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8/21/08
My Quirky Kidney

Where have I been, you ask? Well, funny story...
It also started a couple of weeks ago really, when I would wake up and my left side/back area would be all stiff and painful. And I thought that it was just because I had slept on it the wrong way, or tweaked it playing softball, or because things just get stiff and creaky when you hit the ripe old age of 28. So I popped a couple of Advil, iced it down, and otherwise ignored it.

Then last Thursday, I was sitting at work in my not-so-ergonomically-designed office chair, and my side was just absolutely killing me. I mean, can't even ignore it anymore killing me. Any sane person would have gone to the doctor, but I, in my anti-doctor wisdom, made an appointment to have a massage instead. And that took the pain away...for about 30 minutes. So I went home and iced it and told myself that if it still hurt the next day, I'd go to the doctor.

Except that the next day when I woke up, I was fine. A little Advil, a little ice compress, and sleeping with my knees on a pillow did the trick. Self-congratulatory back pat for not rushing off to get medical help for every little passing twinge. As a matter of fact, I forgot all about the pain.

Until Tuesday.

Tuesday I woke up, and there was the pain again! Only this time it was worse! A lot worse! And it wasn't going away with ice and Advil either. So I did what every smart person would do and made an appointment to see a doctor. HAHA! Not really! I went to work instead. (Foolish but dedicated, that's me!) Anyway, I lasted until about 4:00, when the pain had beads of sweat popping out on my forehead. FINALLY I called a doctor.

There's a walk-in clinic not too far from work, and they told me to come on. So I went, but by the time I got there at 4:30, they told me that due to the complexity of my pain, they wouldn't be able to treat me in half an hour (they closed at 5). They wanted me to come back the next morning, but by this time, I knew that this was not just your run-of-the-mill back pain...this was something serious. So I called Tony and he took me to the ER.

At first, everyone was thinking kidney stones. They doped me up and did a CT scan to see exactly what was what. The good news: I don't have a kidney stone. The bad news: I have a urinary tract infection that is so bad, it has gotten into my kidney. The weird news: I only have one.

That's right. The CT scan revealed that I only have one kidney. Who knew? All this time, I would have thought two, but according to the doctor, I'm just one of those rare people who was born with only one. (I wonder what is in the missing kidney's place? Maybe all those singles socks that the dryer eats, or lost buttons). 28 years, and I never knew I was down a kidney. Take me off of your donor lists- this kidney is spoken for. The upside, said the doctor, is that my one kidney is a super kidney, because it is doing the job of two kidneys. (At least the organs that bothered to show up are over-achievers). Of course, the down side to the one kidney thing is that having a urinary tract infection in it becomes much more serious.

They have put me on some heavy duty meds. I mean, heavy duty atomic bomb meds. And they make me so nauseated, which is not fun. And they make me twitchy, which is doubly not fun, especially when nauseated. But they also kill my UTI, so what can I do? I have to protect my super-kidney...it's all I've got.

I do think Mom and Dad have some explaining to do, because I definitely got the short end of the inner organs stick here. Someone's chromosomes were definitely slacking. (Of course, what I lack in kidney, I definitely make up for in wit and charm and brains, right?)

I can say that I've definitely learned a lesson. Here I only had one kidney, and I had foolishly ignored the warning pain that there was something wrong with it. If I had gone to the doctor sooner, we could have caught the UTI before it got this bad. And I wouldn't have to be taking these pills that make me barf-ish. And my super kidney would still be super.

Moral of the story: Skip work. Go to doctor.

Your super organs will thank you.

5 comments:

Jean said...

Wow! I probably would have been the same way. It's just so hard to miss work, when you have to take off for the kids for their ailments there's never anytime to take off for your own.
Hope you get to feeling better soon.

Bluestocking said...

wow only one kidney! That's interesting. I hope you feel better soon.

Melanie said...

Hope you feel better soon! And what a neat interesting fact about yourself to find you only have one kidney!

Anonymous said...

Okay, after receiving the SHOCKING news that Quirky did something to a perfectly good kidney (they assured me at her birth she was perfect in every way-is it too late to get a refund???) the research has indicated MY side of the family has all their kidneys, lungs, spleens, etc. That is why we are so thick in the middle. We may have under-achieving thyroids and over-achieving uteri but we definately have all the major organs. I even have a spare lumbar vertebra.

Therefore, this quirk of the Quirk's missing kidney must be because of her father's side of the family! I knew it! I knew it!

Lucky for the Quirk's dad that he is just about perfect in every other way! Otherwise. . .

MotherQuirk

Reluctant Housewife said...

I'm a little behind on my quirky reading... I hope you and your super kidney are feeling better!