?`s and ANNEswers

Ten minutes to write. Less time to read.


It came on suddenly as I practiced piano. One minute I’m pounding through “Great Barrier Reef,” and the next my stomach is pounding in its own right. The former piece is about the Great Reef in Australia in all its glory; the latter had nothing glorious about it.

Only an intense desire to visit the bathroom. And then again. And again.

When my stomach is upset, I’ve found that curling into a fetal ball and trying to sleep often helps, especially if it’s something I ate that didn’t agree with me. So I did that for six hours but with little relief. You can gauge how miserable I felt, because the question always is, “Does the insertion of an IV in my arm in the emergency room cause more anxiety than the pain I feel?” Most times, the pain wins.

But by late afternoon, I threw in the towel. Doubled over in evident misery, I was greeted promptly at the ER by someone who put me in a wheelchair and pushed me past others waiting their turns. Earl parked the car and came to console me.

The next four hours included a myriad of tests as well as something to dull the pain. Actually it took more than one something administered through an IV, but eventually relief begrudgingly arrived. As did a diagnosis. I have a kidney stone. Who knew that something only 3 mm in size could cause such agony?

After signing various forms and instructions, I was sent home to await the stone’s passing. (Given its relatively small size in the world of kidney stones, this is the first course of action.)

Needless to say, I was also sent home with good pain meds. Which are making me  v e r y   s l e e e e e p y now. Back to the fetal ball position.

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