Entries Tagged 'general frustration' ↓

Itchy and Scratchy

I’ve been sick for a while, it’s my own fault, really. Do you ever get into an unintentional standoff with your spouse? This time it was over the shower in the master bedroom. After years of begging him to squeegee it and leave the door open so it could dry between showers I gave up and started using the upstairs bathroom. I figured his mess, his problem.

I didn’t realize that a shower I didn’t use could bother me so badly.

I waited.

I waited some more.

I think, but cannot confirm, advanced life forms developed in the stall. I heard the whispering late in the night.

I waited.

When I began to hear jeering and catcalls as I passed through the room, I broke down. I’m weak like that.

I decided to tackle the job piecemeal. I sprayed down one wall and attacked it with a scrub brush, thankful that it all appeared to be a surface problem and the grout wasn’t actually discolered. 

A short time later, cooking dinner, I was hit with nausea so fierce it made room spins pleasant. I laid down in the middle of the den where passing children and dogs took turns sniffing and prodding me, demanding to be fed. My insides churned and I cursed Tim for never getting checked after his procedure and worried I was pregnant. Slowly it passed.

After dinner I went back to the shower to bathe Wallace who is allergic to the fleas he’s thoughtfully brought to visit. The poor thing is miserable, so I hung out with him while the shampoo cured.

This time I was sure it was food poisoning.

Slowly the pounding head and churning stomach turned to a full blown allergy attack. I’ve had allergies all my life. I’ve learned to manage them pretty well and have reaosonable coping skills for when they spiral out of control. 

I came close to begging Tim to stay home from work, something I’ve never done, even with the flu or surgery. I made it through the day, whining all the while. Benadryl, Claritin, hydroxizine (I had leftover from a case of hives), I might as well have been popping Tic-Tacs. Nothing brought the sneezing under control. I only stopped when I had to leave the house.

Slowly the light turned on.

I went into our bathroom, opened the door to the shower, there is no delicate way to put it, so we’ll just say my sinuses expressed their fury. 

I woke the husband up, gave him a bottle of bleach, a scrub brush, and left the area.

Now, I’m happy to report the shower is dry and there is a new-to-us-dehumidifier busily sucking gallons of water from the air. 

The downside is the mold started a cascade I haven’t been able to completely stop. The every day allergens I’m sensitive to, but haven’t bothered me in years are making my life miserable. I’m on new medications and I have an appointment with an allergist for Tuesday. Just before I finally became pregnant with Aidan I began immunotherapy, but had to stop as I wasn’t far enough into the therapy to continue during pregnancy. Off and on I had been considering trying again, but something always came up. I planned to ask for the referral in winter, as most allergy medications will interfere with the testing. Today is day one of having to quit antihistamines cold turkey. I called my mom who has agreed to monitor the kids if my allergies flare up out of control. 

My eyes are itching and Tuesday seems a long way away.

Sunday’s Scare

It started out like most other evenings where Tim is heading into nights. I try to get the kids settled a little early to make up for whatever else comes our way. With three little kids, it’s always something nightmares, growing pains, or just “I’m thirsty!” I plopped all three kids in the tub. Other than a little eye goo Ellie was fine. I was giving her 24 hours to get over it on her own before I pestered our doctor. Ellie happily sat in the tub playing with her big brothers and I started to clean up the kitchen and put away laundry, usual stuff. I wander in and out of the bathroom, they play and soak off most of the kid grime. 

Ellie started crying, so I picked her up and put her in the shower for a quick soap bubble rinse off. I admit it, I yelled at the boys from dripping water from one end of the bathroom to the other getting extra washcloths. (They pretend they are seals).  I started drying Ellie off when I noticed she was a strange color, kind of purplish, as though she were freezing cold even though I had just pulled her from a warm shower. I wrapped the towel around her and took her to her room where I sat down to rock her and warm her up before putting her clothes on.  She had stopped fussing and was nodding off. I don’t know how to explain that this just isn’t something my kids do. Even when exhausted by a long day of play they still look at books or play with toys for a long time before settling down for the night. They don’t nod off. Ever.

