My Return to Real Life

Sorry it's been so long. Things just got so depressing that I couldn't stand writing another post that said "So, I'm still in the hospital...", so I just decided not to say anything.

Real quick, here's the rundown of the last seven months. I went to the ER with abdominal pain, fever, and unexplained shortness of breath on June 19th. I was admitted to The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania where my aspiration pneumonia continued to worsen for another two weeks before my lungs failed and I was intubated. I was intubated for a month while the doctors tried to keep me on this side of deaths door. I had acute respiratory distress syndrome and then as that was clearing up I developed adrenal insufficiency syndrome, which was another difficult fight. After I was transferred out of the ICU, I developed methhemoglobinemia as a side effect of one of the drugs I was on and it kept me there even longer.

I was transferred to a phical rehab because I had muscle wasting and neuropathy in my lower limbs. For two weeks I worked hard to get walking again, but then had another episode of aspiration pneumonia that landed me in Einstein's ICU for two weeks and then I was moved to the ICU at Thomas Jefferson University. This was the beginning of October. I spent October and November getting new aspiration pneumonias and recovering from them. In December they finally decided to do something more permanent to make me better. They surgically placed a combination G/J tube into my stomach and jejunum. The G tube drains all of the acid and food out of my stomach so that I can't aspirate and the J tube delivers daily tube feedings lower down into my digestive tract so that I still get the nutrition I need. After recovering from the surgery for a few weeks I actually got to come home. December 18, I was released and came home to my mom's house. I've been working hard with a physical therapist that comes to the house two times a week and now I'm walking with a walker and can even climb the steps now, though it still wears me out pretty badly.

While recovering I started loom knitting hats and I've turned my interest in it into a charity, knitting hats for the homeless. You should check it out.

Knit for the Needy

Well that's life right now, hopefully I won't have to tell that story again anytime soon. I'll write again soon, I've got plenty to say, but for now I'm going to be off.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, Rachel, I'm so sorry! I can't believe everything you've gone through the last several months, but it's so good to hear from you!! I have been wondering how you've been. I really hope things will be better for you now!! You're in my prayers!