Thank You to You All ….[And, Get a Second Opinion]


View from my hospital bed the night before I was released

This is my first ‘Thought for Thursday’ in a few weeks. Many on Twitter and Facebook know that this is due to the fact that I was in the hospital for 24 days. This blog isn’t about that [But, to quickly recap for those who may have missed it, I initially had an “attack” in the middle of February. I was rushed to two different hospitals on three separate occasions, misdiagnosed and sent home with pain medication.  After my fourth – and most dramatic “attack”, I was again rushed to a third hospital, diagnosed with pneumonia and admitted. I thought I might be in the hospital for a few days, a week at most. As it turned out, I was in the hospital for 24 days.]

During my 24 days in the hospital, I had many painful procedures. There were complications and issues with every single procedure I had – from drawing blood [I had to have special people called to draw blood] and inserting IVs [they finally had to call a nurse they called the “vein whisperer’, and eventually had to insert a PICC line],  the

There were complications when I had the thoracocentesis and I felt every inch of the needle going in. It was extremely painful. The Dr. apologized afterwards and said that they usually weren’t that difficult.

two most painful procedures, a thoracocentesis and a chest tube insertion. Although this was the most painful thing I have ever been through in my life, it was also the most enlightening.

From day one, I received so many prayers, get well wishes, emails, calls and visits.  Some people I hadn’t even heard from in weeks, months – even years. Those were very pleasant surprises. The prayers, graphics, videos were just as healing as the pain medication.  I even received a few surprise calls and emails from some special people I wasn’t even aware knew of my condition. The main reason for this blog post is to say THANK YOU TO YOU ALL!

My biggest thanks must go to my friend, Millette. After my third trip to the hospital, she left her home at 4am in the morning to pick me up from my home, so that I could spend the weekend at her home. I told her it wasn’t necessary because resting at home, would be no different from resting at her home. THANK GOD she persisted because I had the worst attack at her place. I could not breathe, I could not talk, I would have been unable to call 911 since I was having

One of my nurses. They were amazing. After I had the chest tube taken out, everyone was so happy. Two of my nurses said that I was their favorite patient and some even dropped in to say hello even when they weren’t assigned to me.

issues with my cell phone. She kept me alert and on my feet until the ambulance arrived, because the 911 operator told her if I were to lay down my lungs could collapse. The episode was very chaotic and we both said afterwards it was the scariest thing either of us had ever been through. She was with me when I was diagnosed, and we both breathed a sigh of relief finally knowing why I had been in so much pain for the past few weeks and had to keep getting rushed to the hospital.

Every day that I was in the hospital, she called me three times a day to check on me and visited me approximately every other day. There is no way I can ever repay her for being there for me during the most physically challenging thing I have ever been through in my life. Just the thought of having someone like her in my life brings me to tears.

One cautionary piece of advice – ALWAYS GET AT LEAST TWO DIAGNOSIS’. It took me four visits to three different hospitals before they got it right.

THANK YOU, ONCE AGAIN AND BEST OF HEALTH TO YOU ALL!!! 🙂

In case you’re interested – below is a video of each of the three procedures I had while in the hospital. Be forewarned, it’s not easy to watch and I am SO glad I watched them AFTER I had them done. LOL

On the day I thought I was leaving the hospital, they came to get me for this surprise procedure

Chest tube insertion (actual procedure starts approx. 1 minutein). I pleaded to be put to sleep, but the surgeon said it was too dangerous.

I was an extremely “hard stick” as they put it, so they eventually had to insert a PICC line [to draw blood and administer my antibiotics]. My Dr. said it was a last resort since the end of the tube is so close to the heart.


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32 thoughts on “Thank You to You All ….[And, Get a Second Opinion]

  1. Hi, Silawn. Just wanted to check on you to see how you are doing. I pray that all is well and you are feeling much better!

    God Bless and have an awesome week!

