Monday, September 20, 2010

My PTS Story

You may think that I missed the rest of the acronym but I really don't think that the D in the whole equation fits my experience very well.

I didn't even know I had it. It actually seems kind of lame to talk about it even now. Why do we talk about difficult things in our lives? Trauma? Are we vying for sympathy? Or is what I feel right now, the feeling that if I tell my story maybe there are others out there who have the same/similar experience that need somewhere to connect and maybe, just maybe there is an institution that needs re-vamping. You be the judge.

On our way home from our honeymoon 3 years ago I was laying in the passenger seat with my teeth chattering. I knew I was sick but thought I had the flu. I just wanted to get home to the apartment, take a bath and go to sleep. Hours later it was after 2 in the morning and I am sitting in the bath crying, shaking, sweating and not able to talk in a coherent manner. My SM took me to the ER where I ended up spending several hours answering questions to a nurse and a student doctor and filing paperwork in-between bouts of not being able to remember things and my chattering teeth. By that point my sweater was soaked through with sweat. I think they gave me 2 over the counter pain killers.

When the doctor finally arrived he asked if I had any idea what I might have I responded that I thought it may be a UTI considering I had just gotten married and it can go with the territory when it is your first partner. (Can I tell I am trying to put that as tactfully as possible, HA, I just didn't want to blast your delicate sensibilities with the fact that many virgins after having sex for the first time go rounds with a UTI.) The doctor briskly told me that wasn't the case, I didn't have a UTI and he needed to perform a vaginal exam. Out came the cold metal speculum, the room was filled with few nurses the doctor and the woman doing paperwork. It was cold and I was terrified and mortified. I had never had an exam. I had always been taught that everything there was private, that I shouldn't let people violate my privacy. I was confused, sick and both SM and I were worried so we didn't say anything. I just cried. After that they finally ran the urine test, the doctor came in shortly after and said "you have a bad UTI", he wrote me a prescription for antibiotics and sent me home. The didn't start me on any and we had to wait through the rest of the night to get the prescription filled as soon as anything opened.

To make a bad story worse it turns out that he gave me the wrong type of antibiotic and only a few days worth when I needed at least 10 days. It goes on with more drama from there but it would just subtract from the original story which was giving you a peak at my PTS realization.

I went in to the ER on Saturday night. Why? Well because I knew I had a bad UTI and of course it was Saturday night so nothing but the ER is open and nothing on Sunday and I knew I couldn't wait until Monday morning. Seriously, somebody needs to get a 24 hour clinic up in this joint. There was hardly any paperwork and there was no one waiting so I got right in to see an RN. When the doctor came in for his 5 second visit he had me lay down so that he could touch my stomach and back to see if there were key pain points. I froze. I started shaking and feeling panicked, when he touched me I flinched.

I can laugh at myself a bit now. The doctor on Saturday didn't do anything, just his job. But on the inside I knew I had touched on something. And now what do I do about it? Well, when a traumatic event has happened it takes telling the story at least 50 times for it to become history. So here is my

After reviewing I should actually add that this is not a diagnosis of any kind but merely a way, with some dry humor, to describe the emotions that I ran in to during my ER visit on Saturday and realizing that I still felt somewhat victimized by the events in the ER 3 years ago.


  1. I was diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Jan '07. At the time I was recovering from a 77 day stay in ICU, where I died twice and was in a coma for almost four weeks. All that being said, when I began counseling with a qualified therapist for the PTSD, I began talking about things I had never mentioned to anyone since trying to tell my mother. There were some sexual crimes within my family, but my mother told me quickly we didn't talk of such things. Therapy has been great, although half of my family doesn't speak to me or my family anymore. I am stronger, happier, and closer to our daughters than ever. Life is so good. I look forward to reading more of your posts and seeing where it has taken you ~ Oh, I found you from a comment you left on Veranda Interiors. Isn't she an awesome decorater?!

  2. Was that Sanford you went to that night? (One of your parent's phone's had gotten left at the house that day so a 2 am call/text woke me up that night and I prayed for you.)

  3. Yes it was at Sanford and thanks!

    Nancy - she is great!

    As I have never had anything of that kind happen in my family I can only imagine the trauma it would leave considering just that incident in the hospital left me feeling traumatized. I am so glad you were able to find a place to open up!