April 4, 2011

It was the Best of Times, It was the Worst of Times.......

I got married 5 days after graduating from Nursing School to Michael, my jr high and high school sweetheart. I was 22 and he was 23. We rushed home after just 3 days on our honeymoon. Michael's dad suddenly and without warning died at the age of 53 from a massive heart attack. We were devastated. To have such incredible happiness and such intense sadness in one week was almost surreal. Everything seemed to change in a moments time. The impact was life altering.
We soon bought our first home. A three story tenement house that needed six months of TLC before we could even move in. It was a lot of work, but we felt such accomplishment. Very soon after the rehab, I mysteriously "threw my back out". I could't move for one week. I went to see an orthopedic who took an x-Ray and a CT Scan. It showed 3 ruptured discs! How could this be? I was only 23 years old and never had an injury. The Doc diagnosed me with Ruptured Disc Syndrome. A syndrome because there was no known reason for it. I thought "oh great, another mystery disease"! I continued with the headaches and fatigue, and then added intermittent back pain to the mix. I couldn't pick up anything heavy which was hard because I was working as a R.N. I was as careful as I could be. But still had an occasional flare-up. I soon got pregnant with our first child at the age of 24. The pregnancy was tough with vomiting throughout the day and extreme back pain as I began to grow in girth. Tylenol just didn't cut it, but that was all I could take. So, I had no choice other than to deal with it until my Victoria was born.
I was unable to have an epidural because the ruptured discs where a problem. So, I had 12 hours of labor and a natural child birth made miserable by an IV of Pitocin(a medication that makes you cramp harder to speed up the labor). Never again would I let anyone put an IV of anything in my veins during a delivery! Anyway, I gave birth to a perfect but colicy baby girl. One I could not hold while standing. The pain in my back did not allow me to lift her as she grew. My mom would come over daily to help me, especially while doing errands. We had to buy our first of many vans so I wouldn't have to bend down in a car. I learned to adapt to my limitations and was blessed to have the help needed. One kid down. Two to go.