It had been a lovely evening, and DB (Da Boyfriend) and I were settling down to bed for the night.
I should have known something was about to happen. Doolittle was on the bed, his paw pouncing around, his eyes intently focused and his nose sniffing around. I looked, but found nothing. I decided it must be one of those hallucinatory episodes that cats fall prey to every now and then. Like, you know, when they sit and stare at a blank wall for ten minutes.
But I was sitting on the edge of the bed, finishing up an ice cream sandwich. I turned my head to say something to DB, and I saw something black on my right shoulder. My bare right shoulder, naked and vulnerable... with an SOSS (Spider of Significant Size) sitting there, bold as brass, just looking back at me with his beady little eyes.
I shrieked. I jumped off the bed, screaming, “Get it off! Get it off!” as I danced like no one was watching.
DB: “What? What’s wrong?”
Me: “Spider! Is it still on me? I can’t see my back--”
I twirled like a dervish, slapping myself all over, brushing imaginary arachnids off my thighs and head and anywhere I could reach.
DB: “Honey, I think it’s gone-”
Me: “You think? Thinking isn’t good enough! Do you see it? Where did it go?”
Me (still brushing): “What ‘wow’?”
DB: “I had no idea your voice could reach that octave.”
Me: “It’s not funny!”
DB: “Are you scared of spiders?”
The monumental stupidity of what he had just said momentarily distracted me from the fear that the spider was still on me somewhere. He’d said it before, the last time a spider fell on me while we cleaned out my patio closet.
Me: “Yes, I’m afraid of spiders! Everybody is afraid of spiders!”
I began frantically tearing the comforter and sheets off the bed.
DB: “Oh, come on. You are never going to find it.”
Me: “I’m not trying to find it. I’m trying to make sure where it isn’t! You can’t possibly expect me to get back in that bed and try to sleep without making sure it’s not still in bed?”
DB sighed, climbed out of the bed, and began dutifully shaking the twenty-seven pillows I sleep with.
Suddenly, I saw the little bastard, strolling nonchalantly across the carpet at my feet. I shrieked again.
Me: “There he is! There he is!”
Me (pointing frantically): “There! Right there! Get him!”
DB: “Well, hand me something to smash him with.”
Me (throwing a box of Kleenex at him): “Hurry up! Before he gets away!”
DB: “He’s not getting away. There’s no where for him to go.”
Me: “Spiders are crafty bastards! They’re like Houdini. They can always disappear into a crack or something!”
DB bent over and pinched the spider between the tissue as I just stood there shuddering. As he walked past me to the bathroom, he opened the tissue and displayed a tangle of little black legs.
DB: “Oh, look! It’s got a red hourglass on its belly--”
Me (blood draining from every part of my body): “Really?”
DB (grinning): “No, just kidding--”
Me (slapping him on the shoulder): “That’s not funny!”
DB: “Actually I think it’s a brown recluse.”
DB: “I thought you had a catch-and-release policy about spiders? Good for the environment and all that. What happened to not giving in to the ignorant bias against these poor, misunderstood, multi-legged creatures?”
Me (remaking the bed): “Hey, I have a very specific understanding with the spiders. They leave me alone, I leave them alone. And this one broke the pact. He launched an aggressive incursion onto my personal body-- Stop laughing at me!”
DB: “You know, they say a person swallows eight spiders a year while they sleep--”
Me: “That’s an urban myth.”
DB: “Are you sure? My brother woke up once and found a spider leg in his mouth--"
Me: “SHUT UP!”
POST SCRIPT: Later that night I went to the bathroom. Flipped on the light, and there was another spider, sitting on my sink. He died tragically.
Something has been wrong with my right arm over several days, now, but yesterday, for some reason, I woke up in greater than usual pain, and it just kept getting worse. By around 1 pm, I started crying. At my desk. At work. I'm sniveling.
And nothing helped. Not ice, not the brace, not the four Aleve, six tylenol or eight Advil taken in the course of eight hours. Not the first hydrocodone. Nor the second.
The third hydrocodone, however, taken around 9 pm, put me to sleep, which was all I was praying for at that point, assuming that a swift and merciful death was out of the question.
At some point I called the hand specialist my GP had referred me to on Monday, and begged to be seen as soon as possible.
Today at 3 pm, I saw him. The visit was mainly comprised of the doctor poking and pressing and thumping and asking, "Does that hurt?"
His diagnosis? "Probably tendonitis, and probably carpel tunnel, but we'll have to send you somewhere else for THAT test."
After he suggests all the stuff that any moron without a medical degree would guess, which happens to be the stuff I'm already trying (rest, ice, braces, anti-inflamatories), I ask him, "Is that it? That's all you can suggest when I'm in such pain I can't hold anything, I can't sleep, I can barely fill out your freakin' 20 pages of forms?"
"Well, I could give you a cortisone shot. Wanna try that?"
Of course, I said yes.
As he prepares the syringe, he smiles and says, "You're not gonna like me much later tonight."
"I don't like you very much right now," I say, flexing the hand that he has set to throbbing again with all his probing. "What happens tonight?"
"Well, once this lidocaine I'm spraying on your elbow wears off," he grins (I swear, he grinned!), "your elbow is gonna hurt a lot until the cortisone kicks in, probably tomorrow."
Before I can tell him to get the hell away from me, he says, "Okay, here's a little stick."
Yes, there is a little stick. Not too bad. I sigh in relief.
Then he says, "Okay, now you're gonna feel some pressure."
OMIFREAKINGOD, SOME PRESSURE? No, asshole, this is not SOME PRESSURE! This feels like someone is trying to shove a kabob skewer through my elbow. Perhaps it was just my imagination but I swear I felt metal scraping against bone. And it just goes on!
The "pressure" continues until I am gasping and trying to curl into a fetal position, stopped only because he has my right arm held down on the table. I think I may have used the F bomb. More than once. IT HURT. VERY MUCH.
It's also possible I hissed at him.
"And I'm trying to make it bleed a little," the sadistic bastard tells me. "That will help the healing process."
SERIOUSLY? How about screaming? Does that help the healing process? What about smacking the living daylights out of the doctor? Should I try that and find out?
Finally it is over. I stagger out of there with a bruise forming on my elbow around a red puncture mark.
And as he predicted so glibly, it is beginning to hurt. I have taken one hoarded hydrocodone, and will probably take another one in a few minutes before I go to bed.
Damn it, another doctor bill piles up for no real new information, no significant help. Maybe the cortisone will help, but I won't know for a while.
I LOVE THE WEB
Because nobody can interrupt me; they can only de-friend me.