Saturday, October 23, 2010

Today is an Anniversary...

One year ago last April was the start of my downturn.  One year ago today, was the start of my demise.

I woke up on the elevator floor, with a commotion around me. The elevator was open, and held on the ground floor. People were on the phone, and I heard sirens. That was an ambulance that was coming for me.

I remember getting dressed for work, I had a can of soup in my pocket of a new red jacket. I was feeling so weak, as I hadn't kept any food down since April, and still had my period. I got to the elevator, but don't recall getting in it. Thankfully I did, and my neighbours said I crumpled right away like an accordian. 

I woke up with the neighbour that I suppose caught me from behind, and luckily I didn't hit my head on the floor. My landlord was on the phone, and not sure what happened, but I do recall the feeling as I was going down. It was somewhat gentle, and just a 'I'm shutting down' as there was no fight in me to do anything otherwise. 

The paramedics came, and spoke to me in the elevator before trying to move me. They asked me the standard questions, what year is this, what day, my name. He picked me up, and convinced me to just check my vitals in the bus. My blood sugar was perfect, my blood pressure was okay, but still I was trying to convince them to let me go to work.

My landlord asked what she could do, and she called work to say I wasn't going in, as much as I kept trying to say I was fine, and had to go.  She was such an angel. I was able to call my mom, who made it to me in under 10 minutes.  I think she called my husband, but I'm not entirely sure. I was able to text friends, that helped tell our circle of friends for me what was happening.

I accepted that I wouldn't go to work, but wanted to go upstairs, and just sleep. They hooked me up to an EKG. I put up such a fight they called their EMT supervisor of the entire city. I'm not sure what made me give in, but they let me pick the hospital to go to. 

I was put right through triage, and in the ICU right away, no waiting for a bed at all. Hooked up to wires, and sounds and beeping and IVs, and I was so damn tired. And cold. The best part about this hospital is the warm blankets that were there, somehow my husband knew (his family works at this hospital which is why I chose to go there) and kept giving me new blankets once they got to room temperature. 

I had some visitors, but I was still in just curtains. I eventually was given some cheese and juice, which I think stayed down.

I was scared. I tried to make jokes and remain alert, but I am not sure if I slept at all. I do feel bad still that I kept mom and the man away from work, and that I had to have someone work for me. 

I was finally released, not sure after how many hours. Not even sure when I made it back to work, if it was a few days or a week. 

I know I should have stopped working in August. 

One good thing, I am so grateful for is that I blacked out at home, I wasn't driving. I can't even fathom that horror if I was behind the wheel and if I hurt somebody. 

I've been haunted by this day ever since. I made it - an entire year later, and I am very ill, and much has changed, but it could have been so much worse. 

I am thankful for the kindness of strangers, and I can't imagine if I blacked out inside the apartment, or in the hallway, where I was alone. Not sure what could have happened if someone wasn't there right away.

One year ago today, was the start of my demise. I continued to get much worse.

One year later, I am still here. 

It is still lupus awareness month, please help to get the word out. Thank you.



  1. You are still here because, although your body is weak, YOU are strong. Keep fighting the good fight and, when you can't, we will pick up the battle axe for you. HUGS!

  2. I am at lost of what to write here except to send some electronic "hugs" through to you.

    Thanks for sharing your experience.

  3. Ditto on the above comment. Rhian you are a unique soul with a lot to offer.

  4. Rhian,

    That must have been a very scary experience. I'm glad you made it to the elevator so that people were able to call for help.