Steve Hutchison (foomf) wrote,
Steve Hutchison

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22 weeks

Pain index right now, about a 1 on the 1-10 scale. Mostly because I've been too sick.
Most of the sick came as a reaction to a funeral for a friend who died of cancer, the wife of another of our social circle from church, and a wonderful lady. I got very sick the next day and it just continued - I'm mostly over it, but I think I had a day or two where the fever did hit 103, if not the 106 I get at the worst times.

Yeah, I've had a 106 fever several times. When I was a baby, with acute choriospinal meningitis. When I was a young kid and I got toxic sepsemia (dysentery) from a backed-up sewer in the room that was the bedroom for us kids in my dad's place. When I had the measles - the hard measles - in spring of my Junior year of college. When I had severe blood poisoning (including livid red lines radiating back up to swollen golf-ball lymph nodes in the elbow!!) due to a sliver that got into my right hand in 1979. And when I had the flu that came around in 1988, which was a really NASTY year for the diseases.

If you've never had a really high fever, this is what happens.
First, everything is too cold, or too hot, at the same time.
Then, you feel really weak, and probably very hungry, but the thought of anything solid generally causes coughing or nausea. Standing is problematic, because the world wants to spin around you. Nevertheless, you should drink liquids, lots of them.
You will not want to read anything compelling, complicated, or intense, because your brain will translate it into nightmares. I happened, in 1998, to read Mercedes Lackey's "Vanyel" stories, with the last one happening JUST as I was getting into this fever. I found myself in a dream where I was forced to repeatedly solve impossible mathematical sequences in order to make a sixth-dimensional space exclude an unspeakable evil, and if I did it wrong I had to start over from the beginning. The entire world around me was breaking down into basic shape-elements, as my visual system overheated. It would have been entertaining if it didn't feel so horrible.
Finally, you'll find yourself actually sleeping, but from experience I can tell you that it helps immensely to have someone you love by your side, stroking your brow with a cool cloth.
I wasn't so good with the cool cloths as Penny was. She claimed I got them soaking wet and then splatted them down on her forehead. I sort of did, I guess.

As caregivers go, she was much better than I was.

I went through some of my gmail conversations with her, first reading her gmail account. The last things she read were sent just after Christmas - she wasn't comfortable with the laptop on her abdomen so didn't read her gmail - and I found a reminder that I'd called her mother to tell her about the cancer apparently returning on the 11th of December.
The conversations in mail were in our own private code to one another - pet names, the occasional shorthand, intimacies that were too trivial and too private to be used with strangers. So I probably won't post them, at least, not for general viewing.

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