Thursday, June 14, 2012

On the Danger of Squirrels

After Tuesday's IV infusion (Alpha Lipoic Acid, something-something-choline and L-glutathiane) I had a very full day. From 8am to 1pm, I was dealing with my follow-up with Dr. Alternative with several hours of allowing various medical professionals to play 'find the vein' on my arms. Seriously the whole thing should've taken two hours tops, but my veins manage to drag it out to four, plus travel time.

But I felt good enough that I forced the family to go out for a walk at the local park. We saw two deer, watched them poop, discussed whether one of the ducks was transgendered or not and ran into an overly friendly squirrel.

My relative, who just moved out but came back for a home-cooked meal, went into 'it's an attack rat, and it's going to eaaaaaaat meeeeee' mode. So they ran off, screaming, leaving me and the toddler to calmly keep walking.

Look, I've been in the middle of various rain forests. Almost put my hand right into the coil of a sleeping baby pit viper once. Mist-netted for bats and held them in my hands--without any ER nearby to save me from rabies. I'm not going to scream over a damn squirrel.

(Of course, standing on a fire ant hill with ants swarming my feet and biting me? I totally sing (and dance) the 'get it off me' hokey-pokey at the top of my lungs.)

(When I say swarm, think Hitchcock's The Birds.)

(Not exactly on the same level as a rogue squirrel. FYI.)

So the toddler and I were walking and I was saying soothing things, trying to keep her calm as she'd picked up on everyone's fear. By everyone, I mean my relative who was still freaking out a half mile down the trail. My husband was laughing.

Then, my husband said, "Watch out, it's coming back."

Which triggered the Primal Momma Bear in me. My stomach lurched with the fight or flight response. I was ready to kill something with my bare hands, anything to protect my baby.

I turned around to see the squirrel twenty feet away. If it was coming for us, it was at the speed of a drunk, one-legged pirate who'd misplaced his peg leg.

My husband was being funny.

I mean, my dearly departed husband, because I stabbed him to death with my angry glare after that trick.

Not funny.

So not funny.

It was too late for me to do anything about the attempt to mount a stress response and it ended badly. I can't handle that kind of bullshit. I immediately had generalized back and stomach pain, fatigue, shortness of breath and rumblings of GI trouble.

Damn it.

This all meant I needed to take steroids.

But I didn't want to.

It was only GI rumblings.

Except I didn't want to make things worse either.

Weakness. Shortness of breath. Back and stomach pain.

So I compromised and took 2.5mg which seemed to be a middle road between taking 5mg and taking nothing. Luckily, the IV picked up any slack, buoying me up.

Wednesday started well, but ended with a 10mg stress dose as I hit a wall of fatigue, weakness, flank, stomach and back pain and GI symptoms. It was either take steroids or ruin my parent's 60th birthday party, which I had planned long before I caught bronchitis. Back when I thought I had a shot at normal.

BB (before bronchitis) a concert seemed like a great way to ring in 60.

But there was a lot of smoking and walking. Not so much an issue when I bought the tickets, but today's body can't hack it. I had to ask for a ride to my car like a nursing home resident.

I don't know what to do. I'm shocked that this has gone so poorly. I would never have thought I would need any steroids. I truly thought I was on the way up. I was feeling good and then bam! Hit the wall.

The only comfort I can take is at least it's not the worst adrenal stuff I've had. It could turn around.

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