Monday at noon my blood sugars went really low. I was down to 51. I was shaking, out-of-control, cold and hot and sweating. Everything "felt" wrong. And I was scared. I called my surgeon and talked to one of the nurses assistants named Kelly. She told me to eat TONS of jello and call her back in 1/2 an hour. I did. And I was still low. So for the next 5 hours my mother worried, Joanne fretted, and I kept suffering severe lows without any sign of regulation. Finally, Kelly told me to try one tsp. sugar with a jello shot. That worked for about 15 minutes and then shot my blood surgars even lower. She had me try that twice. Finallyat about 8 p.m., I was told to go to bed and ignore the situation while my sugars were at 59. Still not high enough but as high as they had been all day. That seemed so odd, but I followed orders.
I woke up Tuesday morning with low blood sugars again. I ate some jello. But instead of calling the office again, Joanne lent us her white Durango so mom and I could go to a post-operation class and eat my first meal. The class was really good. I learned alot. But before lunch my blood sugars were way low (45). The dietician said to check after lunch. (In really cool news: I enjoyed my first meal of 1 Tbsp. cottage cheese and 1/2 of a hard boiled egg.) After lunch I was as low as I'd ever been and I was immediately admitted to the hospital again. (Luckily, the post-op class was right on the 5th floor of the hospital... I only had to move two doors down to my "new" hospital room of 5407.)
Mom and I settled down in the room for a long night which turned into a longer night as they IVed me sugars, monitored my blood sugar levels, and used me as a common pin cussion every hour on the hour. They also fed me my second meal of fish and cottage cheese. (Can you tell that I LOVE cottage cheese? Well, I do. It's been my favorite since I was a very little girl.)
Dr. Blackstone and Melissa came to see us after their hospital operations. They explained what was happening to me with my blood sugars. Normally when sugars go low, eating or ingesting some kind of sugar will help raise the levels. But after gastric-by-pass surgery, your stomach doesn't digest the sugar because of it's size and missing the first 1/3 of your intestines, so the sugar goes stright into your blood. Insulin instantly kicks in and sends your sugars and extra potassium into your cells, causing a low. Eating sugar is the absolute WRONG thing to do after GBS. Instead, I should have eaten protein... and waited. I shouldn't have panicked and eaten sugar.
They assured me that their education for diabetic patients would change because of me. It would be better. And they would review the material they sent home too. I guess I was the first one in ten years to have reacted this way. Joanne and Aunt Val said that I was special. :-)
Mom and I settled down for sleep at the usual hospital bed-time of midnight. Mom wasn't comfortable in the reclining chair so she decided to sleep on a small bench built into the wall. There wasn't much room (only about 2 feet across) but it was long enough. Nothing else exciting happened until (duh duh duh) mom fell at 5:00 a.m. off of her make-shift bed. She landed on her shoulders and instantly began crying. I begged her to let me call the nurse... but she wouldn't let me. After about 10 minutes, I told her to call dad and see what he wanted her to do. He told her to let me call the nurse.
Jodie, one of my favorite nurse aides, came as I called. I told her my mother fell. She said, "Oh! That's who fell!" I guess both patients on either side of my room had called the nurse reporting that someone had fallen. They had looked in and seen that I was still in my bed so they had continued looking for the "ghost" faller. The mystery had been solved. Mom was taken to the ER. I was allowed to sleep for another 30 minutes. It was extremely hard to sleep worrying about my mom....
By now, my sugars were high. I was ranging in the 180s. Which is better than low. They told me I would get to go home today after my surgeon released me. I waited for Dr. Blackstone, as well as my mom....
Mom came back from the Emergency Room about 9:00 a.m. She had a hilarious story to tell. After having xrays and a cat-scan, she was pronounced OK. They said she would be sore for a few days and to take Ibuprofin. Then they put her into a room to wait until they could discharge her. She waited for over an hour. By then she was worried about me. She was also cold and she needed to use the restroom. So she came up with a plan. There was only one blue piece of paper in her room with her name on it. So she got a pen from her purse and wrote a little note. It said: "Hi!
The rest of Wednesay was spent waiting to go home. We waited. We waited. And we waited. Finally we were allowed to go home at 5:30 p.m. I was worn out. I really wanted to return my friend's car. And I wanted some normallacy. I was grouchy and tired and for the first time a bit depressed about the surgery. (Why? Because I learned that I won't be able to go "home" to Kentucky for 6 weeks... and I really miss my daughters and husband!)