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Connecticut River Valley, New England, United States

Friday, February 26, 2016

Going Stir Crazy

Tuesday and Wednesday I stayed in all day. While it was sunny it was cold and I felt very tired. Tuesday, in particular, I spent primarily sleeping and reading and drinking tea and cold drinks.I could feel a slight improvement though I didn't expect miracles in one day. My throat was less sore, my ears, too and though coughing it wasn't constant or forceful. Bill, being still recuperating was also glad for a day of rest and watched Fox News most of the day. When he went out to eat, again at Chili's, I watched Colin Firth in Kingsman--a light film not requiring extraordinary strength to enjoy. That night, however, was long and filled with coughing. Hardly slept at all. On Wednesday, the throat and ears were back in full force and I was exhausted. Bill said he had to get outdoors and was going to drive up to Cloudcroft--a road I've refused to ride for many years. I goes to a ski area and looks very steep and curvy on the map. That spells precipices, mostly on the passenger side in my experience, and so I opted for the equally irritating chore of paying March bills. We planned on leaving but extended to Thursday. The plan was hopefully to go to Socorro, where I know the internet is iffy so wanted to pay the bills now so I would not have to worry about making due dates if we went to Socorro and then to our friends' in Belen. The worked for us both, since Bill hates to be around when I'm shuffling bank accounts and bills--a chore I hate. He was back by 1030 but I'd not done any book-keeping, having called my sister to catch up and then receiving a call from Betsy once he returned and Barb and I signed off. But, the work was fairly simple and while he read I got it done. By the time he was going out to dinner my throat was so swollen it was difficult to swallow. I ate some chili chicken noodle soup which helped a bit and took more tea with the magic potion. I so wanted to take a couple of Aleve PM but with the throat the way it was and the fact that my sinuses started to fill by evening and I was having real trouble breathing, I didn't dare. I just hate taking meds of any kind and because of that have not a clue how they are going to interact with each other. I think I subconsciously was worried I wouldn't wake up--not terribly rational I know, but by this time I was exhausted, feeling claustrophobic by nightfall, since I couldn't open the curtains or the window, and panicy. Another night of insomnia or at least hour spurts of sleep interspersed with two hours of lying there in the dark--unable to turn on a light and read or go on the computer and not able to got outside in the 20 degree weather to get a fresh breath of air. Before the night was over I was having coughing fits from deep down in the chest and producing nothing. I sounded like a hollow drum and was totally drained by the end of the bout. Our poor neighbors--I never went to the breakfast room--didn't want to spread what I've started calling the Kill the Gringo Disease and surely did not want to make eye contact with any of m sleepless fellow travelers. So, yesterday, we made the decision to stay until today and that I would go back to Urgent Care today, if things continued to be difficult with no real improvement. I also agreed to go up to Cloudcroft because Bill said the road was fine and he knew I'd love it. We stopped at Urgent Care to see what time it opens on Friday, only to discover that it isn't open on Fri, Sat or Sun. So the nurse suggested we come back around 1, when she thought the, again, crowded waiting room might clear out. That gave us about an hour and a half. What a beautiful day and what a beautiful drive. I sat on a bench in the sun at the site of the old railroad trestle and would have been happy to sit there for hours. Unfortunately, we had to get back down to the doctor's. Got there exactly at 1, room full and got to see the Dr at 330, which is when they normally close. Told Lady Montana all that was happening. She took notes, looked at my file and said you are normally so healthy this must be driving you mad--hit the nail on the head with that one! When the Doctor came in he was not at all like he was on Monday. He very abruptly told me there was nothing he could do for me--it is viral--he gave me the best antibiotic out there. The honey had to take care of the throat. I shouldn't expect to have gotten better in four days. I said, wait a minute--I didn't come here for more meds necessarily. I don't know what to expect with this thing and since I couldn't see ANY improvement I did not want to finish my meds on Friday, find out I was worse and have to wait three days to get more meds if needed. That I did not want to go back to square one by having a break in treatment if that was what was needed. I said I came back to be evaluated and guided as to what happens next. He warmed up a bit and asked if I'd ever had a breathing treatment, I said no. So he decided to give me a nebulizer treatment. I asked if any over the counter drug would help with the decongestion. Said he didn't pay attention to them, ask the pharmacist. Said an inhaler was good, but he didn't prescribe one. Said I could take the Aleve PM to help me sleep without worry. When Miss Montana came in to set up the nebulizer she asked if he gave me more meds. I said no but that was fine, that wasn't my motive for coming. I think she had a talk with him because when he came back he was much more concerned--said that the antibiotic continues to work for ten days after I stop it and that this cough can last for six weeks. I asked if I was contagious and he said no, since I'm on antibiotics and have been. Besides, he'd been up to Alb and everyone there has the same thing. So if Bud hasn't gotten it yet from someone else, he probably won't get it from me. I think he is just exhausted--he works M-Th without lunch from 7-3:30 or when the last patient leaves. Miss Montana said they were there until 6 on Monday. On Friday they do all the lab cleaning and prep for the next week. I saw that room twice--four days of that would kill a horse. He's a good man and his staff is too. I just got him at the tail end of the tail end of his week. I'd be pissy, too! So, knowing I'm not going to die but that I'm going to feel sick for awhile and that like last night I'll be coughing hard for quite awhile and probably sleeping poorly, we went to Johnny Carino's where I had roast chicken bow tie medley, house salad, bread and garlic olive oil and three glasses of Malbec. Still, went to bed at 9, up at 10 until 11, up at 1 until 2, up at 3 until 530 and finally up at 630 for the day. It is hopeless. But I loved my meal. Happy to say, Bill finishes his meds tonight too and is pretty okay, so there is hope for me.

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