Thursday, September 10, 2009

A Pox on Me

I mentioned in the previous post that I obtained my PhD in Psychology from an order-by-mail website. What? It's legitimate! I took a test! Ink blots and stuff! Don't judge me.

While I was at it, I decided to get a few more designations out of the way, so I'm also a minister, a marine biologist, a pilot, a tree surgeon, and a family physician. So, like, if you need my services in any of these areas just let me know, mmm'kay?

Last week I wasn't feeling totally awesome. Thursday morning I woke up all achey, but I just figured I had slept funny on my left arm. I still felt weird Friday, and I spent all Saturday traveling clear across Korea and back on trains and buses. By the time I dragged my ass home the upper left side of my back was very angry indeed. Sunday was worse, and so on Monday I paid a visit to Dr. Dolphin (named thusly because he uses the sonar in his forehead to diagnose me.) His full name is Dr. Anti Dolphin Biotic. He gives me a red and yellow antibiotic for EVERYTHING!

I explained that the worsening pain was now wrapping around from the back of me to the front. He asked me three times what trauma had caused the pain, and I told him nothing had happened. He prescribed some pain medication, muscle relaxants, and of course the red and yellow capsule. I don't know what the pain pills are but By George they worked alright on Monday! Except they start to wear off after about four or five hours and then I'm reminded I'm messed up. It feels like someone is jamming corkscrews in me. And the pills aren't being as effective as they were on Monday.

I took the last packet of pills early Wednesday morning after a fitful sleep. Those had well worn off by the time I went to work in the afternoon and HOLY CRAP I felt bad. So I went back to Dr. ADB and he gave me more pills. Yay.

It's good that I'm by and large not feeling the achey fire burn of what the doctor said was a muscle problem, but my body is still acting all weird. I'm wobbly, and my arm is shakey. My skin is crawling. I've pulled muscles before but this feels different. Bad, bad, different. Tingle fire deep-rooted bad bad very bad different. Tonight when I got home I pulled up the back of my shirt to have a look and see if maybe I've finally started growing the big glorious angel wings I've been hoping for, but no.

I'm growing an angry looking rash. Too bad Dr. ADB didn't use his eyes instead of the sonar.

So I diagnosed myself and used the google on this Internet machine for a second opinion and I'm fairly sure I've got shingles. I called my mom who knows of these things. My grandmother got shingles about five years ago and she's still suffering from it. She has postherpetic neuralgia which occurs in about 20% of people who get shingles. It's ongoing pain caused by nerve damage. I'm off to the big hospital this morning, despite my mother's commands of "NOW! GO RIGHT NOW!"

If I've got shingles, I'm contagious. I can spread chicken pox. Shall we wager on whether or not I'm going to get some time off? (Not bloody likely!) Truly I'd settle for some opioids. If I don't get time off work, let's start a pool on how many kids I share my pox with.


Foreigner Joy said...

I had shingles when I was 14. It's a pain in the ass. Treatment for me was a cream and headache pills. I don't remember being contagious though.

With proper treatment it can go away in a week. and doesn't leave a scar.

Kevin Kim said...

Yikes-- good luck dealing with shingles. Hope the visit to the big hospital goes well, and that you're better soon.


Jelly said...

Thanks, Kevin. I'm thinking of you and yours all the time.

It's pretty unusual to get shingles at such a young age, Joy! Yah, it's the same virus that causes chicken pox, so someone with shingles can give infect someone who hasn't had chicken pox yet. I don't know that it's a great idea for me to be around a bunch of kids, but as long as they or I don't touch my blisters it should be okay.