Every morning of late, I stir in my bed until I feel that familiar pull on the roof of my mouth. Has someone thrown an ashtray in there? ‘What is this?’, I hiss Bellatrix Lestrange style, and with a swollen tongue and the inside of my mouth feeling akin to the skin of a cat (I’m more of a dog person truth be told), I lope to the bathroom where I douse my mouth with water while cursing into the bathroom sink, ‘this is fucked.’ Spending quality time with my head in a sink or a toilet helps to keep my thrilling life real. So just like I owned the word ‘vulva’ in my TEDx talk, I’m going to own ‘thrush’. I’m full of it. In my mouth, anyway. The treatment I had for that rabid sinus infection/sepsis has totally
fucked ruined the natural balance of my system.
It could be worse. I could have it elsewhere (I don’t), but OH, MY MOUTH. It feels as though its covered in another skin. A skin I need to shed. It actually hurts and most days, my mouth bleeds. I have red welts in the corners of my lips, which coupled with my pallid skin make me look decidedly ill. The main risk factors for thrush are the use of antibiotics, diabetes, corticosteroids and a dry mouth. As usual, I have all sides covered and in spades. Antibiotics (two weeks of IV’s) – tick. Diabetes (infection markers and a steroid pulse have made my sugars go berserk) – tick. Corticosteroids (just had a pulse) – tick. Dry mouth (from anti-rejection medication) – tick.
TICK TICK TICK TICK.
It’s incredible what antibiotics can do to your system. They heal and they harm. My skin – usually clear, glowing and baby soft – is beyond dry and is making my body ache. It is itchy and I have little raised weals peppering my arms and legs. I have a whole bunch of new skin tags on my neck that I want to scratch off and I have what feels like acne on my chin, which feels very odd because I never, ever had it at school and I get maybe one zit a year (something had to go my way). I don’t feel like myself. At all. The right side of neck is sore from where my CV line was, thanks to the doctor who basically performed CPR on my neck when he forced the catheter in. I have a giant haematoma, which is a solid swelling of clotted blood under the tissues where the catheter was so roughly inserted, my skin from where the dressing was has blistered and is nicely inflamed, and I’m waking up during the night in pain. Sexy. Oh, yes.
So today I bought up big at the green grocer and the health food shop. Oranges, apples, celery, zucchini, lemons and ginger. I’m slugging back lemon, ginger and honey water (it’s not tea. Anyone who says it’s tea is bullshitting you) like a thirsty unicorn; I bought the strongest zinc supplement I could find, and next week I’m going to see a naturopath who will try and bring my body back to some sort of pre-sepsis balance. Back to unremarkable. Because unremarkable is where I’m comfortable at.
Sometimes the aftermath of an infection can be worse than the infection itself, and while I’m not saying that this is true now, I’d really love to celebrate my seventeenth Transplanniversary thrush free. So – who wants a Transplanniversary pash? 😛