Sick Day!

Sick Day

As promised, I’m trying to get the hang of semi-regular blogging. If you’ve ever had the pleasure, some might say misfortune, of being caught alone with me, you know that I’m not one for brevity in my speech. So finding things to talk about is not the hard part; the struggle comes in finding the time to put finger to key (the new ‘putting pen to paper’? no?). Luckily, I find myself ‘funemployed’ in this strange transitional period pre-San Francisco, so I have a little spare time to jot down some thoughts.

Last Wednesday, 2 days short of my “last day of work” (over-emphasized air quotes have never been more appropriate), I spent most of the day working from a banquette in the restaurant (the cantina portion, which houses the office, doesn’t open until 6pm, so we can sprawl out for all of the work day) so that I could alternate between sitting up and lying down because I felt so weak. When Eric finally picked me up (1 car household!!!) to head home, I casually mentioned that I didn’t feel so good and would maybe just sleep the rest of the evening. Before heading to bed, I took my temperature and discovered I was running a slight fever of 102.4F. Eric persuaded me to head into an Urgent Care center to get checked out. The center was so very nice – no wait, complimentary juice and snacks (though I had no interest in food or drink), and a very comfortable doctor’s room.

The technician, Charlotte (so comforting, like a mother), took my blood pressure (always good) and temperature (“Wow, you really are running a fever!”) and after chatting with the doctor (“Yes to muscle pain, no to everything else”), I went through a series of tests: swab in the back of the throat for Strep, swab up the nose to test for Mono, finger prick to test for Influenza, and finally a blood draw to test for West Nile (have you heard about the crazy outbreak of West Nile in Dallas?) They all returned negative and I headed home with an assurance that it was ‘probably nothing’.

Skip ahead 2 days and the mildly bumpy red rash that has developed on my wrists seems to be spreading, my throat is as sore as ever, and my energy levels are still a little sluggish. Upon our second visit to MedSpring Urgent Care, the doctor took one quick look down my throat and said “Aha! That’s a case of (with a chuckle) Herpangina“. Apparently when I came in on Wednesday, my symptoms were not far along enough for the doctor to be able to diagnose my virus. But on this Saturday visit, it was clear that I was afflicted with what is commonly called Hand, Foot, and Mouth disease. Yes, I, at 24, was suffering from a disease that typically affects children ages 3-10 and is so mild that the prescribed medicine is ‘tepid sponge baths’ and ‘mushy foods’. Of course.

After a failed attempt at taking the pills that were originally prescribed (I can’t swallow medicine) the doctor set up a new prescription for liquid antibiotics, which I’ve been shooting into the back of my throat for the past few days. Fun! I have one dose left but I am feeling much, much better and am now focusing all my attention to the game of cardboard-box tetris that is currently being played in the corner of the living room.

Here’s hoping that this bout of sickness was my allotted one per decade and that the foreseeable future is healthy, healthy, healthy. There were a few moments in the throes of the sickness (dramatic effect intended) that I thought perhaps I had caught something much more serious, and my thoughts played a game of worst-case scenario (as thoughts are wont to do). There’s really nothing like a brush with the abnormal to make you realize just how lucky and healthy and able-bodied you are. I sure am grateful for that.