Saturday, November 12, 2011

Kidney Stones

     This is the longest I've had between posts here and I'll definitely blame it on kidney stones. I woke up last Thursday with a pain building in my back that I quickly recognized as kidney stones (I've been through it about 3 times in the past 6 years I think). I took some Tylenol 3's (that's 60 mg of codiene) and figured I'd tough it out. When I got to school though I realized there was no way I'd be able to function so I came back home. With applying heat (hot baths, heating pad) and T3's every 4 hours I wasn't in terrible pain though and actually felt well enough to attend our Thursday night small group. However when I woke up Friday morning I had a few waves of nausea. Stupidly, I thought once again that I could handle going to school, but within 20 minutes of being there I threw up (which I haven't ever experienced with kidney stones, though it is apparently quite common). I called the doctor and he recommended I get some gravol into me so that I could keep down the T3 pills (I'll leave it to your imagination how I had to take the gravol). Amazingly I was able to go to our Friday night house church as well.
     Saturday I was continuing to deal with the pain, and this had now gone on longer than my previous kidney stone experiences. Usually it's only been a day or so of pain and then I may or may not notice the passing of a stone in the next week. I tried to wean off of the T3's a bit but we had plans to go to Exeter for an anniversary dinner out with Beth's siblings so I still needed something for the pain. I had a great meal (I think it was called green apple chicken, but it was delicious) but it was the most I had eaten in 2 days so I got full pretty quickly.
     Sunday I made it to church but when people decided to go out for lunch I had to opt out. But I was really trying not to take pain medicine, especially as it wreaks havoc with your bowels as well and who needs that complication? By the evening I decided I wouldn't try to go to school on Monday (but of course had to go in Sunday to prepare for the day). I was pretty much pain free on Monday but my body was obviously still recovering - slight fever, some sweats, very tired. I think I probably passed a stone at some point but 5 days later I know things still aren't completely back to normal. I called the doctor and will go see him next Tuesday - I hope he orders some blood work (creatnine levels measure kidney function) and/or an ultrasound.
     My one accomplishment from this past week has been completing the listening of one full page in the personal listening guide which I created earlier this year. One page represents about 70 albums (yeah, I said albums, I am 54 years old y'know) so it's a fair bit of listening. The other main music I've been listening to is Bob Bennett's "Jesus Music Again". Bob had sent me a prerelease version but the final production is really fun and beautiful. He and his friends take some classic old songs (all of which I have in original versions) and rework them in his own creative style. I'm lovin' it!
     I heard 2 amazing speakers this week. On Tuesday night I watched the message from The Meeting House where Tony Campolo spoke. I've been reading and listening to Tony for decades now and he's always been a favourite, but seeing him make such a powerful presentation at his age (he's now 76) really blew me away. I'd highly recommend checking out the video podcast - the guy is just amazing! This past Thursday we went down to Toronto to hear Rob Bell speak. He's a much younger author/pastor/speaker who I've appreciated for a few years now. Beth and I heard him at the Festival of Faith and Writing back in 2008 and were really impressed. His talk at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on the CNE grounds was excellent - it was like a 2.3 hour concert but without a band, just story after story with lesson after lesson. A special treat for us was seeing our old friend Tom Doherty there and getting to connect with him. Tom was my first guitar teacher, sang at our wedding and at my sister Kelly's funeral. We shared heart surgery scars as he was operated on just last Christmas. He also recommended some more authors for me to check out that write on what he called 'progressive Christianity'.

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