    Tracey

    • Thank you, Tracey. I am doing so much better. For a while, I really thought it was possible that I was going to have to be on disability. In fact, my son asked me to move in with him and my landlord thought it was a good idea due to the pain I was in, my physical condition, and how many times I had to keep getting rushed to the hospital. Thankfully, I’m only in slight pain that is tolerable. Trust me, just the people I have profiled on this blog alone gives me cause to be very thankful and not complain. God bless you, too. Many blessings!

      • Thanks!! I’m so glad that it didn’t get to that point and you’re almost back to normal! I agree that we can see something every single day if we’re paying attention that reminds of how blessed we are and that things can always be worse. I believe being thankful releases that healing power when we need it too. 🙂

  2. I can totally relate to your reaction to the smell of yogurt. I even struggle when I go out to eat with friends and someone is sitting next to me with gobs of ranch dressing on their salad. I cannot stand that smell, not to mention how gross it looks and most people I know eat it. It’s something how foods affect us all differently. I guess that’s why we have so many to choose from! LOL!

    There is this one pastor I watch on TV sometimes who has some good prayers/confessions on his website I’ve used in the past to help me pray about certain situations. I am going to share the link in case you’re interested, he has some good scriptures/confessions on healing. http://changinglives.org/LifeSolutions/GodsPromisesForEveryNeed/tabid/2424/Default.aspx

    I hate that you are still having to endure the pain, on any level. Did the ER doctor make any recommendations on what to do regarding your enlarged heart or the ulcer or does he expect those to heal on their own as you get better?

    Wow, not even an aspirin? I wish I could say that! That’s a true blessing! I really hope the specialist will get you in as soon as possible, at least get you an appt scheduled so you know when you’ll be seen. I know that has to be frustrating.

    Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers! Take it easy and feel better!!

    Tracey

    • I ate ranch dressing by mistake once. It was not a pretty sight LOL

      I appreciate the link

      The ER doctor that said I had an enlarged heart and ulcer just said it in passing and told me to see a doctor regarding the pain. When I said, “Enlarged heart???” he said, “Oh, it’s okay. A lot of people have enlarged hearts. As far as the ulcer, he didn’t mention anything else about that. I was focused on the pain that was present in my chest from the Pneumonnia, since he was so blase about the other two ailments.

      Before this condition, I was rarely sick, so, I think the strongest thing I ever took when I was sick was Theraflu 🙂

      • Hi, Silawn! That does sound a bit blase on the doctor’s part but like you I’m sure he was focused on the main reason you were there. I am glad he told you so you can followup with your doctor. I trust that was the Lord ‘s leading and since he wasn’t alarmed you don’t have to be. 🙂

        I hope you’re feeling even better today!

        Have a wonderful weekend!

        Tracey

        • Well, in any other circumstance that may have been true – however, this is the same hospital that misdiagnosed me approx. 32 hours before another hospital diagnosed me with Pneumonia. Also, it’s the same hospital that the nurse (who I was told by several people to report) left a needle in my bed…among other unprofessional things she said and did while I was there. Also lol, since the last trip to this hospital, I’ve seen yet another doctor (while I still wait to see a specialist), who I told what was told to me by this doctor. She said that the enlarged heart is nothing to be so calm about and also that two of the medications that I had been on for almost three months causes ulcers (which I now have) and to stop taking them immediately. She also removed my stitches, which she said were too tight – something the other doctor dismissed when I told him I had severe pain in my side. So, him not being alarmed, was definitely no security. It was the second time I had gone to that hospital and sent away with a prescription for pain medication, only to be told by the next doctor that saw me, that there were issues. As part of the title of this post states – “get a second opinion” 🙂

          • Oh my goodness, thanks for clarifying that for me, I’m sorry I gave that doctor any credit. 😦 I do remember now commenting on that horrible nurse. Sounds like both the doctor and nurse need to be reported and possibly even the hospital. Thank God for the last doctor, sounds like she’s a lot more attentive and observant. I hate that you had to endure that pain because of the stitches for so long and I’m glad that is behind you now too!

