Last week’s fierce winds meant that there was a lot of pollen and other stuff in the air, including pine pollen, which ordinarily is too heavy and sticky to become airborne. So when, Wednesday night, I felt some irritation in my throat, I didn’t think much of it – I figured it was just a side-effect of the allergies that were making my nose run and eyes burn. Thursday, the irritation grew worse – it wasn’t really soreness, but almost a bruised feeling that made swallowing harder – but it was still easily dismissed as related to all of the allergens in the air. I kept taking antihistamines and drinking herb tea.
Friday, however, the problem definitely could NOT be dismissed as allergies. I had a raging sore throat, swallowing was really painful, and I had swollen glands, a mild headache, and a slight fever. I was not a happy camper on the way up to Five O’Clock Somewhere Friday afternoon.
Saturday morning, I couldn’t get out of bed, except briefly to use the bathroom or dose myself up with all the remedies available – diphenhydramine, ibuprofen, my very precious stash of pseudoephedrine, and the herbal teas, which contained such things as thyme and licorice root, specifically targeted at upper-respiratory ailments. Pat and Tadpole went to the marina, both to work on it and to meet
As it was, the regatta didn’t happen. Black Magic was the only boat to sign up, and at the time the racing was to begin, there were threatening thunderstorms in the area. So Pat stuck around and did more work on the marina, and Penzance gave Tadpole a ride back to Albuquerque, where he was to go to a friend’s Sweet Sixteen party that evening.
About seven, Tadpole called to ask where Pat had left the key to El Caballero, so he could drive to the party, which was in a different part of town about six miles away. I was able to tell him exactly where the key was: right on the end of the dining table at Five O’Clock Somewhere. Since the city bus system in
Saturday night was a rough one for me. Thanks to all of that herbal tea, the sore throat pain had subsided. But my legs refused to settle down to rest, and what little sleep I did get was marred by the old nightmares that have mostly been banished. The restless legs were probably a side-effect of the pseudoephedrine; the nightmares purely psychological – too many reminders of a very bad time in the past.
Sunday morning, I was in worse shape. The sore throat was back, in all of its glory, my eyes were swollen and goopy from waking up crying from the nightmares, and the fever was back, too, so I was both shivering and sweating at the same time. I stayed in bed until after , getting up only to get myself tea.
Eventually, I began to feel better. The sore throat abated, the nasal congestion decreased, and the fever went away. I took a shower, and I was almost feeling human afterward. Pat and I made a brief visit to the marina, and then we headed home to
The medical establishment would probably disagree with the way that I handled my cold, but then, the medical establishment caused the events that gave me both the nightmares and physical disabilities, and then the medical establishment tried to “cure” the situation by giving me anti-psychotic drugs that did away with the nightmares by doing away with ALL dreams and killing my emotions so that I was a robot for the first three years of my son’s life. I have almost no memory of that time period. Of course, the drugs also had the side-effect of leaving me without any strength to pursue a malpractice lawsuit; that was left to the family of a patient that this doctor and hospital had actually killed.
I quit the drugs when I found I couldn’t get life insurance while on them; I had to go seven years without “seeking or receiving treatment for mental illness” and without killing myself in order to be insurable. So I did that, and I’m glad I did. I’m glad to be free of the drugs. I’d rather deal with the occasional nightmare than go without dreams.