If, by chance, you are a paranoid freak such as myself, and think three days of semi-nausea is a surefire sign of an unplanned pregnancy, know that all you have to do is develop kidney stone symptoms and get yourself to the ER where a pregnancy test will be performed before you get a CT scan.
I’m not pregnant.
But I felt like I was in labor this past Sunday.
I sent my husband and the eldest child off to church while I stuck around at home to keep the contagious eye infection of my baby away from others, and to rest from the nausea I was terrified was morning sickness. Not 15 minutes after the husband left, I started feeling pain in my lower left back and abdomen. Within seconds I was all over WebMD, but wasn’t finding any helpful information.
The pain started getting so bad that the only way to deal with it was to pace the hall and breathe deeply. I sent a text to my husband, telling him he should probably come home. Knowing I am only prone to dramatics in speech, and that I would never ever tell him to come get me unless I was at death’s door, he raced home to find me screaming and crying.
My husband started getting things ready so we could go to the ER, but I really didn’t want to waste the day at the hospital if I was only experiencing bad cramps or some other such foolish thing.
One scream later, however, and we were out the door. I begged Ryan to take me to Instacare before we resorted to the ER, so we pulled up to our closest Instacare, only to discover the opening nurse had left her keys at home, and the facility was closed.
So I threw up in their parking lot, and we headed to the hospital. Take that, closed Instacare!
Halfway there, I thought I was feeling fine again. “Maybe all I needed to do was throw up,” I told Ryan. “Let’s just go home.” But then, at the intersection to the hospital, I was ready to throw my body under passing cars, just to be freed from the pain. So my smart husband chose to turn into the hospital instead of heading home.
Once checked in and heavily dosed on morphine, I was feeling fine — and foolish for being there. The doctors and nurses kept mentioning pregnancy, and other such things related to the topic, so I started to worry I was housing a vampire baby. Turns out, they just wanted to rule out a pregnancy before they gave me a CT scan. That makes a lot of sense now, but when one is under the influence of pain, nausea and drugs, the mind can jump to unrealistic conclusions.
The CT scan revealed a 3 mm kidney stone. When they showed me the print-out of my insides, I swear the little stone winked at me.
They gave me lots of drugs and sent me home with the parting words that were somehow supposed to make me feel better: “Hey, this is as bad as labor, but at least you won’t have to pay for its college tuition.” Nice one, Doc. Nice one. My mind invented all sorts of tortuous devices to be used on the snarky little doctor once I found myself at home, screaming and crying yet again from pain.
I believe the little stone has since left my body, as I am now feeling all kinds of better. As cheesy as it sounds, through this whole experience, I found a lot of sweet little mercies — Friends and neighbors stepped in with meals and childcare, countless people told me they were praying for me, and my husband happily took on all my responsibilities for the last couple days while I existed in a sleep-throw up-nurse the baby pattern of hell.
I’m almost ready to look back at this experience and laugh. Almost.