Back and forth and up and down. Apparently the general vicinity of the pituitary gland is not something messed with lightly, and for the annoyance of all of this I can certainly see why.
They kept me in the hospital because my body said water wasn’t important enough to hold onto. They released me, finally, upon determining that I would at least probably not pass out on the way to and from the hotel when I came in for labs and follow-up appointments. They now find that my body doesn’t feel the need for salt. They actually predict it may swing back and forth like this a few times before it settles. In all honesty, I have no idea how people could be just that interested in various fluids that come out of the human body, but the analysis involved here has been an educational experience. I periodically have to go in for lab work while they get me into some sort of stable balance, which could take up to another week or longer, and even the professional lab technicians who spend all day drawing blood have had to stick me three times in one sitting just to find working veins. People have begun looking at my husband askance as they see the condition of my arms, what with a new bruise nearly every day. I’ve been in such a mood that they should really be more concerned about his welfare.
At least the deficiencies in hormones and various levels have been able to explain some of the interesting symptoms that, while not there while I had a tumor the size of an egg, now cause me to bump into walls and need to sit down after walking a few blocks. Hopefully that will improve in time; I really don’t need any more bumps.
What I have found, wandering around Walter Reed, is that for a hospital providing long term care for seriously wounded Soldiers the place isn’t as depressing as one would think. A friend of mine, who lost both his legs last January, met up with me a few days ago and I watched them make him a new leg as he explained that he intends to stay for a long time though he doesn’t really have to just because of the care he can get and the benefits, such as multiple legs for different activities. Most of the Soldiers seem to feel that way, which is good, as who knows what will happen once they leave this little enclave.
What I don’t understand, however, is the planning that seems to have gone into the main hotel on the hospital campus. I know that I cannot possibly be the only person here with a brain injury, so it makes me ponder why they would install carpeting with a pattern I am convinced is specifically designed to make one seasick. Even in the best of health I am not sure that I would be able to walk the hallway without needing a hand on the wall for support. Then again, while still in the neuroscience ward last week, there was a promotional event where a man dressed as Santa Claus came bumbling in handing out movies. He was also ringing a loud bell and yelling quite a bit. In the brain section. Good thinking. Really good. I, being attached to both incoming and outgoing tubes at the time, declined to go out, even to give him a piece of my mind, at least what I could still spare of it.
Overall the experience has been passable. My orders, as usual, are not correct, I have trouble getting to the main lobby without weaving, I am not allowed to go to the gym and my hormones are taking advantage, and my husband is bored which only makes him cranky. But educational and fun, just like the rest of my Army experience, and once they figure out how to stop my water and hormone levels from going back and forth, to and fro, up and down, I should be able to head out of here and enjoy what remains of my summer.
Until then, I think I hear the lab rats calling.