This topic contains 10 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Brittany Foster 2 months, 1 week ago.

  • Author
    Posts
  • #18921
     Brittany Foster 
    Keymaster

    I was in the hospital this past week getting my A/V fistula repaired in my arm. I ended up staying longer than expected because I was admitted onto the GI floor and ended up needing a replacement J tube (tube that allows me to get nutrition right into my intestines). I needed a bigger one and ended up having to get general anesthesia due to my breathing. This was a surprise for me because I thought that I was only getting sedation for the procedure. Waking up after general anesthesia and knowing that I ended up needing to be intubated really threw me mental health for a loop. I felt anxious, on edge, and very shaky in the hospital. Now that I am out and back home, I still am experiencing a lot of this nervous and built up energy.

    How long does it usually take for the post hospital jitters to go away for you? Usually something that helps me with these feelings is: staying distracted, getting out of the house, and making “day dates” with friends. The more I can do to keep my mind focused on better things. The quicker I seem to emotionally heal. What helps you through these times?

  • #18928
     Colleen Steele 
    Keymaster

    Speaking as a caregiver, the moment I get home from a hospital stay exhaustion suddenly hits me like a ton of bricks. I wish I could say I manage to stay busy but in reality, I take a long, hot bath then sleep for a day. I think it’s the mental exhaustion that catches up to me once I get home.

    I know my son catches up on sleep too but his favorite distraction is on-line games. It’s his favorite escape from reality.

    • #18945
       Brittany Foster 
      Keymaster

      I know a lot of people who love online games or video games especially during times of stress. I got lost playing old school games like Mario Kart and Crash when I was recovering after my heart surgery. It really served a purpose with a good distraction.

      I can only imagine the mental exhaustion from the caregivers too. I saw my mom sleep on two chairs pushed close together and I know she must be feeling the stress in her body from that! I give parents so much credit !

  • #18934
     Valerie 
    Participant

    Brittany, what you’ve been through is really painful. The whole chain of problems, you solve one and there is another. I’m very, very sorry for you. I can’t imagine how you’re going through all this, because I hate hospitals so much. I don’t have to stay in the hospital, but I still have to make periodic visits to the doctor. Every time it’s still hard, especially if I have to go to another city. Any visit to the doctor then brings fatigue, the road is also exhausting. I try to deal with this in the simplest way possible. For example, in another city after a visit to the doctor I go to a cafe for delicious food, or for a walk in the Park, or hang out for an hour in a bookstore (in my city the most miserable bookstore). A walk or shopping distracts from the previous few hours at the clinic. And when I get home, the remaining strength can be spent on some familiar household chores or watching a comedy series, which also helps to distract.

    • #18946
       Brittany Foster 
      Keymaster

      Thank you for the advice Valerie and for sharing what helps you during those times of stress. It is always good to have something to look forward to after appointments or visits. I try to give myself something “small” to look forward to when I get out of hospitals. Even if that means just taking a trip to my favorite ice cream place on the ride home. Sometimes it really is the little things that make a huge difference !

  • #18935
     Carol Volckmann 
    Participant

    Hi Britney, my heart breaks for you – you continue have to endure so much and so much of the time it is going through additional procedures you were not expecting. That’s the kind of thing that always throws me really off balance – I seem to be ready for what is to happen and feel I can control going through it all, tben the curve ball and it sets me on edge. After it is all over, I try and do mindless things even doing cross word puzzels, solitair – something that puts my head in what I call stall mode. If I combine this with reading, taking a long hot shower (can’t take a bath because of my IV central line), taking our golden retriever out for a walk or even just giving him a brushing – all of these help me to focus again on the good things and forge ahead. I wish you well and again want to thank you for your sharing- THEY help so much! Lots of hugs,
    Carol

    • #18947
       Brittany Foster 
      Keymaster

      Carol,
      I know exactly what you mean by trying to put your mind in “stall mode” . Getting out of the hospital it feels like my brain just doesn’t have room for other things. Sometimes my concentration and focus really feel off. I usually enjoy reading but haven’t been able to read much since my surgery. It’s as if my mind is in a completely different place and just on auto pilot almost all the time. I have talked with my doctors about this and even tried a few anxiety meds that didn’t end up helping matters with my GI system. I ended up getting really nauseous from the two that I tried and didn’t have much luck!

      • #18953
         Colleen Steele 
        Keymaster

        Carol and Brittany, as a caregiver I am familiar with the curve ball effect too. I use to be a great multi-tasker and now, I’m luck if I can read a book without having to go back and re-read the page because my mind wandered. I think it’s because of all the hospital stays and medical emergencies where I had to stay focused on one thing, my son’s health. I kind of touched a little on this topic in my recent column. I’ve self-diagnosed myself with PTSD.

        I like Carol’s suggestions. I often do cross words too and walking the dog…that’s a great way to relax the mind. This sounds crazy but Brittany, have you ever tried coloring books? They have a big selection now for grown ups and I don’t know, there is something so relaxing about coloring…lol, or paint by number, that’s another good one.

      • #18974
         Brittany Foster 
        Keymaster

        Hey Colleen,
        I LOVE coloring books and do a lot of coloring with my great colored pencil and gel pen collection. I have so many coloring books that many of my friends gave me while in the hospital as a gift and they are such a life saver! I would love to try a good paint by number piece. I heard those were a good stress relief too. Just something that can take my mind off of things and allow me to clear my head would be great. I have done a lot of wine and paint nights and always have the best time ! Have you ever been to one of those ?

  • #18969
     Jen Cueva 
    Participant

    Brittany, you’re an amazingly strong woman! I admire your strength and vulnerability. I know for myself, it seems each hospital stay, it takes me longer to regain my mental clarity. I’m not going through the surgeries like you’ve been going through, just simple procedures in comparison. I agree with the others as far as needed extra time for catching up on sleep is important. Also, I try to get back to my usual routine. But, I also must remember to take it slow and be gentle with myself.

    I think you offer us all these great tips and reminders, in our times of need. Please remember to be just as patient, if not more than you are with us all.

    I enjoy reading, music, helping others, cooking, and taking naps, and bubble baths, lol ( just a few )

    Take the time you need. Focus on your positives each day. Even if it’s just eating noodles, sleeping in your own bed, or a small amount of exercise. You have been through more than I’ve been through in all my years living with PH. You got this, too!

    • #18975
       Brittany Foster 
      Keymaster

      Thank you so much for all your continued encouragement, Jen! It really means a lot to know that I have encouraged others to practice self care and compassion too. It is easier said than done for myself but I give myself the credit for trying, especially on the days where it seems easier to ignore my health troubles in hopes of just feeling normal for a little. I’m sure you can understand that feeling too. I love your suggestions and there is so much strength gained in focusing on the smaller achievements through the day. They really do add up to feel like “bigger” achievements! Each day I definitely get a little stronger.

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.

Copyright © 2017-2019 All rights reserved.

©2019 KLEO Template a premium and multipurpose theme from Seventh Queen

CONTACT US

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Sending
or

Log in with your credentials

or    

Forgot your details?

or

Create Account