Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Torn Asunder

Sometimes the best planned things just work out different.  It's sometimes better; it's sometimes worse but plans can be considered "torn asunder".

Yesterday was my husband's birthday.  I had the day planned out to the letter.  We were going to rise, I would present Alex with his birthday cards from me, both dogs, the cat, and the 30 or so fish that grace our pond.  I would then make him a festive breakfast of pancakes shaped like Mickey Mouse, fry him up some pepper cured bacon, and make him a pot of strong Starbucks French Roast coffee.  

We had luncheon reservations at the Rotunda at Neiman Marcus at 12 PM.  After lunch, I was going to take Alex to a lovely clothing shop to find him a new sports coat.  

When did all this start to go wrong?  Actually, it started going wrong on Saturday when I awoke feeling like I had been run over twice by an 18 wheeler.  For a week, I had been taking "Sudafed" because of a sinus thing that had me using whole boxes of Kleenex per day.  I got the "you have to ask for it and sign your name for it and promise you won't be making crack cocaine out of it" type of Sudafed.  I figured that if it didn't clear up my sinuses, I would indeed make up some crack cocaine just to make myself feel better.  You know, either / or.

Saturday, I started coughing that cough that seems to come up from your ovaries.  I also began to feel the pain between my shoulder blades that told me, "You are one sick little Indian."  I still thought I might be recovered soon enough to show my husband a good time on his birthday.  By Sunday, my hopes were being dashed as I looked and felt three-quarters dead.  

I awoke early on Monday morning with a throbbing headache and wondered if I had slept at all since I had to sit up in bed to keep from strangling.  I was feverish and lethargic, still I got up and pulled out all of the birthday cards.  When I greeted my dogs, I found out that I no longer had a voice beyond a squeak about every 4th word.  Much as I wanted to make Alex the Mickey Mouse pancakes, I was too sick to even stand.  I figured massive quantities of coffee might help.  The caffeine did help.  After two cups, I was still sick but my hands were shaking so I figured on was on the right track.

I had every intention of going through with our luncheon plans, even though Alex began to look at me like I had lost my mind.  He left for a 10 AM appointment with the eye doctor and I performed my ablutions.  By the time I finished my make up, I realized something truly amazing.  I felt like death was imminent but I looked pretty damn good.  Now, if that doesn't give you a lift, I don't know what does!  Alex phoned from the eye doctor and told me the doctor was running over an hour late, so I needed to cancel our lunch reservations.  (I squeaked an "okay" at him.)  Actually, I was sort of relieved not to be going into the City because I was so fragile.  By this time, I was pretty sure I had pneumonia or worse.  Alex arrived home close to noon and said "Oh poor baby" when I squeaked my "hello" to him, but followed that up with "But you look really good!"  Okay, I've always said, "It's not how you feel, it's how you look", but in this case being a cute corpse seemed to becoming more and more likely.

We went to lunch at a local seafood restaurant where the Italian waiters all love me.  They all came over to hug and kiss me when I walked in and I tried to warn them that I had cooties and the would be better off not touching me.  Ignoring my protests, they all threw their arms around me and kissed me.  Dumb bastards!  I was too sick to eat, but I had ordered to please the one waiter who insisted "You've got to eat, Darling!"

About halfway through the meal, I told Alex in my squeaks that I needed to go to the doctor.  I texted him that I was probably dying.  He was concerned and went outside to see about getting me an appointment.  I was laying on the table when he came back inside.  (Only the top of me was laying on the table, not all of me.  You really can't trust Italian waiters that much.)  My appointment was set for 2:30 PM.

I made it to the doctor's office and the receptionist kept asking me questions and looking at me like I was stupid.  Not being able to talk makes one look strange because your mouth is moving but nothing is coming out.  I gave her my credit card for my co-pay so she could figure out who I was.  Finally, when I got to see my doctor, I was on the verge of collapse.  I had a raging fever and I thought about asking him to call a priest to give me the last rites.  He stuck a thermometer in my ear and told me my temperature was "normal".  

What?  How could that be?  I really couldn't explain much to him because I couldn't talk.  He listened to my chest (fine), took my blood pressure (fine), and gave me an order for a "Z Pack" of antibiotics, and a steroid nasal spray.  I was near tears because I had been so sure it was deadly pneumonia.  My doctor told me I was sick, but not that sick.  I looked too good to be really sick.

I walked out feeling much better.  And I bought champagne for Alex's birthday dinner of chicken marsala. Oh, and I'm getting my voice back too.