Sunday morning I woke up in quite a bit of pain. My face was on fire, doing what any normal person would do I put my hand to my face. Except my face was much closer to my hand than it should have been. Still groggy, I jumped out of bed and ran to the bathroom mirror.
Umm did someone lodge a softball in my mouth? WTF is this!
I clearly had an abscess, and it had its own zip code. Vanity coming into play and, of course, the massive heartbeat coming from my cheek convinced me to go to the hospital.
When I walked into emergency, it seemed clear the admission nurse knew why I was there. Could it be that my cheek happened to look as though I had stuffed a full bag of marshmallows into it?
It didn’t take long for me to see a doctor. Apparently they do not take infections so close to the brain lightly. Within an hour, I had been given a lecture about why I should be more aware of tooth pain. And a needle the size of a horse tranquilizer into my hip. I left with a prescription for antibiotics and of course things to watch out for in the next few days.
I went on with my life as usual which brings me to the next stage of this tooth pained tale. Two days later I found myself arriving home from work with massive neck pain and a fever. Hmm, two of the very things the doc at emergency told me to look out for. Without panic, I headed to the emergency just to make sure I wasn’t having a reaction to the drugs I had been prescribed.
Casually walking through the hospital doors, the admittance procedure went much differently this time. As soon as I opened my mouth to explain my symptoms I found myself on a gurney and being poked with needles. So. Many. Needles.
Holy shit what is happening, am I that sick?
Before I even had time to be the pouty princess I am ( I hate being taken care of ) I had two nurses all over me. One was strapping that hellish oxygen mask to my face and the other sticking wires to my chest. Everything was happening so fast; I was starting to panic.
No one would tell me what was happening, but I could see their faces and this shit looked serious. At one point, a nurse said something about meningitis and blood poisoning. Me being the amazing patient I am panicked and pulled off my oxygen mask. “Excuse me, can somebody talk to me.” No one answered. I thought I was going to die.
Eventually, after I seemed to be plugged into every machine in the hospital ( and after making multiple text message to friends and family ), I learned that I was septic. I would also need a spinal tap to rule out meningitis. The last thing the doctor had said before I went in for my spinal tap was “This is very serious hun, we may need to get a hold of your family.”
This, the point of no return for me. What the fuck does that even mean? I am going to die! Holy shit! My mind starts to go into overdrive and I am here to tell you, you may be shocked at what I thought.
As the drugs started to seep slowly into my blood stream and the crazy thoughts of my last moments blurred any common sense I may have had.
I will give you some of my thoughts as I lay in what seemed to be an imminent death bead. ( An over-reaction of Epic-Darla- Proportion I might add )
1) My Kids
WAIT … I am not ready to die. (Oh man, these drugs are good.) I need to see my babies, I haven’t told them all about predators and bad people. Will they know that I loved them? Crap, their rooms are a mess they will need to clean them if they are going to have people over after the funeral.
2) My Parents
WAIT … I am not ready to die. (These drugs are blurring my judgment.)
Mom and Dad, I am sorry I was such an asshole growing up. I am sorry I don’t call enough. I really do love you, and I should have told you more. Oh crap, they are going to find my sex toys when they clean out my house.
3) My Friends
WAIT … Oh, fuck it. ( I love these drugs.) I wasn’t a good enough friend. I didn’t do enough, will they really know how much I needed them. I didn’t tell them I needed them. Somebody better be there when my parents are cleaning up my room and grab those damn sex toys!
4) My Love
He doesn’t know how much I love him. He doesn’t know that all I ever wanted was him. I will not be able to say goodbye and I hope he knows that I will miss him with every single cell in my body. Shit, does he have naked pictures of me? Crap, I need my friends to take care of that!
5) My Funeral
They better not have a big funeral, they know I hate people crying right? This better be a party of epic proportions, shit I am going to miss it. WAIT .. I don’t want to die.
6) My Mortality
WAIT I DON’T WANT TO DIE! Too many things have been left unsaid. I haven’t had the chance to be the person I was becoming. MY KIDS! MY KIDS! MY KIDS! I won’t see them graduate, get married and become adults. Have I told everyone how much they meant to me? Will they know that I cared so deeply for them?
As I slowly fell into a drug-induced sleep, my mind thought of love and what I hadn’t done. What I should have, could have and would have said to all the people that have touched my life. My heart was breaking with thoughts of lost connections and people I needed to touch.
Waking up to find I hadn’t died (and that I was going to be able to hide my sex toys better) something had changed in me. The fear of death ( and amazing drugs ) made me realize I have to be better to myself, love myself and all of those around me with every piece of my heart. Every day for the rest of my life.