This is when I began to get scared. I put her diaper on and some warm pjs since she still seemed chilled. She wasn’t rousing and that’s when I paid attention to her breathing, it was shallow and she paused between breaths. I called my mom. I thought I might be overreacting, but she agreed with my desire to take her to the ER. I had begun to wonder if maybe she had been knocked over in the tub. I began to be scared she was drowning in front of me, even though her color was better. I called Tim while I finished getting everyone ready to head out the door.

I loaded all the kids and headed toward the Moncks Corner Trident. I don’t particularly care for that place, but sometimes you take the closest option.

She wouldn’t wake up. I drove with one hand behind me,, shaking and tickling her foot, “Ellie, Ellie, stay awake. Talk to mama. Please? Aidan, tell me if her eyes are open.”

Aidan, “They’re shut, Mama.”

Cue other child dramatics, Mark unlocks and opens one of the rear doors. Tim had taken one of the carseats on accident and frankly, I just wasn’t going to quibble over 2 inches when the baby couldn’t breathe. Ellie was in Mark’s seat and Mark was strapped in the booster which must give him more freedom than the standard seat.

Eventually we arrive, she’s still doing the shallow breaths with long pauses and doesn’t want to come around. Her eyes would open for a few seconds, not really focusing and then she’d fall back asleep. This ER has a security guard that helps out with admin. I thought filling out the form with trouble breathing, poor color, unusually sleepy might move things along. No.

I was sent to the waiting area where the boys pushed the limits, knowing I was distracted and while I’m sorry they were being obnoxious, I couldn’t really care at that moment. I was trying to get Ellie to stay awake, trying to get her to do anything other than lie limply in my arms. My mother arrived to help with the boys before I was called to fill out paperwork. I was waffling in that grey area, not knowing if I needed to cause a scene. Eventually we were called to the admin desk and as soon as they had the insurance information (which this order of events pisses me off) we were taken into triage.

The male nurse began to take Ellie’s vitals and he quickly became very concerned, as she didn’t want to rouse for him, either. Her temperature at that point was 99, which didn’t say much. I think we were both operating under the idea that something had to have happened in the tub, since I couldn’t officially rule it out. There was some discussion in the hallway that I could half hear, about where to put Ellie, my nurse won and we were headed for Room 1, where we would spend the next six hours. They took her temperature again and this time it was 103.5. I don’t think I have ever been reassured by a fever before

Blood draws, strep tests, flu tests, chest x-rays, urine cultures all followed in rapid succession and she only came around for the worst of each procedure. When the IV was put in I sent my keys with someone to give to my mom so she could take the boys out for ice cream rather than annoying the entire waiting room. Some tests and observations came back, no pneumonia, no UTI, but she did have strep and the doctor believes she also has the flu, but because everything happened so quickly she wasn’t carrying enough of a viral load to show up on the swab. They began to administer antibiotics via IV for the strep and Ellie and I settled in for the wait and the inevitable insurance argument. Cigna Health Insurance, if you are monitoring your Google Alerts, have your damn customer service line open for emergencies. To not have someone on is ridiculous and lead to unnecessary stress and frustration trying to convince the admin lady that we have an FSA and yes, you got poor reviews on the follow up survey.

Around 11 the doctor ordered another blood test to check her white count, which had risen. Even though Ellie had perked up some, the doctor wanted to perform a spinal tap to rule out meningitis. 

I sent my mom home with the boys.

I can handle needles and blood, but I chickened out of staying in the room for the spinal tap.  I stood in the hallway and prayed. The fluid looked clear and the preliminary tests showed no infection. At 2 am we were released to go home with antibiotic prescriptions and strict orders to follow up with our family doctor.

We still have no idea why she had trouble breathing. It’ll be a while before I’m comfortable leaving her, since it came on so fast. It’s Tuesday morning and she has the sparkle back in her eyes. She’s not up to full speed, but she’s on her way.

