What is up with my prolonged absences? Are there still people out there reading this? If so, wow. God bless you underappreciated gluttons for punishment for continuing to check my blog. I love you, truly I do.
Remember how I told you I was traveling for business a couple of weeks ago? Well, it was the trip from hell. FROM HELL. Let me tell you the many reasons why. First, my trip to Ohio, by way of the always-convenient O’Hare airport, was extended because our flight from Chicago to Columbus was cancelled. Since I couldn’t get on another flight that night on any airline from O’Hare, my only option was to take a $65 cab to Midway airport and take a Southwest flight from there. We ended up arriving, oh, about five hours later than planned.
Then, on my second day in Ohio, I woke up terribly dizzy and had the lovely experience of running out of an important business meeting to hurl. After that I felt better. I was still dizzy, but maintaining. I figured the dizziness must be pregnancy-related and figured I’d just ask my doctor about it at my next appointment, which was scheduled for the day after I got back.
The next day I was happy to be on my way home. Still dizzy, but happy that I would soon be back in great California weather instead of in the humid thunderous Midwest. Things had to be looking up. BUT NO.
This time, I was routed through Dallas. Upon arriving at DFW, my connecting flight was, guess what, CANCELLED. Again. I got on another flight scheduled to take off three hours later, which meant that I could now complete my tour of America’s airports, read every magazine published in the month of August and eat another meal at McDonalds.
I finally got home Thursday afternoon. In case you’re counting: still dizzy.
When I woke up Friday morning, I could not even focus my eyes, so fast was the world spinning around me. I was so dizzy I couldn’t keep food down. I threw up six times in an hour and a half. I had my OB appointment that morning and somehow got dressed and drove myself there. Possibly at great risk to myself and every other driver on the road.
My doctor took one look at me and said I needed to go to the ER for IV fluids. I’m not sure if it was the sunken eyes, the broken blood vessels all over my face from the violent vomiting, or what, but she knew I was not well and needed to be rehydrated.
I spent all day at the ER hooked up to the fluids. The only way I felt even remotely ok was if I was lying completely still and not moving my head. Finally after all the tests had been run, they told me I had vertigo probably caused by an inner ear infection (and also a bladder infection, but that was just an extra bonus). They gave me antibiotics, anti-nausea medicine and a prescription for Antivert, a drug that is supposed to make you less dizzy but that I subsequently learned is the most ineffective medication ever manufactured. They said the dizziness would eventually go away but that I would probably be pretty non-functional for a few days.
That turned out to be the understatement of the year. “Non-functional” hardly comes close to describing my condition over the next few days. I lay still on my bed or on the couch, being waited on hand and foot by my husband and the parade of family members who came over to help with Evan and heat up soup for me. I had a hard time reading or watching TV even, because I couldn’t focus my eyes and the room spun around like crazy.
Finally after three days, I could sit up for longer periods of time and walk around the house some. I looked like a drunk person, but I was moving. I still was afraid to drive or take a shower (so you could imagine I was looking GOOD). I had to stay home from work all of last week as I recovered. I did not leave my house for a solid week.
Finally my doctor referred me to an ear, nose and throat specialist and I got in to see him last Friday afternoon. By then I was still dizzy, but much more functional. I believe at that point I actually attempted to apply concealer to my face before leaving the house. Trust me, it was a big step.
The ENT did all sorts of tests and told me that I have labyrinthitis in my right ear. In layman’s terms, this is an inflammation of your inner ear that is often caused by a virus. He asked me if I had recently had a cold. Check! Yep, I had a cold after Evan got croup. Then, I flew, which didn’t help. The frustrating thing about this condition is that it just takes time to resolve itself. Your brain eventually figures out how to compensate so that the vertigo goes away – but it usually takes weeks.
Today is exactly two weeks from the day I woke up dizzy in Ohio. I’m much better now, but still often walk like a drunk person and have to lean against the wall in the shower so I don’t fall down. But let me tell you, I will never again take for granted the gift of balance. The day I wake up with no dizziness will be a cause for celebration! I will get there.
In the meantime, you’ve got to hand it to me, that’s a pretty good excuse for a lack of posting. :)