Monday, August 04, 2008

Why FWG is like your roof

The gown is soft. I like it. I'd kind of like to keep it. Except it ties in the back. Rather awkward.

I'm watching the shoes move back and forth out there in the land beyond the curtain, and listening to the voices following them around. The curtains look new. You can see a lot of creases in them still. Curious set of patterns on the curtains. There are six repeating images. Two are botanical; two astronomical and two geometrical. Very hodge-podgey. I'm irked by its themelessness. There's a single blemish; a carrot-shaped stain. The human body produces dozens of different fluids. I wonder which is responsible for this?

Somewhere distant a baby is screaming. Not crying. Screaming. This baby is seriously pissed.

I pick up pieces of a strange conversation. "You know what she does? She kicks cats! And she pushes old ladies down escalators!"

"That's not true! I pinch old ladies. And I kick babies!"

I swear, that's what they said.

In the next compartment a woman occasionally gasps. Her intermittent cramps are getting worse. Someone, a doctor or nurse, enters her space and moves back and forth, assisting her in some way while brushing against the curtain before me. If I were a cat I'd be swatting the heck out of this person.

Finally Doc enters my pen, looking at the notes they'd taken at reception. She puts me in the blood-pressure cuff, slaps a pulse-monitoring doo-dad on my index finger and slips a thermometer under my tongue. She shines a light in my ear. The nurse had already done these things earlier - along with taking a blood sample. I hate giving blood. It's painful. No - not the needle. That's a breeze. It's the goddam tape they use to hold the gauze over your tiny puncture wound. When I rip that tape off later it takes my arm hairs with it.

I have a slight fever and my BP is very high. We discuss my long list of symptoms.

"I'm going to untie you," she says, "So I can check your shoulder."

"Your going to hate the knots I put in it."

"I see that."

She checks my shoulder and neck and pokes about in my hair with her light.

"I hate to tell you this but these aren't hives."

"They're not?"

"No. They're shingles."

"I've got shingles?”

“You sure do.”

Since the previous doctors at the walk-in-clinic failed to make the diagnosis, the window for treatment has expired. She explains the kind of pain I should expect.

“I’m already getting that,” I assure. “It’s manageable.”

She shakes her head slowly; ruefully. It’s the kind of expression that can only mean one thing: ‘It’s gonna get worse.’

“It’s gonna get worse,” she says.

“I knew you were going to say that.”

All she can do is prescribe more drugs to try to keep me comfortable. She issues me Percocet for the pain and some damn thing called Amiabletrampoline or something like that. I presume it’s to keep me friendly and bouncy.

I’m going to be home-bound for a while.


Dave said...

so then, so far you have infected the barber's comb and subsequent people he's served, the patrons at Starbucks, and young Nicholas. Is there no end to your treachery?
Hope you're feeling better soon. More importantly, will this be over and done with by August 23??? I'd hate to have to force you to sleep in a tent outside all by yourself. Is this stuff contageous?

Anonymous said...

OH NO!! Shingles? Oh I am sorry, that really sucks. I truly hope you feel better soon FWG.

Anonymous said...

I just missed you lol.. Yes I take my kids to the library. Leah tears it apart before we get to have any fun lol.

Sukhaloka said...

Wow.. shingles. That's bad. Get better soon, and keep cool!

Fantasy Writer Guy said...

It's contageous but with many limitations I'm not interested in detailing at this time. The only one who should have been infected was the I.S. following much intimacy the day before I was finally diagnosed properly. Miraculously the young and healthy immune system did its job and he's fine.

AT this point I am over it other than some residual tenderness where the sores were.