Fevers and then some

I have spent an inordinate amount of time sleeping on Jeff’s couch.

It happens without much warning. I start to feel warm. The muscles in my neck go slack. My mouth opens. Before I know it I’m drooling and snoring and making weird sleepy noises.

I think I’ve been making more noises then ever in my sleep. My throat and sinus issues have not abated and this contributes to odd moans, nose whistles and the occasional dog noise. You know what I mean. That sound dogs make that’s half way between a snort and a sneeze. A snozzle.

My health has been wavering in and out of wellness this week. I wake up feeling like death, like I slept through a fever, sweating out some sort of demon my dreams refuse to keep. I go to Bikram and continue to sweat and come out the other end of class feeling great. Wrung out. Twist. Release. Fresh blood to stagnant areas of my heart.

I made it out to Oakland for Joe’s birthday gathering and on my way back to the city I texted Jeff to see if he was still awake. I felt pretty good and had a lovely evening and wanted nothing more then to curl up under his arm and sleep for a century or two. Or at least until we got hungry. He was up and gave the green light to come over so I hopped off BART and made my way down Valencia. My ipod had died and I felt naked without it as I walked, but it was just as well.

“Man, you don’t know man…she, you know, she was…you don’t know… MAN!

“No I don’t have a quarter! And if I did homie I’d be playin’ me some Addams Family Pinball!!!”

“Dude, those are Funions and not Cool Ranch Doritos. Gross.”

“BOMBAY IS STILL OPEN!! I’M GOING TO GO IN THERE EAT THE SHIT OUT OF SOME SAMOSAS DIPPED IN SAFFRON ICE CREAM!!”

“Can I have a bite of that?”

“No. I don’t even know you.”

I don’t remember the last time I had been a part of Saturday nightlife in the Mission. It’s been forever since I’ve stood on the corner of 16th and Valencia drunkenly groaning over a slice of greasy Arinelli’s like it was the best orgasm I’d ever had in my life. Dave used to spin at Casanova’s. I’d stare at the plastic grapes hanging over the bar sipping Jameson until they closed. I had stood inside Delirium, packed body to body and spilled drinks on people just to see if they’d noticed. They never did. G. and I used to shove each other drunkenly back and forth outside Doc’s Clock.

I passed various restaurants and storefronts before turning the corner where the din of Saturday night revelry petered out into the sounds of sparse traffic.

His street is quiet. I like this. I feel like I turn a corner into a completely remote section of the city and it feels familiar. It feels close to me, personal. I like thinking that the warm dim light shining down the steps that lead up to his door are speaking to me and that no one else can the coppery gleam but me.

In 2006 I had a sleep disorder. I slept approximately four hours a week. I wanted to rip my eye balls out. My skin felt unreal. My brain had started to think itself into a deep dark hole that I was never too sure it would crawl out of. I couldn’t get comfortable in bed. I couldn’t get comfortable in my own skin. I was consistently agitated, irritable and sad. The boy I was dating at the time told me I was making all of this up in my head and I needed to relax. We didn’t last, of course. There is validating your significant other’s crazy and telling your significant other they are crazy. There is a difference.

I was okay with accepting the fact that I was not normal…I just wanted to fucking sleep already.

These days, I can’t get enough of the stuff. I worry that I have some sort of new sleep disorder. I have moved into being too comfortable. I feel safe. I can close my eyes and rest.

I loathe being sick. The consistent nose and throat issues make me feel broken, but that withstanding, he doesn’t seem to mind when I go slack and fall asleep before we’ve even thought about opening the sorbet we picked up on the way back from lunch.

Which is exactly what I did today.

I’ve been wonky and in and out of wellness at lightening speed today. I managed to make it home ok and felt pretty normal while I went about the processes of dinner and dishes. I closed all open windows and took a long hot shower. I made the shower hotter then usual. I was somewhat cold and I wanted the water scalding, which is rather easy to achieve in my building surprisingly enough. It took me 20 minutes into my shower to realize I was shivering and my teeth were chattering. It dawned on me that I was frightened to leave the hot shower as the world was a frozen tundra outside of it.

The last time I had felt this way I had a fever of 104.

Shit.

I don’t know how I made it out of the shower but I frantically dried myself off while my body shook and my hands fumbled with a robe all the while my teeth madly chattering. I ran to my bedroom and managed to pull on two pairs of socks, a pair of fleece pants, a shirt and two hoodies with hoods on. My knees were wobbly as I made my way to the kitchen and managed to pour out a couple of ibuprofen. The bottle shook in my right hand and I wondered if this was what it felt like to have Parkinson’s, the little pills shaking in the bottle sounding like a maraca.

With much effort I got the pills into my mouth and washed them down with some water. I wobbled back to the bedroom, cranked up the heat and curled up under the covers and prayed for sleep.

I woke up around 3AM with Blinky sitting on top of my chest staring down at me as sweat dripped down both sides of my face mingling with drool and pooling into the back of one of the hoods of my hoodies. She meowed and it sounded like a question.

“Are you ok?”

“I don’t know cat,” I responded. “But your chunky ass on my ribcage isn’t helping.”

I made my way to sitting and when that felt ok I made my way to standing. I peeled off one hoodie, then the next and changed my shirt I had soaked through.

Blinky meowed again at my feet.

“I’m hungry,” I told her and made my way to the kitchen to pillage.

And now it’s 4 AM and after a bowl of cereal and some fake chicken nuggets I feel like a million bucks despite some post nasal drip and the fact that I am wide awake with a brain that cannot figure out what is wrong with the rest of me.

I can hear the fog horns in the distance this late at night…this early in the morning.

I fear making another appointment with my NP lest she throw her arms up in the air exasperated at the sight of my face…again. I wonder if I should ride out the tide of this as it seems everyone I know who had come down with this illness had it for up to a month and next week it’ll have been a month for me. I long to feel normal and healthy now that I’ve accepted the fact that I am batshit crazy and can enjoy the spoils of being insane as I’ve found someone who doesn’t mind when I arrange his groceries on the table into a wedding procession diorama.

(The peaches were marrying the potatoes and the kumkwats were the witnesses while the various bags of bulk items from Rainbow were the wedding party.)

I can sleep these days but only to be randomly wrecked with fever and sweat. What is this?

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1 Response to “Fevers and then some”


  1. 1 Alicia May 18, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    Oh, hon. If it’s any consolation, I’m sick again, too. What is up with 2009?

    I say if you’re still feeling crappy by the end of Tuesday, you should see your NP on Wednesday. Take care.


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