            Have a good one! 🙂

            • Yes, several people have told me that I need to report the Dr. and nurse, from that hospital – as well, as my surgeon, from the other hospital. If it was just me, I probably would never get around to it since I don’t like drama; however, they could do the same to other patients, who may NOT get a second opinion or check their medications, etc. and it could lead to much worse health situations for them. I was so happy that that Dr. was on call – at the last hospital I went to. She really was a credit to her profession. I need to write a commendation letter for her!

  3. Praise God!! That’s awesome, Silawn! I am glad the pneumonia is gone and am continuing to pray that the specialist will have Godly wisdom to resolve the pain once and for all.

    Did you see my tweet from the other day, maybe last week, about probiotics? I think a good quality supplement (I use Garden of Life) will be very helpful to replace the good bacteria since you were on antibiotics for an extended time.

    Blessings to you and have a great weekend!

    Tracey

    • Thank you, Tracey. Yes – I am happy that the worse seems to be over. Hopefully, I can see a specialist as soon as possible before the inflammation and fluid gets worse (as it did last time). The two hospitals that tested me this week both said the pain is most likely due to Pleurisy – which is what I was initially diagnosed with two months ago. The pain is no joke, but, I feel better just knowing that I will be able to see a specialist and hopefully get a more definitive answer and resolution about what I can do to get rid of the pain. Keeping my fingers crossed that I will no longer have to be rushed to the hospital every week 🙂

      BTW, I missed your tweet. I only see tweets that are posted when I am actually on Twitter. I am taking a lot of medication, so, I will wait to get approval from the specialist as to what I can or cannot ingest. The Drs. and Nurses always ask me for a list of everything I am taking (including vitamins) because of the effects of certain medications when mixed with other things.

      Thanks so much, blessings to you and you have a great weekend, as well!

      • You’re welcome, Silawn! I hope you’re having a good day today. I totally understand about the medications and supplements, you don’t want to do anything to set you back unnecessarily. I just wanted to share that info in case they don’t mention it to you. Ideally we get our probiotics from foods but it’s mainly the fermented/soured foods like yogurt, sauerkraut, which I don’t like at all so I have no choice but to take the supplements. I am tempted to try sauerkraut, maybe if I could stomach a tablespoon a day, that would be better than nothing. However, not sure I can even handle that, yuk! LOL!

        Oh, I saw your tweet about getting in to see the specialist in 30 days. I know it could be worse but at the same time, I’d expect they’d have some type of schedule for more serious cases which I’d think you’d would qualify for considering what you’ve been through. At the least, I wonder if they could put you on a cancellation list just in case an appt opens up? Unfortunately, I don’t think doctors’ offices are always forthright with information like that so it might be worth asking about.

        Keeping you in prayer for favor with everyone involved so this can be resolved as quickly as possible.

        God Bless!

        Tracey

        • Oh, goodness – yogurt?!? LOL If I get close enough to even get a whiff of yogurt, I start to uncontrollably dry heave. Seriously. I think the last time I had sauerkraut was by mistake when I was a child hahaha.

          As far as the specialist, when the hospital gave me the info, I called to set up an appointment. The office said patients ‘could not’ set up the appt. and that they get the patients info from the hospital and it takes approx. 30 days for them to call me. However, I can call them in two weeks to check and see if they have my name on the schedule, yet. Thankfully, the pain is at a manageable level, for the most part, throughout the day; I just can’t over exert myself.

          Thanks so much for the prayers and God bless you, too.

          • LOL, a girl after my own heart! I remember a few years ago, I prayed and asked God to give me a taste for yogurt because I really wanted to eat something with the active cultures, I guess I felt like I was missing out because my sister could eat it with no problem. Well, I then discovered the Yoplait Whips and they are actually really good, strawberry was my favorite. I then tried the Activia and that wasn’t bad either but both of those have sugar so I didn’t eat it for long, it’s not as healthy as the real thing. I struggle with a lot of strong smelling foods, except for garlic. I don’t eat salad dressing (I recently started making my own with olive oil, lemon and garlic) or most anything with vinegar. I don’t like mustard or any white condiments – sour cream, mayonnaise. I felt like I was being tortured growing up with my mother and her hot sauce and french dressing. Don’t get me started on those darn chitlins!! I think I was the only one in the family that didn’t eat them. LOL!

