the least bit concerned for myself. My precious children, and precious nieces might have this because of me. I have never felt more helpless in my life. I texted Cheyanne my sister in law to ask her to check them for fevers, she said they didnt feel warm at all, so for the time being i was slightly at ease. Wes' temperature was consistently checked and it never went above 98.
I got sent for a catscan because they wanted to rule out an anurism, or anything else on my brain that could be causing this. When the cat scan started, it hit me. Could this be it for me? If i have the bacterial meningitis i could die. I could go deaf, or blind, or any other really bad things could happen to me. I immediately started to pray for my family. I cried so hard in that catscan. I prayed that God would help Wes take care of my children if something happens to me. I was so scared. On top of that, i was so scared for my babies. This could not be happening. I was scared that if i have this, not only was it me that it would affect, it was everyone i was around. I was scared that my children would have to undergo all this medical testing, and have a hospital stay. I was scared that my baby nieces would have to get tested. I worried for everyone. The military pays 100 percent of our hospital/medical bills, but not everyone elses insurance pays that much. I was worried about all the copays that this would cost everyone, and about what illnesses can potentially come from this. This was i believe the scariest moment for me.
Cat scan looked great. Thank God. and btw, i actually have a brain, its official :)
After the catscan i had a very thorough physical exam in which i had every single physical marker there is for meningitis. They were very certain this is what it was. I couldnt lift my next to touch my chest without my neck getting so tight and causing EXTREME central back of the neck/bottom back of the head pain. When i lift my legs it elicited an immediate response of pain in the same area in the neck. That is when i finally got my pain meds. So thankful for pain meds!!! I call the pain meds they gave me "insta-drunk". I was trying to tell the nurse something when they kicked in, and then she started bouncing up and down because i couldnt see straight. They gave me benadryl, motrin, phenyl which is a pain med, another pain med, steroids, antibiotics, iv fluids, and potassium pills. My potassium levels were really low and my white blood count was at 15, which is a sign of infection. The other pain med they gave me i cannot remember the name, but the nurse told me it was the strongest stuff they have, since i am HIGHLY allergic to morphine. And yes, it was SO strong. It was so strong that it went in through the IV, and immediately BURNED in my throat. burned bad.
The doctor came back in and told me i was going to have a spinal tap. Time number 3 that i started to cry. I was really upset about that. I had heard really bad things about spinal taps and how bad they hurt. I called my mom really upset and she said something that really helped me a lot. I am getting this spinal tap, so that my babies dont have to. If i get this spinal tap, and i do have it, everyone will be treated with an antibiotic immediately. I would be the only person that would have to be given the spinal tap. So when i looked at it that way, the spinal tap wasnt as scary, it was just necessary. I had to get in position like i was getting an epidural. Wes came over and held my hands really tight. I didnt want to move at all because i always fear getting paralysis or something from it. They gave me the local anestesia in my back, and then drew the spinal fluid. It was a piece of cake. I'm not going to lie, it hurt.. but it didnt HURT. The headache, the neckache, was far worse. It was pretty much a bee sting, and im glad i was able to calm down enough to be brave and get it. I am thankful for my moms words, making the procedure much easier to get. No matter what you have been through with your mom, they are still the person that you want when you are going through things like this.
Immediately we knew that it wasnt bacterial. I was so relieved. I think i cried again. he said if it was bacterial, 9 times out of 10 the spinal fluid wouldnt have been clear. That was the point that i let my sister in law know what they thought it was. I didnt want to tell her at first, because i didnt want her to worry unnecessarily if it wasnt that. We rested in the room for the next 45 minutes and the two doctors that had been working on me and my nurse came back in the room. The chief resident came in with them and told me the blood work had every indication of meningitis, but the spinal fluid came back negative for it. Since i had every physical marker for it, they are still diagnosing me with Viral meningitis. I was released a few hours later, with instructions to come back immediately if my fever gets high again, or if my headaches get unbarable again, and then i will be admitted to go through the illness in the hospital. (I wanted to go home).
Cheyanne will have the girls for the next 3 days, and wes will pick them up after work. We will see how i feel Friday, but i am sure i will be feeling much better by then.
All in all i want to say that as crazy as it sounds, i can see the positive in all of this big time. I have been go go go sincei had brooklynn, and my body has become so exhausted phsycally and emotionally. I feel like maybe this is God's way of forcing me to take a break. a much needed break.
I realize that meningitis is pretty rare, but if you or anyone you know ever have these symptoms- high fever, EXTREMELY bad headache in the back of the head, and neck, please go to the emergency room right away. It is nothing to sit around and wait with. The headache may even circle around to the front. The spinal tap is nothing if you have had an epidural. It is no worse. To me it was even better because you arent having a contraction while they are giving it.
and finally, i would like for everyone to say a prayer. I want everyone to thank God for the fact that it was not the bacterial kind. And that four babies that i love were not put at risk for this.