So, I survived NaNoWriMo and managed to reach the 50,000 word count as well as coming very close to finishing "What Comes After." I think I have a couple of resolution chapters yet to write before its a done deal, but the biggest part of it is done. I had hoped to use December to do finish it and to start the beta process--but I had gotten so far behind on work things, personal things and holiday things, I ended up being too busy running around catching up that I haven't written a word since NaNo. However, I have e-mailed sodakey and discussed how to start beta'ing and hopefully we'll get started on the first chapter soon. Once that happens, I'll talk to gaelicspirit about giving it a second look before posting, if she has the time, because I prefer two sets of eyes to just one when available. I've got enough chapter material to keep beta'ing and posting chapters for a good while once we get started.
However, I did manage to hit a snag in everything the last weekend in December (the weekend I received the lovely virtual gifts) when I woke up Saturday with severe pain in my back that wrapped around to my bladder. Yep, its another kidney stone...or stones. Because we really, really have no money right now (as in, wondering how to even buy food the next week or so), I didn't ask to go to the doctor or ER even though, deep down, I knew what was happening and knew it would not pass on its own. Been down this street often enough. So, I lived in denial, saying maybe it'll pass and taking my back up Vicodin while curled up on the couch tightly gripping daughter's brand new Hello Kitty comforter around me. By Monday, I was starting to feel really sick--as in, can't eat and feeling really bad and the pain was wearing me down. So I called my doctor's office and asked them for advice--they said I could wait until Wednesday for an appointment or go to the ER, she personally recommended ER. So,Tuesday morning, we headed to the ER in Springfield about an hour or so away, there was no point in messing with the local ER.
It took all day, but they finally got a CT scan done and told me it looked like I had two kidney stones, one 6mm and the other 7mm. The plan was to put me out and use a cystoscope to go up into the urinary tract and use a laser to break up the stones and to put in a stent to help the pieces pass. However, when the doc got in there, everything was in such a mess he couldn't see the stones well enough to proceed. He said visibility was so bad, he wasn't even sure if it was two stones next to each other or one really weird-shaped one (its a big ol' honker if it's just one). He said the kidney and ureter was swollen and inflamed and a bunch of gunk and blood came out when he pushed past the stone. He said I had come close to going septic like I did with the very first stone back in 2002. So, yeah, maybe living in denial wasn't my brightest idea ever. So, he placed the stent, put me on IV antibiotics and kept me overnight.
I'm still taking pill-form antibiotics and I have an appointment to go back on January 16th. He'll take x-rays at that time and, hopefully, be able to determine what to do next--the scope again or lithotripsy. Until then, I'm status quo. I do feel a little better than I did--my appetite is mostly back, I'm not as nauseous, dizzy and weak as I was and, of course, the super-intense (give me morphine now) pain has calmed to something manageable with hydrocodone variations. Blessed progress and I'll take what I can get.
Tomorrow, I'm going to try going back to work, a half day only. I'm really not looking forward to it at all. As I've said before, these stents hurt when you stand or walk. The doctors say some people tolerate them better than others, but everyone I've ever talked to that had one says the same thing as me--it hurts like heck! It feels like your bladder is pinching/cramping while someone simultaneously stabs it with a pencil and tries to pull it out toward gravity. It's a really weird sensation and sometimes it gets to the point where I literally cannot take another step even with the two kinds of pain medicine--so I'm really not looking forward to work.
But, then again, maybe getting out a little while will help me not feel so depressed...because I have moments of deep, heavy depression that just crushes in on me from time to time during the day. It's the suffocating kind and I hate it. Doesn't help that hubs is also deeply depressed as well...blah. Anyway, that's why I've not been around anywhere much since this all started--either because I've felt/hurt so bad or because I'm just so depressed I don't feel like doing anything. But there has been progress on the writing front, for those who are interested, and I promise I didn't mean to ignore anyone at any social media at any time. If I've already said all this, forgive me, my brain isn't in top form at the moment.
Anyway, hope everyone had a great New Year's Eve/Day and I really hope we all have a great New Year! *hugs to all*
P.S. If you're interested in medical stuff like me, this is what a ureteral stent looks like (about a foot long and somewhat like an IV tube):