Being sick sucks big sick sucky things!

Posted in Hike '07 at 5:47 pm by segue

How can something as tiny as a tip of a pin do so much damage?

I am compelled to write and try to catch up with what has been going on. Even though I am not currently on trail. I came off the trail July 14th with my nephew, we got picked up in Cornwall Bridge, Ct. on Saturday afternoon. I had good intentions of taking care of business, restocking, preparing food drops with my sister and getting right back into the swing of things.

only a few days missed…

That turned into a week. All week I felt very tired, my knees and hips were getting more sore off trail then they had been while I was lugging a pack up and down mts. I was sleeping a lot and not packing food or getting anything ready. On Thursday night my mom came home very sick after work. She works around lots of young kids who are like little germ machines. Friday I took her to see the doctor and drove her to get her scripts filled. Saturday after sleeping all day I went to my sisters house and spent four hours cutting her yard, the first cut of the year. Weeds had turned into trees, there were some very scary alien looking swamp growths. Plus pits dug in her back yard to catch things that go bump in the night and keep her safe. She calls them “ponds”. Sunday I went back to her house just to give myself a case of Nuclear poison ivy like I didn’t get enough on the trail. Now my right arm is covered with this alien looking bubbly stuff that looks like at any moment could hatch.

Monday night I started to feel drained of energy and feverish. Oh great I haven’t been sick in years and now I caught what mom had. By Wednesday night I felt like death, high fever 104-105º and what felt like a sinus headache. By Thursday I couldnt move between the headache and the fever. To the doc I went. Not that I don’t like doctors but I would much rather see if my body can heal itself before I just give in and start taking chemicals.

There is something about me and doctors, I have this ability to make them flinch and scratch their heads a lot. I show up at the doc with a 104.2º fever bad sinus headache, sore joints and mussels. Not to mention the alien arm thing going on. Walk back to his exam room on my own. Doc Goodwin checks me over looks in all the doc places, stands back and says “If I didnt know you had that fever I wouldnt think anything was wrong with you.” “You look fine. Most people that come in here with a fever like that would be laid out on the floor.” He says. I shrugged my shoulders, what can I say I am an enigma. Here comes the head scratching part. Doc said “It just doesn’t make sense if I didn’t know better I’d think you had Lyme Disease.” He knew I had been hiking the trail. I said let me show you something then, as I showed him the red mark on my upper left thigh I had noticed the day before.

What you got there is a bulls eye. You have Lyme disease. Welcome to the club. After a few instructions and a script for fifteen days of doxycycline off I go on my merry way. Now, having talked to several people on the trail, and witnessed Carpenter take his very first dose of doxycycline, within a few minutes he could already feel it working on his stiff neck and mussels, I knew what to expect. Or so I thought.

My first dose… Nothing. Went to bed cold and feverish.

Woke up Friday morning covered in sweat still with my headache which had moved somewhere into the migraine region. I managed to eat a lil something so I could take my second dose hoping now that it would help me. Again, nothing, except I was noshes from the headache I got sick several times. Plus my fever was staying above 104º. Into the tub of tepid water I went soaking for over an hour, and a call to my sister who gets migraines to see if there was anything else I could do. Called mom and back to doc Goodwin I went. He looked me over still shaking his head how I’m even walking around. Well he said Im worried about that headache I think you have Lyme induced encephalitis. Umm ok blink blink. I’ll have to give you a shot. Nurse enters big syringe, long needle. bend over, expose butt, poke.

Nothing is that simple.

As Michelle and I were just at the door to leave they start yelling that Doc wants to tell me something. He has called the clinic and arranged to have my blood test. Oh and I have to have another shot 1g isnt enough. I need 2g a day for 14-21 days! Umm ok blink blink. Your kidding right?!?! And we’re closed on Sundays, do you know anyone that can give you the shots? My sister Michelle got a crash corse in butt poking with a 22ga 1.5″ needle watching the nurse give me my second dose in the left cheek and off we go. lidocaine, Ceftriaxone, and syringes in hand.

The next day mom and I show up at the doc and get the meds IV style, but that takes over an hour. Michelle did a good job on Sunday. When I went back to Doc on Monday for the poking I asked if we could just let Michelle do the rest. Sure no problem. Its easier and cheaper then having to go to the Doc every day

Fourteen days later my ass feels like its had golf balls shoved into it through a syringe every day. And not in a good way. But the symptoms have subsided. Now Im back on the Doxy for fifteen more days. Between the meds and the lyme im sleeping all the time and going stir crazy here at my parents house. I’ve been off the trail for over a month now and people I was hiking with are already in Maine close to Katahdin.

Katahdin '06
My plan is to get back on the trail and hike till the end of Sept see how far I can get this year. I know I wont make Katahdin in only four weeks but the trail becons me back.