Monday, June 28, 2010

A P.S. on the Health

Also, I had the privilege of needing a consult with a GI specialist too (I won't go into the details of why)....Now, I'm scheduled for a colonoscopy.

Do you know what that means? I had No. Freaking. Idea. The madness involved with prepping for this procedure. Seriously shoot me now because I'm pretty sure I'll want to hand myself halfway through all the prep steps. Hubby has suggested I go stay with my mother during the 24 hour fasting and "cleansing" period. So much for "in sickness and in health."

Oh, and my consult with the neurosurgeon is tomorrow morning. Let's cross our fingers for the no-neck-surgery option, mmk?

Still the USA!

Ack...I'm behind in posting all the details of our trip back to the US and the Great Sicknesses of 2010, so here goes.

As it turned out, I ended up in the ER in Doha before we left because the pain in my neck was so severe. The regular doctor wouldn't see me because he knew I needed a specialist, so he referred me to the orthopedic doctor. The orthopedic doctor did a new x-ray and decided I should see a neurosurgeon. He also suggested I'd be a good candidate for neck surgery, but not the disk fusion kind...Honestly, I was in too much pain to understand/remember what the details of the surgery he was explaining. I got very little relief because apparently they don't care to follow the treatment that has always worked for me in previous episodes (steroid treatment combined with pain meds).

As if this wasn't enough (happening just days before our trip), the morning we boarded the plane Eliza said she wasn't feeling well. Hmm. She looked fine, she'd eaten breakfast, so we didn't think much about. Before the first 4 hours of the flight were over, Eliza was getting feverish and Amelia started having green goo oozing out of her eyes. Evidently she wasn't over her sinus infection. Luckily, I'd packed the antibiotic eyedrops--just in case--and we started giving them to her in-flight. Eliza proceeded to get worse, saying that she felt like she was going to puke. I could feel her fever getting higher and higher, despite the Tylenol. She basically slept on and off the whole 14 hour flight. I had no idea how sick she was...

Once we got to DC, we landed, got our luggage, got our rental minivan, went to my uncle's house, ate a quick dinner, then headed to the urgent care clinic, where Eliza was diagnose with strep throat (super positive reading) and an ear infection! She looked awful as of Friday evening. Antibiotics, however, are clearly miracle drugs because she was 10 times better the next morning.

Saturday morning we headed for Ocean City, NJ. The drive took longer than expected, but we made it just in time for dinner. Hubby's mom was grilling out, so he and the kids ate, played with cousins, and visited while I made the trip to the grocery store to stock our beach house. Speaking of the beach house---perfect :) Small, but typical for most of the property at the shore. Just enough space for us to eat, sleep, bathe, etc. The rest of our time would be spent at the beach or the boardwalk. Despite some minor lingering pain in my neck, I couldn't pass up the first morning's opportunity to take a jog in the beautiful sunshine. Mild temperatures and perfectly-landscaped yards made it all seem like something out of a TV show. Really and truly, I fell in love with the place. I basically spent the next 6 days thinking about how in the world we could ever afford to own property there. Everyone had a great time shopping, eating, visiting with family, and soaking up the sun, sand, and the waves. When Thursday came, I didn't want to leave!

We headed to Home State on Friday, only to find out that our short-term corporate house wasn't going to be ready for another 5 days. A long story, but we stayed with my parents until it was ready for us to settle in, and here we are. We've been here since last Wednesday, and everything's going well. I was able to get Eliza into a great swimming lesson program that includes arts & crafts time, story time, and a snack. Hubby and I are taking turns using the public library as our makeshift office, and there's a great park and aquatic center very close to our house! We joined a local YMCA, where they also offer childcare, so we've been able to get some much-needed exercise in, while the girls have some play time outside of the house-- a win-win situation indeed :)

The only inconvenience right now is that I still have a few minor corrections to make on my dissertation manuscript. Initially I had a TON of corrections to make, for I am evidently the Sloppiest Dissertation Writer in the History of the World (SDWinHOW). True story. I'm now down to three corrections: 1) revise my abstract, 2) change the long quotes from plays, 3) and get page numbers for plays from the collected editions I used. Don't ask me why I didn't have this last one finished before I left Qatar....clearly I was out of my damn mind because the 7 volume collection of Aphra Behn's plays that are edited by Janet Todd??? Yeah, they're not really available at your local public library or local bookstore. I'm going to make a run to the nearest R1 library, where they have at least 2 of the volumes. If I need the others, then I'll have to see if I can get ILL privileges somehow.

Anyway, once I get these corrections made, then I'll feel like I have some breathing room, and I can move on to revising the article and researching the piece for the collection I'm submitting to in September. I also need to somehow make the latter fit into one of the ASECS panels for 2011.

Yeah, I'm kinda hoping that at some point we'll get more than one 6-day vacation in a year.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Of course I'd Get Sick!

Yes, that makes perfect sense....Only me. I am sick just days before we leave for the U.S.

It's day 3 now of what started as a regular head cold. Except that today brought back the neck pain that's associated with my disk problems. So, on top of being stuffy and coughing, I can barely move my head/neck, and it hurts to even walk. I still have to teach class this afternoon...

I don't want to go to the doctor for all sorts of reasons. The hospital I prefer to use requires payment up-front. If it were just the office visit, no problem. But, once they hear all about the degenerative disk issues, I fear they'l want x-rays, scans, etc., which will rack up the charges, and I'm not interested in fronting the money for.

If I go to the state-sponsored hospital, it's virtually free, but there's no telling how long I'll have to wait, and I believe I won't get any relief. Granted, this belief is based on my one prior visit. I had pulled a muscle in my lower back, and I was given a prescription for the same muscle relaxers I already had at home. No help. I'm in serious pain now, and I have no reason to believe the doctor at the state-sponsored hospital will do anything more than he/she did the last time.

OMG I wish we were back home! This would be so much easier to deal with... I just need to make it to Friday *without* making myself worse.