Never a Dull Moment

3 Jun

So yeah, that happened. I felt like pond scum over the weekend – feverish, malaise, nausea, and like my neck was in a vice.  Leaving the apartment for an Indian food buffet almost did me in.

Then yesterday morning I woke up with a full body rash and swollen, painful lumps in my neck. Dr. ENT declared it an allergic reaction to Bactrim, my latest antibiotic (a sulfa drug). It’s not a typical allergic reaction per se but a delayed kind that strikes 7-10 days after you start the medicine. Basically, your body produces antibodies in response to foreign proteins in the drug. Those antibodies bind with the proteins and form immune complexes, which do fun things like enter your blood vessels and provoke inflammatory responses.

So I had a fun return trip to Dr. ENT.  The highlight was him sticking a creepy crawler down my nose into my throat to check on the swelling down there.  We’re hoping high-dose prednisone – a steroid – will knock it out and that we can still go forward with the tonsillectomy tomorrow.

In the meantime, Velcro the puppy goes in for his own surgery today – to get neutered. Exciting times around here!

And, sensing the brewing sh*t storm associated with having two surgery patients and my fretful Dad under one roof, dear Bojangles may finally hit the Trail again. The plan is for him to keep hiking during the next 3 weeks, likely covering the 270 miles between where got off and Harpers Ferry, WV (essentially the halfway point). I’ll meet back up with him in Harpers Ferry upon my recovery, and we’ll head north. Then, later, I can return to hike the section I missed.

But for now, I’m just trying not to go crazy.  Dr. ENT yesterday morning: “How is your breathing?  Are you breathing okay?”

Me: “Yes.  Until I think about it for too long.  I am developing a freaking anxiety disorder over all of this.  I’m going to need a referral to a psychiatrist.”

Dr. ENT: “Well at least you weren’t still on the Trail.  Then you would really have problems.”


11 Responses to “Never a Dull Moment”

  1. jack/snorz June 4, 2013 at 8:09 am #

    Sorry about all this! All this will pass & you will be up & running{hiking} again.

    • Lucie June 4, 2013 at 7:08 pm #

      Thanks, Jack (/Snorz). I hope so!!!

  2. Dave Landreth June 4, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

    Wow! I can see a new reality show on the horizon. I’ve gotta say that’s one hell of a way to lose weight though. Dang!
    I’m enjoying living with grizzlies in the Tetons for now. I’ve had a mama with 3 cubs hanging out near my camp and I spotted the second biggest griz of my life this morning right after ‘shooting’ mama and cubs near camp.
    Put those medical blue meanies behind you, lady! Katadhin is waiting!
    Here is a link to some of the griz pix that I’ve gotten so far:

    Get better!!!

    • Lucie June 4, 2013 at 7:16 pm #

      Holy CRAP! I would have CRAPPED. Those pictures are nuts! I loved reading all the info you put in the captions, too. Wow, but it looks beautiful. I’ll have to put the Tetons on my list (if I can get over the grizzlies… just seeing one might do me in).

      Stoked to get these tonsils out tomorrow and once again start inching north. Katahdin!!!

  3. mjurasius June 4, 2013 at 2:40 pm #

    You’re not kiddn’ when you say never a dull moment! You’re whole hike has been a drama…from snow storms, to bear encounters of the third kind, hiking buddy break-ups, illness, surgery…WOW! It’s cool that you are strong willed after all this, and find humor in it! I’ll be hiking into Harpers today so will miss meeting up with you. I’ve heard from a hiker named “I don’t know” that you hike fast, so who knows, you and Bo might catch up to me. I started April 14 and have to be to Katahdin about the first week of August so will increase my miles to about 30/day where it’s flat, to earn back some zeros. Good luck with the surgery and recover quickly! Happy trails!

    • Lucie June 5, 2013 at 8:24 am #

      Hey, hey!

      Yes, my life is indeed a reality show at this point. Hopefully I’ll still be finding some humor in all this today — the big surgery day! I’m a bit nervous and fully intend to ask for some Valium as soon as I walk in there.

      Oh yes, “I Don’t Know”! I spent a (very rainy) night with him at Thomas Knob Shelter in the Grayson Highlands. It would be quite the task to catch up with you — you are flying! But I do hope to run into you on a trail someday!!


  4. Fenu June 4, 2013 at 3:31 pm #

    The combination of “indian-food buffet” and “rash” made me think of more food for thought:
    Best wishes for your surgery tomorrow! I have fond memories of my tonsil surgery since it involved endless amounts of iced cream.

    • Lucie June 5, 2013 at 8:27 am #

      Haha, thanks, Fenu! I definitely plan on putting away some ice cream.

      • Fenu June 5, 2013 at 6:24 pm #

        here’s some righteous recuperation reading:
        (the best AT Journal ever)
        and an excellent current PCT Blog
        I wish that i had kept a journal of my AT hike, but at least i still have mostly good memories, and a ton of slides that have turned purple with age. Best wishes for a fast recovery (should you have your appendix out while you’re used to the pain?)

      • Lucie June 6, 2013 at 8:45 am #

        Thanks for the links! I’m checking ’em out right now. Surgery went well yesterday (decided to hold off on the appendectomy), but the pain is no joke, yo. Talked to Bojangles, who’s in the woods and sounding happy. That’ll be me soon enough!

  5. Fenu June 6, 2013 at 9:42 am #

    I’m so happy to hear that all went well with the surgery! That is great news! It might be a good time to research the most effective antibiotics for Lyme Disease and get some prescriptions for same, just in case. I also had my (first) AT hike interrupted by injury/illness and had to go home to recover for 3 weeks. I painfully discovered that boots that worked great out west didn’t work well at all on the AT. Of course, this was before magical running shoes were even invented. Best wishes on your recovery.

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