Wednesday, October 28, 2009

No WONDER they scream and pull their ears!

Hey there. I haven't written in a while. Why, you ask? Could it be because the kitchen project we optimistically started two weekends ago has taken over our entire lives and turned our little house into a national disaster area? Is it because my job has sucked me completely dry, and I can barely muster the energy to channel surf, let alone get on the computer and write at the end of the day, even if I was sharp enough to think of something interesting to say? Or, did the nonstop energy of my two little boys finally drive me into a temporary coma? None of the above, although all three are basically true. No, the reason I haven't written is because, for the first time in my life (or, at least, the first time I remember), I had an ear infection.

If you've ever had an ear infection, you are nodding your head up and down vigorously in empathy, and your eyes are watering at the very memory of the excrutiating pain you experienced. Yes, there is a reason our little ones with ear infections cry nonstop, cannot be soothed by any of the usual means, won't eat, can't sleep, and do everything they can to claw their ears right off of their heads. Ear infections hurt like you wouldn't believe! I seriously thought my head was going to burst open on one side, sending the offending ear flying across the room and spilling brains all over my living room carpet. It was so, so bad. Like labor, but in your ear. So, on Saturday afternoon, as I lay curled up in the fetal position on the couch, my hands grasping my head in an attempt to keep it from flying apart, moaning, my loving husband said, "Honey, we'd better take you to the emergency room." I looked up at him from between my fingers, tears pouring down my face, and sobbed, "Are you crazy?!!! We are NOT going to the emergency room! It's a seventy five dollar co-pay. I can wait until Monday!" Did the love of my life accept my answer? Not quite. He found a walk-in clinic that was still open, put me in the car, and drove me there. Then, in order to spare me the ordeal of trying to keep it together in front of my worried little boys -- a battle I was clearly losing, anyway -- he told me to call his cell when I was done, and he took Spencer and Foster to the playground to burn off some energy. My hero!

Luckily for me, the clinic wasn't packed full of people wondering if their cough was actually the Swine Flu. In fact, I was the only patient, so they got me in pretty quickly. The lovely young doctor, who looked like she could've been one of my middle school students only a couple of years ago, took out the thingie doctors use to check your ears and took a look. As I tried to avoid actually piercing through the denim of my jeans with my fingernails at the intense pain this caused, she clucked her tongue and said, "Oh, honey. We're going to get you some vicodin right away." As it turns out, I didn't technically have an ear "infection", although she said the symptoms are the same. No, I have something called an ear "effusion", which means that, instead of my inner ear being packed full of pus, it's packed full of mucous (Gross, huh?), causing my ear drum to bulge out, resulting in tremendous pain in the ear, as well as the head, jaw, and neck. The treatment? Decongestants, pain management (Thank you, vicodin!), and time. So, I got to spend the rest of the weekend hopped up on pain meds, semi-conscious, just waiting for things to get better. It's taken five days, but I'm finally starting to feel more like myself. I couldn't take the pain pills at work, of course (A school counselor on narcotics? Not such a great idea.), so it's been a long, long haul this week. And, it's only Wednesday...

What's the lesson in all of this? Well, my advice would be this: If your pediatrician tells you your children have ear infections -- give those little ones anything they need or want to feel better. Lavish them with love and affection. Take them to the dollar store and let them pick out five things that will make them smile. Let them eat nothing but their favorite foods, even if that means ice cream three times a day. Jump through any hoop to take their minds off of the pain. Because the poor little kids are in agony. Truly. I've been there... Cheers!

8 comments:

  1. "Like labor, but in your ear."

    Ow. Just...ow. And you went to work?!

    I'm so sorry for you! This fall seems to be wreaking havoc on everyone's health...and it's not even November! Fingers crossed for a healthier winter for us all! I hope you're feeling much, much, much better soon!

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  2. I hope you're feeling better. I've had a lot of earaches recently but didn't realize adults could get ear infections. I will definitely keep an eye on it, thanks for the heads up. And now I will definitely feel worse for my kids when they get them. Didn't realize they were quite so bad.

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  3. I get frequent ear infections just like this because I have frequent sinus infections. They really suck! It hurts! I hope your feeling much better soon!

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  4. The opioids narcotics are effective for diseases such as chronic pain partially solved, medicines like Vicodin, Lortab, oxycodone, Lorcet are widely used in USA and Europe for medical specialists according to findrxonline the percentage of use of these drugs is very high in this part of the continent.

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  5. Thanks so much for all the well-wishes, ladies. I'm feeling much, much better! Cheers!

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  6. hope you're feeling better!!!!!!!!!!

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  7. "Like labor but in your ear." Awesome! (In a literary way, not in practice...) That sucks dude. But good for your man for taking care of shit and not waiting til Monday!

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