            I’m glad to hear the pain is manageable. Oh, I see, they must have good reasons for handling the appts that way. Sounds like they take the time to evaluate their cases to make the right course of action. We’ll just keep praying that your healing will continue while you wait for that appt, everything will happen as God leads. Shoot, the specialist will just have to be the one to give you that clean bill of health! 🙂

            • When my son was a child, I would buy yogurt for him because he liked it, but, I told him he had to wash out the container before he threw it away because the smell would permeate throughout the kitchen and make me a little naseous and I would dry heave lol My body reacts that way when I smell most raw cheeses and certain ethnic dishes. In fact, just reading your first paragraph turned my stomach a little. Seriously. hahaha

              As far as the pain – it comes and goes. The lowest the pain level has ever been since February 17th (my first attack) is at a ‘3’. It’s just goes up in degrees. I’m not sure if I mentioned it, but, I was in the E.R. twice since being released. The second to last time I was in the E.R. the E.R. doctor said I had an enlarged heart (which he said a lot of people have) and an hiatal ulcer (which he said was most likely due to the stress my body endured during the month I was in the hospital). I’ve been experiencing pain in my chest, my side (the incision site) and my back. The pain in my side gets really bad sometimes (It’s at a ‘6’ as I type this). In fact, I called the surgeons office yesterday, to see if it was normal and to see if my stitches should have dissolved by now. The receptionist took my contact info and said she’d let the doctor know I called. I will be glad when I am no longer in pain, however, I am a very thankful, because it could be a lot worse. Hopefully, I will be able to see the specialist soon, because I am running out of pain medication and I would prefer not to have to take any more. Prior to this illness, I never even took aspirin lol

  4. Hi, Silawn. I sent you an email a couple of weeks ago after I saw this post. I’m so sorry to hear about all that you’ve been through and I want you to know that you are in my prayers for complete healing and restoration in your body, in the Name of Jesus!

    God Bless you!

    Tracey

    • Hi Tracey. I’m backed up on all of my email accts. A lot of folks respond to my blog posts via FB comments, FB inbox, Twitter, email, and calls. The best way for me to keep up with ‘blog post’ replies is if they are all in one place – on the blog hahaha I didn’t see your email, but, I do thank you so much for your prayers. I was doing better, but, within the past few days, my pain has increased on a daily basis. In fact, I didn’t sleep too well, last night and had to take my pain medication (which I was desperately was trying not to do) for the first time since I was released from the hospital 2 weeks ago; however, I’m hanging in there and have faith that this condition is temporary. GOD is good and everything is in his hands. 🙂

      • You’re welcome, Siawn. I don’t know why i sent the email instead, probably because I was rambling. LOL!

        I am so sorry to hear that the pain has increased, I am one that tries to avoid pain medication too so I know exactly how you feel about that. I really hope today is a better day and each day you’ll continue to feel better from now on.

        I have this book that is like my ‘health bible’ that approaches health issues from a nutritional perspective. I looked up pneumonia and it lists quite a few suggestions but what stuck out to me was Vitamins A, B and C. It says that Vitamin A deficiency increases susceptibility to respiratory infections, which can lead to pneumonia. I had my Vitamin A tested last month and I am deficient. I thought I might be low because I have had a lot of changes in my skin and Vitamin A is important for the skin. I am now taking 25,000 – 75,000 IU a day to bring it back up – so it is a real concern. I am still baffled at why doctors don’t check the major vitamin levels for deficiencies during exams. So, it may be worth it to start taking some or getting them tested. I’d recommend testing Vitamin D as well if you never have. So many studies are showing how critical Vitamin D is to health and that many people are deficient and don’t know it, I was very deficient the 1st time I was tested.

