Sunday, May 04, 2014

Mastitis Purgatory

Jonathan left to spend a week in France three weeks ago.  I thought we were in really good shape.  Mom Ellis cooked a weeks worth of meals and I had a sitter coming in a few times that week for a couple hours to help out.  The first day everything went smoothly and the kids were great.  The second day we got a lot of things done and all of the shopping for Easter.  That evening I had a tender spot on my breast so I nursed Tommy more on that side and took a hot bath while he slept.  After the bath I felt very cold so I bundled up and went to bed.

But couldn't sleep and couldn't sleep.  My teeth were chattering and my body started to ache from head to toe.  Then I felt like I was in a furnace.  My breast became exquisitely sore and painful. Oh FABulous!  I watched the hours pass by unable to sleep and sent out a 3 AM petition for help on facebook for my local friends.  Mastitis hits with a vengeance and within the space of a few hours I went from feeling fine to a temp of 104 and feeling not too steady on my feet.  Sheer misery.  Tommy, for his part, slept the longest he's ever slept while I struggled to get any sleep.  Motrin and later Tylenol brought the temperature down a degree and I got about an hour of rest before getting up to get Matthew and Melissa off to school at 6 AM Wednesday morning.

Fortunately our sitter wasn't substitute teaching that day so after sending M&M off and feeding Isaac and Corinna she came at 9 to watch the little ones that morning while I went back to bed.  My midwife called in some antibiotics for me and I picked them up after picking up Isaac from preschool.  A friend came by that afternoon for a few hours and that evening Kathi and Quinn Lewis drove all the way up from San Antonio to help out.  Kathi stayed Thursday and Friday and was an absolute angel.  I really do not know how I would have done it otherwise.  She took care of the children so that I could spend my time in bed with the baby.

The fever broke a few times and then returned, but pain and lump in my breast didn't get any better despite hot compresses, rest, and feeding Tommy frequently.  Saturday night Jonathan returned home from his trip.  We put together the kid's Easter buckets.  On Sunday, Easter Sunday, I was again running a high fever and at that point the midwife advised that I go to the hospital.  Groan.

The kids were very good even though it wasn't the Easter they were expecting.  They did get their Easter buckets of loot, but I told Isaac and Corinna that the Easter bunny was waiting to hide the eggs until Mommy felt better so I could join the fun.  Matthew and Melissa were a little disappointed that we weren't having our usual Easter feast with the traditional special Easter rolls.  (Hollow sweet rolls to symbolize the tomb).  Instead they had leftover BBQ and salad.  Jonathan called around and two sisters in our ward came by to watch the kids so he could then join me at the hospital and help with Thomas.  They left 2 meals in our refrigerator too.

Tommy and I left for the hospital after talking with the midwife.  There they gave me a broad spectrum based antibiotic via IV.  Bring out the big ammunition and kill this mastitis with FIRE already!  I didn't have an abscess, thankfully, but since the one class of antibiotics wasn't working they switched the prescription to another one.  The Rocephin did the trick and that night was the end of the fevers.  Gradually over the next 3 days the pain changed from exquisitely painful to merely uncomfortable and then normal.

It was a brutal week; thank goodness for wonderful friends.  We are very blessed.


Adrasteia said...

Oh, you poor dear! It kind of seems like you're cursed with this. Doesn't it happen with every new little one? Horrible. I really hope you're feeling completely better now. :( *hugs*

Rachel Ellis said...

Every baby, and it's happened at least twice with each. If I weren't so stubborn, I'd reconsider the whole breastfeeding thing.

Yet I was dealt a pretty good hand with the pregnancy/birth bit, so I guess I can't whine, too much.