It’s been a rough couple of days, and while I technically “posted” on my blog every day, until yesterday. And, to top it off, I haven’t really said much of anything.
I definitely meant to make another throwaway post yesterday, just to have an X on the calendar, as it were. I got into bed, next to a sleeping E, and laid my laptop on the floor to take a moment of pause, listening to the fan and the sound of his breathing. My plans turned to stardust, and I fell asleep.
So I missed a post, and I’ve been busy.
I spent most of the weekend throwing up. I thought I’d picked up a virus that was going around my Friend Family earlier that week. I slept for all of Saturday, and did a little laundry between naps. On Sunday, a college friend arrived and I was able to make some headway on my thesis while trying to clean up the apartment. I wanted to give the impression, at least, that someone other than a gremlin lived within its walls!
When various symptoms did not abate by Monday, I focused on writing and writing and writing before my thesis deadline on Tuesday night. The day was such a blur, and I slept poorly.
On Tuesday, I finished my thesis and I was almost too uncomfortable to be elated. My back hurt from sitting at my desk, I felt weak and tired, my hair was so dirty. My belly hurt, and although my symptoms were improving, they hadn’t vanished.
At my friends’ urging, I woke up on Wednesday morning as a free woman and made a doctor’s appointment for that afternoon. I tried to go out in Montmartre with my friend in the morning, and we had a good time but I was so winded and so tired. It was almost embarrassing, but I physically so weak.
We parted ways so I could make my appointment. Waiting in the doctor’s chair, I was so sore and uncomfortable. My doctor is young, energetic, and speaks fast, friendly French. I explained what was going on, and she initially thought I would be fine until she felt my stomach.
Then, she low-key panicked. I say low-key, because she obviously didn’t throw her hands to the sky and try to slice open my abdomen. We sat down at her desk, she quickly rang up the cost of my visit, while printing several sheets of paper and making notes for me.
Then, she immediately sent me to the lab down the street, with further instructions to get an ultrasound at the hospital clinic. The lab, as it turned out, wouldn’t process my results that night. I left with an appointment for Thursday morning, and called my doctor to inform her.
“Non! C’est urgent!”
She told me to walk back to the lab and make them call her. The woman at the lab’s front desk did not want to make the call, because the lab’s samples had been picked up 30 minutes before and there was nothing she could do.
That’s when I just started crying. My body hurt, my doctor’s urgency was scaring me, and I just wanted to go home but I had an entire hospital adventure ahead of me that had yet to even begin.
Tear, as it turned out, were the answer. She called my doctor, understood the situation, and gave me directions to a nearby lab who had a later pick-up time. That lab was staffed by two women about my age, who took my blood and sent me home with instructions for checking my results online.
From there, I went home, dropped off half of the paperwork, and took the other half to the clinic. Interestingly enough, it’s the clinic where E was born!
I gave my papers to the radiology desk, and waited for about an hour. When I went back into an office to see the radiologist, I waited for another 20 minutes in an air-conditioned room. Once the radiologist arrived, she tried to find my appendix, an asked me a litany of questions about what could have happened to me.
She finally decided that it was the sauce of a salad, left in the not-cold-enough fridge at my work that had probably done me in. Unfortunately, she couldn’t find my appendix and confirm that I would be OK, and then the word for surgery came up.
I panicked. Quietly, and on the inside, but I panicked. She was talking about children’s surgeons, and how there wasn’t an adult surgeon in the building and I stopped hearing her because I was thinking, “oh my god, am I having an appendicitis, alone, on a Wednesday afternoon?”
I went and sat numbly in the waiting room while she printed my results. After paying the 101 euros for the experience, I walked down the main street back toward my apartment and strongly considered having another crying-while-walking experience. They happen a few times a year in France, and you know, sometimes there’s nothing you can do.
Crying in the rue seemed like it was out of the question if I was going to have to compose myself enough to see another doctor about my appendix, and I called my mom instead. We talked, she worried, and mid-conversation I realised that I was passing my doctor’s office and the door to the courtyard was open.
At my mom’s behest, I hung up and nipped up the stairs (well, trudged, sniffling) and rang myself into the reception area. The doctor was chatting with the receptionist and nearly made “gimmie!” hands at the radiology scans. She frowned when she saw that my appendix was shy, and said that they’d wait for the blood work.
So, we waited.