Monday February 20th, began as a beautiful day. We picked flowers (weeds) from the backyard and made patterns with them on the deck. The sunshine felt magnificent and the morning a dream.
By the afternoon, I started having pain that I was familiar with from mastitis, a no-fun breast infection from nursing. I had experienced it a few times before, and I knew it could go away on its own with nursing. But, I already had a doctor appointment set up for the following morning, so I could get it checked out then!
As the day went on, I steadily became worse. By bedtime, I was struggling to walk without falling, my body was shaking, my head pounded when I tried to stand, and my whole body felt like I'd been hit by a bus.
I went to bed, glad that I'd be seeing the doctor soon. In the morning, I was much worse and unable to stand without falling from the dizziness and head pounding. I got to the doctors and wasn't even able to understand the paperwork I needed to fill out.
I told the doctor what was going on and she confirmed mastitis and did a prompt ekg because my heart rate was really high and I was struggling to breathe. The ekg came back abnormal, and she also did a blood test to look for underlying problems.
I started antibiotics immediately and began improving. I had no idea just how much improving I'd need to do over the next few days, it's still a messy blur.
The infection from mastitis entered my blood stream causing sepsis. And sepsis is no joke. It's important for everyone to understand the signs of sepsis
I’ve been to many doctors and many hospitals and had many tests done, and will have more still. Yet, I want to share some of the amazing things that God has done through this brutal time.
The first miracle happened to be that I already had an appointment set up with my doctor the next morning. Had I decided to take a Tylenol and tough it out, I highly doubt that I would still be alive. Though my doctor missed the signs of sepsis, she did the right thing by prescribing my antibiotics which I started immediately and took every few hours.
Unfortunately, the antibiotics alone were not enough. My heart rate was out of control and I was having chest pain and trouble breathing so I went to the ER. I was also highly delusional, and unable to even explain that I had an infection because I didn’t know what was going on. The nurse asked when I had seen a doctor, and I said, “It doesn’t feel like a long time ago.” She asked how I got to the hospital and I told her I drove. She said, “Ma’am, I don’t think you should be driving…” and I said, “I only had to drive straight.”
Yeah, don’t drive if you think you have sepsis.
I was stuck in a waiting room for two hours (even with an abnormal EKG and signs of a heart attack). I was waiting with all the other super sick people, and an older man was wheeled in and parked across from me.
He looked over and said, “I’m so glad you have your hair in a ponytail, it looks so sexy like that!”
I was absolutely appalled. Really, what do you say to that… thanks?
I just looked away…
But he kept talking.
“I’m sorry that I keep staring, it’s my medication…” he said.
I tried to politely grin.
Luckily, they called me back to do some more tests. On the way to have chest x-rays done, it was clear that I was unable to successfully walk, so the nurse got me in a wheel chair. I was feeling worse by the moment.
After my X-rays, there were still no available beds, so the nurse wheeled me out to the waiting room and parked me right next to my older friend. I knew if I tried to tell her he was sexually harassing me, she would move me to another ward of the hospital, and I wouldn’t be home for dinner. So I just tried to watch t.v., only my brain couldn’t actually understand what I was looking at.
As soon as the man noticed me, he jumped out of his wheelchair to come and talk.
We exchanged ER pleasantries, “What they got you in here for…”and the like.
And then, he started to share about how he had wanted to kill himself. He had mentioned that to the nurse and gone through months of inpatient treatment.
At that moment, the door opened for me to share God’s love with him, and I got to explain that God has a special purpose for each of his days. He told me he had done some really bad things, but I got to explain how we all have, but Jesus took the punishment for sin for us all.
The nurse came and got me before I was finished, but I was so thankful for an awkward moment that had turned into a meaningful moment. Even through chaos, sickness, and disease, God’s victory is always present… we just need to know where to look!
I so appreciate all of your prayers, and know that I would not be here without God saving me multiple times. I’ll write more about that as I process it. I’m so thankful to still be here, and be celebrating my sons 5th birthday in a few days. I really wasn’t sure I’d make it. Again, thank you for all your prayers!
Is a wife, mother of four, author of Re:Birth, and lover of afternoon naps.