You Too Can Haiku

Just remember it’s 5, 7, 5. It’s supposed to be about nature, but I find it fun to be spontaneous.

This evening’s muse? 


Children are running
Baby squeals, boys are shrieking
Head pounds, Tylenol.

Eye twitches, nerves frayed.
Dogs are pacing, children scream.
Glass of wine for me?

Not hungry, too full
Eat two bites, this is dinner
Bed time, I am hungry!

To Sleep Perchance to Breathe

I’ve dealt with typical hay fever my whole life.  Occasionally I’d wheeze, but I never really ventured into full blown asthma territory.

For an unknown reason I broke out in hives on Thursday. I had meetings and music lessons and too much life happening to do anything but wander through the day in a benadryl haze and hope things got better. They didn’t.

It’s never a good thing when someone winces as you remove an article of clothing.

It’s also probably not good when you don’t ask what shot is being administered.

I was also prescribed something along the lines of Benadryl on Steroids. The label on the bottle doesn’t mince words DO NOT DO ANYTHING DANGEROUS while on this medication. For some reason this tickles me as I zombie my way through the day.

The one thing my doctor and I agree on is that we don’t know what caused the problem in the first place. It could be viral, could have been something environmental, and I hope it’s not due to stress. I’ve been in more stressful situations in the past with no extreme reactions. I know I’m a little neurotic, but I don’t think I’ve ever caused a full body meltdown.

Disappointment Is Sticky Sweet

I lurk frequenty on FriendFeed, a nifty social media site. As with most areas of my life the conversation frequently turns to food. For the last two or three weeks I had seen references to Starbuck’s salted caramel hot chocolate. The name caught my imagination and curiosity. 

The drink I envisioned would be hot, topped with real whipped cream and just a drizzling of caramel. The whipped cream would slowly melt into a chocolatey, caramely concoction with a lingering tingle of salt.

I keep an emergency gift card in the car and during yesterday’s chilly afternoon I had a moment to stop at Starbucks, alone. There would be no demands to share. This was a stolen treat for a solitary drive. 

The young lady in the drive through praised my choice, causing my excitement to rise. As I took the cup, I was practically giddy. I pulled away from the drive through and took my first sip. It was thick and sticky, syrupy sugar coating my tongue. I suppose some things are better left to the imagination.

At least I was able to enjoy my drive in silence.


The process by which the increase in length of time on earth is equal to the increase in the likelihood of injuring oneself while sleeping.


Why can’t I turn my head this morning?

Voluntary Recall

So, I admit to not watching the news over the past week.  I was dismayed to find my Bi Lo has voluntarily recalled their jalapeños.  I did not voluntarily agree to this.

I am quite concerned that today’s purchase of the inferior chiles will render an inferior bacon and cream cheese experience.

Want the Good News or Bad News

Good news.

I remembered this morning, before the heat of day.

Bad news.

I left two gallons of milk in the trunk overnight.  Hey, I had four kids and sundaes distracting me.


I let my prescription for migraines run out, bad move on my part.  Yesterday I was knocked on my butt and could not get ahead of the pain with my usual coping mechanisms.  I ended up at my doc’s office where I received a shot that he warned would make me a little woozy.

I knew I was a little out of it last night, but sometimes you just muddle through what you have to.

Tim called to check on me and I remembered I had set the phone down to answer the door when I heard angry beeping signalling the phone was off the hook.

This morning is like a scavenger hunt, only I don’t know what I’m looking for.  I opened the fridge to find most of the items I used to make last night’s popcorn.

I wonder what other surprises today holds.

Splish Splash

Apparently Berkeley County Water and Sewer decided what the our household needed was a new water feature.

We did not approve of the idea.

Thankfully BCWAS will be repairing the damage.   This little mess caused over two hundred homes to be without water today.

Good times folks, good times.

Oh and if you are a neighbor of mine, we’re under a boil water advisory for the next 24 hours