Friday morning on March 16th, I woke up and felt nauseated. ‘Crap,’ I thought to myself. ‘I don’t want the flu!’ We didn’t have any normal saltine crackers so I took a couple of Bunger’s Garden Ritz crackers and started to munch on them. Let me tell you now before you try it yourself, they don’t work so don’t even try to eat them when nauseated. Since they made me feel worse, I was only able to choke down one.

Bunger saw that I wasn’t feeling well and mentioned that I should maybe call my mom. I blew him off figuring that I had the flu and nothing more. Soon my chest started to hurt. The only other time I had experienced this pain was when I was living with Mel last year. With that, I ended up going to the doctors, having tons of tests done, only to have them say nothing was really wrong.

But most of all I remember the excruciating pain. The pain was so severe that it made breathing, an autonomic function, difficult to do. And I could tell this was the same pain.

Knowing that it was Friday and that the doctor’s offices would be at full capacity, I called my mom and told her to take me to the ER.

We arrived at Sanford ER around 9:00. I was attended to right away since the ER was pretty deserted (Note: If you need to go to the ER, go around hours when businesses are just opening). The staff was very nice; although it could have been because I was wearing my Sanford employee jacket and was essentially “one of them.” They performed every test you could think of (x-rays, blood work, etc.).

The testing went much easier this time since I knew which tests they would perform. I wasn’t scared and sobbing like last time. And I was proud of myself that I didn’t cry when they put the IV in me. Oh how I despise when they have to do that.

Like the previous time, everything came back ok and the tests showed nothing was out of place, inflamed, etc. It was now time for the magical medications to help make me pain free. I was given a shot of Morphine but it had little effect on me. I was also then given two Percocet and a Toradol shot which finally brought down the pain level. The doctor gave me an order to rest and no exerting myself. I was so relieved that I didn’t have to work that weekend.

Once I was home I posted my adventure on Facebook. My friend Britney, who lives in a different state and also has Lupus, wrote “It’s the damn Lupus. I used to get BAD cramps in my legs and I couldn’t move them. Then other times I would get chest pains as well and I couldn’t breathe. My Rheum gave me Toradol. I hope you’re ok! Let me know if I can do anything!”

I went to her page and asked her if Lupus could do that and that my symptoms sounded a lot like hers. I wrote, ‘It suddenly comes on & you need to do something stat because it makes it hard to breathe. I don’t know if Toradol will work for me. First they gave me morphine & that didn’t work. Then they gave me Toradol shot plus two Percocet pills & that finally started to ease it. Thanks for letting me know. I figured it had to be the Lupus or Fibro.’ Even with having the disease for 12 years, I am still learning more about it.

She responded and said, ‘Yep! I had my share of ER and Urgent Care visits. It sucks! Whatever works for you, stick with it. And make sure your primary stays in the loop with everything, especially your ER trips. Also, make sure you document and make sure it’s in your chart what works for you and what you have already tried that doesn’t work. Trust me; it will save you future headaches with the system! Good luck dear and keep me posted!’

The experience had me thinking that I don’t know what I would do without my mom.  It scares me to think of how it would be without her (I know it’s a concern of hers too). I knew there was no way I could drive myself and don’t have the money to pay for an ambulance bill. Who will help take care of me? Who will be my rock? I hope I eventually find someone that would want to help take care of me when it’s needed and everything works out in the end.




*Special thanks to Isbor for letting me use picture