Tuesday, February 28, 2012

To Hear or Not to Hear: That is the Dilemma

See, I'm not that big a fan of going to the doctor. I don't mean just any doctor -- I mean my primary care physician. I don't mind the dentist, or the optometrist, or hell, even the Lady Doctor (for the most part). Maybe the reason I'm not a big fan is because until now, I've continued to see the pediatrician whose tie I once peed down as an infant. Yup, I'm 23, and I saw a pediatrician until now. After I was there over the summer for a quick TB test for my teaching job, they were like, Maybe it's time you start seeing a doctor for adults... Geez, cut me a break, okay? I only go when I have to, anyway!
I remember when I was much younger and I'd need to go for strep tests or bronchitis, or even one time for a jammed finger, they'd make me wait in what was labeled the Sick Waiting Area. Uhhh... Gross. Capital G. All those germs floating around, and even the more sickly looking turtles in the Sick Waiting Area tank, stigmatized the PCP's office forever for me as a place to either get worse, or to get sick if you weren't in the first place.

My parents are strongly encouraging me to see a doctor at my campus's health center, or locate a Patient First. I hate the idea of both. I don't have a fear of seeing the doctor; I just have a preference not to. Just to clarify, I also don't need someone to tell me to go to the doctor when I'm unwell; I'm just stubborn.
As someone who has flown many times, I know that Sunday's multiple flights to Mexico will not be pleasant with clogged nasal passages and stopped up ears. Several Spring Breaks ago, the Lew Crew flew to St. Petersburg, FL, for some fun in the sun. I hadn't been sick before the trip, but I unexpectedly burst an eardrum on the flight there. The air pressure made things miserable, and I couldn't hear much out of my left ear for about a week. Before that trip, I had always thought that if you burst your eardrum, you'd be deaf. I learned that you will not, in fact, go deaf, but you will be temporarily hard of hearing and in a fair amount of pain as your eardrum regenerates itself.

You'd think that my mind would be made up -- off to the doctor I should go! I'm actually still debating about this situation. Today is worlds different than yesterday. I have an appetite, I slept 10 uninterrupted hours, I could breathe all night long and this morning, my throat isn't sore, and my stuffy head is greatly reduced. I'd like to think that this improvement is due to my strategic combo of soup for dinner, an abundance of cough drops, Chloraseptic, Ibuprofen, Kleenex, rest, Dayquil, and a melatonin tablet. I'd also like to think, in my naively hopeful way, that things will have made another 90-degree turn to One Hundred Percent Better Town by Sunday. Call me what you will, but I'm reluctant to start a course of antibiotics that may alter my sleeping patterns or my alcohol consumption. As my mom would say, "the other side of the coin is," I'll be in a foreign country with a weakened immune system. I've gotten myself into quite the pickle here.
French Onion, brown rice, and Black Cherry Jell-O made for the perfect dinner last night.

Today, I'm on the hunt to stock up on Sudafed, cough drops, and melatonin. The pharmacy with which Mom supplies me every year has run a little dry, and some of the meds have even expired because I haven't been sick in so long. I'm also on the hunt for the right decision... But I don't think I'll be able to find that at Kroger...

If you have any suggestions or remedies for something like a bad cold right before leaving the country, please send them my way!

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