Easter Getaway & A Painful Day

Before I dig into the details of my fun, family filled, exhausting but great visit home for Easter, I’m going to get yesterday’s scare out of the way.  Tuesday night passed with tossing and turning as I couldn’t seem to get comfortable.  My back was just not cooperating.  As 4 A.M. Wednesday morning rolled around, I was engulfed in an excruciating amount of lower back pain. 

Having just been to the doctor a week before, the contact number for the nurses at the hospital was still out on my nightstand.  I called, spoke with a nurse and was given some suggestions for easing the pain.  The nurse did not sound alarmed or worried since I was not having the usual symptoms that would accompany back pain to make it a worrisome case for the baby.  She recommended a warm shower or bath and to take some Tylenol.  I didn’t have Tylenol, but I did try the warm shower AND bath.  I also tried using a warmed lavender pillow on the area of discomfort.  This produced no relief, so I tried all sorts of positions sitting and laying down.  Nothing was helping.  I called the nurses again about two hours after my first call.  I was given the same suggestions by this second nurse.  I went to the store and bought the Tylenol and some ginger/lemon tea hoping that I would soon be feeling relief.  I gave the medication a few hours to work.  Still nothing.  A third and finally a fourth call to the nurses occurred by 1 P.M.  Finally the last nurse told me to just go to the ER if I was in such bad pain, though she didn’t suspect anything wrong with the pregnancy.  She said my symptoms sounded like nerve pain. 

I decided I would walk my dog before going to the hospital, and to my great surprise and relief, the pain subsided considerably by the time our walk was complete.  It was a true answer to my prayers.  Of course, I never considered a visit to the Urgent Care office one mile from our home until after the pain was over!  I’ll remember them if there happens to be a next time. 

All of this is to say that I am truly grateful to be free of pain today.  I woke up thanking God for the blessings of health and comfort!  How easily I forget to give thanks for those true gifts.  My conclusion is that I was probably suffering from sciatica, also known as sciatic nerve pain.  I hope I will not have to go through that again.  I am considering prenatal yoga as a way to strengthen my back and core muscles.  This is known to help with back pain as well as promote a healthier pregnancy and easier labor.  If I can’t find a prenatal yoga class to join I will order a dvd program to do at home.

Now that we have the bad out of the way, let’s get to the good!

I went home to visit my parents, in-laws, friends and other family for a week.  I arrived just in time for Easter.  Each day was packed with visits, and I enjoyed seeing so many wonderful people.  I went to a pre-Easter family get together straight after getting off the plane on Saturday.  Sunday was spent at church, then at a family crawfish boil (yum!,) and at my wonderful in-law’s home.  Needless to say my first thirty hours back in the South were exhausting.  I did more in that time than I’d done in the two weeks prior to the trip combined.

Thankfully things slowed down a bit after that.  On Monday I was able to celebrate an aunt’s birthday and my great-aunt and great-uncle’s wedding anniversary.  I think it was their 45th!  I also squeezed in a little time with a dear friend and my sweet brother this day.  So, maybe things weren’t slowing down! 

Tuesday was spent with a good group of old buddies.  We had breakfast together at a friend’s house, and then we headed to New Orleans for a quick trip through the French Market, Jackson Square and lunch at Pat O’Brien’s.  Our original plans were to spend time at the Audubon Zoo, but rain in the forecast changed our minds.  As things would go, the weather was fine once we got there.

After this point my days get a little mixed up, but I know my parents and I had a nice dinner and visit with my in-laws one evening.  My grandmother, parents and I spent a day shopping, eating and watching Jane Eyre (my grandmother’s favorite story.)  I was able to meet an old friend for lunch to celebrate her engagement, completion of law school and my new mother-t0-be status.  My sweet neighbors made breakfast and had me over one morning.  I know I’m leaving some things out, but I’ll just blame it on “pregnancy brain!” 

The baby got its first gifts.  These include a cute red winter pajama outfit, a baby spoon (passed down from my great grandmother to my great aunt to me) and a fuzzy guitar baby blanket.  I also received a cute maternity top from my mother-in-law and some maternity clothes from my parents.  Can you tell they’re excited!? 

As much as I enjoyed my trip, it was great to be back to my husband at the end of the week.  He was a trooper while I was gone, getting extra hours in at work and living off meals I’d frozen and left for him.  He’s the one who originally encouraged me to take the trip, and I am so thankful for all the work, sacrifices and love he invests in our relationship. 

Thank you to everyone who made my trip home a great one!  I wanted to see many more people, but there’s just never enough time to see everyone.  Also, thank you to all of you who showed concern for me as I went through yesterday’s episode.  It is a wonderful feeling to know you are loved and cared about. 

 On a side note, many of you will be shocked to know that I barely used my camera on this whole trip.  I’m still shocked with how few pictures I have from the trip.  There are only a handful of shots I got while in New Orleans and a few photos of a lizard at my parent’s home. 

All photos copyright of Melissa Berhel

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One thought on “Easter Getaway & A Painful Day

  1. This sounds like such a wonderful trip! I’m glad you got to see so many people–it can be exhausting to go home and visit, right? There’s never enough time to see everyone you want to!! I’m so relieved about your back, but so sorry you had to experience it. Practice for childbirth? 😉

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