our heroine, Spring, was still reeling from the diagnosis of a blood clot in her arm and a surprise four-day stay at the hospital.
Today we watch her visit her doctor 2.5 days post-hospital, during which her doctor notes the following:
--the upper arm muscle ache (where the clot is) has expanded to include her entire shoulder, nearly to the collar bone
--the swollen vein at the inside of her elbow is still swollen and prevents full arm extension
--the large swollen vein on the side of her arm almost at her wrist has become much bigger and the slightest touch sends excruciating pain through her arm
--there is a tiny, bead-sized lump just at her wrist of the back of her arm that can't be seen, but which is impeding her ability to manipulate her wrist
--there is a huge lump, starting at the inside elbow and moving halfway down her arm toward her wrist, on her OTHER ARM
Yes, I said the other arm -- the one that housed the Heparin IV drip while she was in the hospital. Did you know that it is more common to get a clot from a Heparin drip than from an injection? And that they are more serious than other clots?
The doc wasn't ready to concede that this may be another clot, not when the swelling just started this morning. But it is a distinct possibility.
The doc gave her a stern look when she admitted, upon questioning, that she'd gone back to work the day after leaving the hospital. Well, the doc hadn't said not to. And what the fuck was she supposed to do, anyway? She'd already missed two days of work, and she had to get all her work done before leaving in a few weeks.
On the bright side, the doc acknowledged the pain she must be in and prescribed some wonderful, wonderful percoset. And ordered her to get another blood draw first thing in the morning. Another fucking needle stick.
She took her prescription to the local walgreens, only to be told that her doc hadn't included the strength of the dose in her prescription. Motherfucker, she thought. Now she had to drive back to the doc and have her fix that, then go back to walgreens again. She was clearly just about at her limit, as she drove back to the doc's.
Tears began to fill her eyes, and she blinked them back quickly -- she was in public, after all. And they sat there, unshed, closing her throat. She couldn't have spoken if she'd wanted to.
On the drive to the doc's, she let her mind wander in an attempt to ignore the pain. She was tired of being strong for the rugrat, for her job. Putting on a smile through the pain and pretending she was fine.
What she wanted...what she really wanted...was to be greeted at home by a wonderful man who cared about her. To be guided to bed, where she could slide in between clean, smooth sheets. To lie there and shed a tear or two, while he held her. For him to wrap the heating pads gently, tenderly, around the worst of her lumpy veins to alleviate some of the swelling. To feel him stroke her hair and whisper in her ear 'it will be just fine.' And for it to be just fine. Miraculously fine.
And then she was abruptly slammed out of her fantasy as she pushed the lever to put the car into 'park' and sucked her breath in through her teeth against the waves of pain that one simple act forced through her arm.
Back to reality. To the pain. She mentally shook herself, and remembered that life goes on. And so must she.
She arrived home at 9 that evening, looking very much forward to the percoset.
Stayed tuned for the next episode of 'how the blood clots.' Coming soon to a blog near you.