After receiving my diagnosis, I tried to remain positive and enjoy the Christmas season as much as I could. But I was in pain. A LOT OF PAIN.
By Christmas Eve I was really shaking, pretty much constantly. Looking back I guess I should have tried to do something earlier, but I honestly didn’t think there was anything to be done. When I would get dressed I would cry out and wince in pain just putting my underwear on. Annnnnnnny slight movement was not a pleasurable experience. I wasn’t sleeping. I couldn’t sleep. I’d sleep off and on, woken up by a shooting pain because I accidentally moved or my body twitched setting off the shooting pains.
Sucking it up I got dressed for Christmas Eve – trying to pick the easiest clothes to get on – and headed to my boyfriend’s family’s celebration. It’s always such a great time when I’m with them… But this time I wasn’t enjoying myself at all. Between all the questions on how I’m doing and when I’ll drop the crutches, I mentally kept giving myself a pep talk. By the time Brad and I made it to Christmas Eve mass I was in immense pain. I started shaking my leg more and more and Brad could tell i was really hurting. After Christmas Eve mass I went home and prayed that I’d at least be able to enjoy a little bit of my Christmas Day.
Christmas Day I ‘woke up’ (If you could even call what I did sleep) and was shaking uncontrollably. My knee seemed to keep growing in size, the coloring was completely off and my knee seemed all blotchy. My parents were extremely concerned and kept asking me if I wanted to go to the hospital. We were opening presents and stockings… It was Christmas! My favorite day of the year! I wasn’t going to the hospital… No. We were celebrating like we always do.
After an hour my Dad wasn’t taking my ‘no’ answer any more and said he was calling my ortho. I honestly felt horrible for having him call me on Christmas! He advised me to take double the dose of pain meds and if it didn’t go away there wasn’t much I could do except go to the emergency room.
Once we were done with our presents and breakfast I took 2 vikes and passed out. My Dad, Bro and Sis went to my Aunt and Uncles and my Mom stayed home with me. I actually got a few hours of passed out sleep. Waking up I was determined to at least celebrate part of Christmas. I cried putting my clothes on because my leg was so sensitive that even the touch of fabric was enough to put me over the edge… while pulling up my pants I realized that my knee was so swollen that I could barely get my jeans over it. :-/ I made it through a few hours out of the house and went home, took double the dose of pain meds again and passed out again for a few hours.
About 4 in the morning I woke up and was just in excruciating pain. On a scale of 1-10 this was a 15. I couldn’t stand it anymore. Through out the past few days my parents were trying to convince me to go to the hospital, but I didn’t want to give up celebrating Christmas. I had sucked up and dealt with the pain and made it to the day I loved. It was during that 4am breakdown that I finally realized I didn’t need to continue to suffer the pain and agreed to go to the hospital. I figured at the very least maybe they’d give me stronger meds and best case scenario they would possibly cut my leg off?? (I thought maybe I could get them to agree to the amputation.) We checked into the hospital at 6am and I didn’t check out until 5 days later.
I thought that I had experienced the most intense pain I could ever experience the night before causing me to agree to go to the hospital, but I was definitely wrong. The worst pain I’ve ever experience was having my knee, in it’s current situation (where even the slight touch of fabric sent me jumping), and having the ER doctor jam a huge ass needle in my knee to draw fluid to culture. My Dad stayed in the room to hold my hand and my Mom had to leave the room. My Mom said she could hear me scream down the hall and my Dad said he’ll never forget the look I made on my face. I know throughout this whole post you’re probably been thinking- oh the pain can’t be that bad, she must have a low tolerance of pain. I know you probably won’t believe me when I say this, but I have a very high tolerance of pain. After going through this experience I honestly think that when I have a baby I’ll be like ‘that was it? it’s already over with?’. I can’t even explain how much pain I was in. I hope I never have to experience it again and I surely hope that no one else ever has to experience it.
The hospital thought that maybe my knee was infected and started pumping me with antibiotics and the best damn pain medicine I’ve ever come in contact with. Delotid. Ahhh. I’ve never had a drug or alcohol problem, but after taking that drug and seeing the immediate relief I got from it I could definitely see how people develop addictions. Because the doctor was convinced that my knee was infected I was admitted to the hospital and put with all the ladies and gentlemen getting hip and knee replacements. I was the youngest by about 30 years.
That first day I was in the hospital I had x-rays done, blood tests and several doses of pain medicine. Best thing about being in the hospital was the exposure to new doctors, exposures to new tests that I hadn’t had before and the pain medicine 😉 haha! That night I was told not to eat anything because if my knee was infected a surgeon would need to go in tomorrow and clean it all out. It made me nervous getting another surgery so soon, but if that’s what I needed then I was going to trust them!
I went to bed that first night praying that I was in the right place and that someone could help me. Hey! At the very least I was finally getting some relief to get a few hours of shut eye!
Have you ever had pain so intense you couldn’t stop shaking? Luckily from this point on my pain started to decrease, but I wouldn’t wish that one anyone. Have a story you’d like to share? Head over to the forum and write it down.
I ended up spending a week in the hospital – Read the rest of the story here!
Wishing you a PAIN FREE day!