I would joke that I’m not dead…


I would joke that I’m not dead, but it just doesn’t seem like a good thing to say right now. Over the past few weeks, people have been dying quite a bit in my life. First, there was a classmate at UAH who took his own life, leaving behind a little girl and a lot of people wondering why. Then, last Friday, a fellow YSA, Tad, died in a car crash along with his girlfriend, Leigh Anna. Tad was 19, Leigh Anna was 16, and the driver of the other car had been drinking. A couple of days ago, a man that was like a second father to my mother and was a major fixture in my whole family’s life died. I think his may have actually been one of those happier to hear about “died in his sleep” kind of things.

I have to pull off the impossible in a few hours. I have to get ink for my printer, print out a paper for my Honors class to turn in for my final, and then I have to make sure I get to Tad’s funeral on time. I’ve emailed a copy of the paper to my teacher, but I would really like her to have a hard copy in case she couldn’t open the file. I haven’t gone to bed yet because I’m watching a special documentary thing on Beslan, and I may watch a rerun of Hack at 5 with my mom. Then, I’ll grab about four hours of sleep and wake up at 10 feeling refreshed because that’s how I roll.

I’ve been very sick recently. Remember in November when I got that sinus infection, and then it repeated itself a few months later? Remember how I was cursing the makers of Biaxin because it didn’t work and it made me sick? Well, the sinus infection had gone into hibernation after that last time. When my back pain finally got to the point where I couldn’t stand it anymore, I called my doctor and asked him if he could see me. He did, giving me a prescription for a muscle relaxer and steroids. Now, if you’ve ever watched House, you know that if you give someone who has a compromised immune system and has a resilient infection, then that infection will grow RAPIDLY. The quick pack of pills was over in 6 days, and by the second day, my ear was hurting a little. My sinuses began to flare up quickly after that, and by the end of that sick day pack, I was sick. Well, that was Friday night. You can’t go to the doctor (usually, unless another doctor has office hours on the weekend and is seeing my doctor’s patients that day) on Saturdays or Sundays. I waited it out to Monday. This was not good. As it was clearly bacterial, it grew and intensified. I was coughing, I could barely hear, and my head felt really heavy. The good news was, I felt no more back pain, even though the pain had not really left…I was just so sick that the pain did not register as important enough to be noticed.

On Monday afternoon, I went to the doctor, and I knew he would say Biaxin again. I wasn’t going to have it. I told him my symptoms and I told him that I did not want Biaxin. (I’m allergic to four major antibiotics, so it’s generally going to be between Levaquin and Biaxin. He hates to use Levaquin on me because he knows it works well and doesn’t want me to become allergic to it.) He almost said Biaxin until I told him about the ears. He looked in my right one, and said it was pretty good. He looked in my left for a split second and nearly jumped back. Apparently, the infection was SEVERE in there. He said Biaxin wouldn’t have cut it with that one.

I’m starting to do better now. It’s a little hard to breathe sometimes. My throat gets irritated quickly and I have to drink constantly to keep from coughing. My mom thinks the infection was either a staph or strep infection that got caught in my sinuses and, eventually, my ear, because the pain was so severe in my ear and my throat, and because of the difficulty that we’ve had in treating this thing.

I would have probably gotten better more quickly if my immune system could handle the job a little better. If my core body temperature wasn’t 97.0 normally, then I could probably fight off infections a little easier. When my temperature was checked at the doctor it was 98.3. The nurse was about to discount this as a low temp. It may seem low, since normal is 98.6. But if my temperature is normally 1.6 degrees cooler than a normal person, then 98.3 is like if I had a temperature of 99.9 if I had a regular body that worked properly.

Oh, I found out officially in the X Rays from my back that I have scoliosis. They have never officially told me that. I’ve had spinal films done before, but they typically thought it was out of alignment because I would have back spasms. Apparently, now they think I have a curvy spine. If I remember correctly from the films when I was 10, it curves to the left in the lumbar region. When the techs were doing the films that day, they were only supposed to be doing the thoracic region, but they seemed to get intrigued by something they noticed on it and decided to also do my lumbar area. It was probably the scoliosis.


About Janet Morris

I’m from Huntsville, Alabama. I’ve got as many college credits as a doctorate candidate, and the GPA of some of them, too. I have a boss by the name of Amy Pond. She’s a dachshund. My parents both grew up in Alabama.