        I don’t mean to overwhelm you with info but I am hoping this will be helpful to get you on the road to complete recovery. 🙂

        • Thanks so much for the information on the vitamins. Coincidentally, I went back to the hospital yesterday (after the pain got too much for me). After being there all day, and having 50 million tests again, one of the things the Dr. did say was that my potassium was very low. I posted a detailed recap in my notes section on FB. I know that I am probably deficient in a lot of vitamins, since I don’t eat vegetables. I started starting a multi-vitamin when I was released from the hospital.

          • First, I’d like to apologize for misspelling your name. I think a troll jumped in and took that ‘l’ out because I know I typed it! LOL!

            I deactivated my FB page back in Feb but I went back on last night to read your post. I was so upset that you had to endure all of that, there is no excuse for that nurse’s behavior either. It’s very disturbing that someone like that is allowed to do that type of work.

            I am glad to hear you started the multi-vitamin. I know the doctor mentioned bananas, another good source of potassium is sweet potatoes. Oh, I don’t know if you saw my tweet the other day but taking a probiotic will also be helpful to combat the effects of the antibiotics since they also kill the good bacteria that your body needs. My book also mentions placing a heating pad or hot water bottle on your chest to help relieve pain.

            Please take it easy. I am continuing to keep you in prayer for a speedy recovery! God Bless! 🙂

            • Hey, Tracey! A lot has happened since you replied. I was back in the hospital again, yesterday. Prognosis as it reads on my discharge papers “Your CT scan did not show a blood clot in the lungs or an acute infection. Your pain may be due to pleurisy (inflammation of the ling of the lungs). You were referred to pulmonary clinic for follow up. So, thankfully, my pneumonia seems to be gone. I just have to see the specialist to see what the pain is stemming from. BTW, my last day of antibiotics was yesterday. My nurse is due to remove my PICC line tomorrow. Thank you, again for your prayers.

  5. Hello lovely lady! I am so glad that I took the time to check my email spam folder because I would have never known you were ill. I am sorry to hear of your sickness, but extremely elated that you are on the road to recovery. I have not visited the forum, Twitter etc, in quite some time, but still think of you, the Max family and of course Maxwell often. Please take care of yourself and God bless!

  6. That is Wonderful!! I’m so happy for you!
    So sorry you had to deal with such incompetence and pain, but I knew you’d
    Use it as a learning curve.
    Got to love your spirit!

    I hope Maxwell was one of those special messages, I know how special that would be. 😉
    Either way, I thank GOD for your recovery.
    Thank you for sharing.
    Glow

    • Thank you so much. It was definitely a challenging time, but as I was telling someone today, others go through a lot worse, so, I really have a lot to be thankful for.

      • Yes that’s exactly how I see it too. How I’ve been working through my illness .
        Keeps you centered and Happy.
        Btw, did Maxwell ever make “From this Moment” the song from peter pan ??? There’s a version that names him as the singer but I can’t find ANY THING ELSE about it. IF ITS HIM HE WAS EITHER inexperienced at the time or suffering from a cold but it’s really pretty, singer sounds very young though…
        Live&peace
        Glow

        • Yes. I cannot complain when I am on the road to recovery and others are still suffering with days, weeks, months and possibly years of discomfort and/ or pain ahead of them. (Re: Max – never heard of him associated with that song.)

  7. I’m so glad that you are on the road to a successful full recovery after this ordeal. This is a testimony of true friendship. Thanks for sharing & giving us an update on your condition.

    ((hugs))
    Chante

    • Thank you so much. I always knew she was a great friend and she has always been there for me, but, she truly went far beyond what I could have ever expected. Not a day goes by that I don’t flashback through this ordeal and realize how fortunate and blessed I was/am.

  8. I am so glad Millette would not take NO for an answer from you !!! Glad you are now on the road to recovery 🙂

    • Yes, indeed! That scenario keeps replaying in my mind. When I was diagnosed the Dr. said they got me to the hospital just in time. Also, the day after I was admitted, the nurses were shocked when I said I hadn’t gone to the bathroom in three days. They stated that I could go into kidney failure. If I was home or had gone to another hospital, I might have been misdiagnosed again and sent home…again, with pain medication and ended up with additional medical problems.

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