Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Conference Woes

So, Jeff had come down with something really nasty last Monday night, and was incapacitated Tuesday, and barely functional Wednesday. I had hoped to avoid it, but no such luck.

Even my constitution of steel (if I were a D&D character, I'd have a score of 18) was no match for this virus. I woke up early Thursday morning to the most painful sore throat in the history of the universe. Then, as the day progressed, I felt worse and worse until by Thursday afternoon I had a fever of 101.5 F. In addition, the sore throat had been replaced by horrible head and bronchial congestion. I went back to the hotel and skipped the Thursday evening event entirely. I didn't sleep well at all and missed Friday altogether. Luckily nothing much was going on at the conference and Jeff just went in and moved a couple of signs for me.

I suddenly realized that I would have to travel the next day, which in my state, did not seem like a good idea. So I called my dad and bonus mom and asked for their advice. Their advice: seek medical treatment (oh yeah, what a great idea!), so I called the hotel's front desk and asked if they could tell me the location of the nearest urgent treatment center. Instead they suggested that they could call the house doctor for me. He could come and look at me in my hotel room. Sold!

So, I got my first-ever doctor housecall, which was mighty convenient, let me tell you, although not particularly cheap ($150). A wet dishrag had more going for it than I did at that point. The doctor told me that I did not have the flu (I was missing a few of the symptoms associated with the actual influenza virus), but I had some kind of virus and an ear infection. He wrote me some prescriptions for antibiotics and pseudoephedrine (in Oregon it is available by prescription only!) and my wonderful husband went and got them filled for me. The doctor said I'd probably be okay to travel the next morning, but to wear a mask so as to minimize transmission of the virus.

He was right. The fever broke that night and I was actually able to get some sleep before our 6:30 am flight. I wore the mask, and got some dirty looks from other passengers despite the fact that I was the passenger least likely to spread disease thanks to the mask. The descents before landing were fairly painful on my ears but I chewed a lot of gum in a semi-successful attempt to reduce the pressure in my ears.

Dad brought Vinny to the airport to pick us up. He was really happy to see us, and simultaneously intrigued and confused by the mask. He had grown that week, both in size and cognitive ability. His sentences are getting longer and longer and more complicated in meaning. I know he had a great time with his grandparents and I am very grateful to them for generously agreeing to take care of him for nearly 10 days!

We spent the night at Dad and Marvis' house before heading home the next day. I was still sick enough that I stayed home from work yesterday but went in today. The people at work were happy to see me until they heard my horrible cough. But I did what I could to avoid coughing on them and just get some work done.

It's great to be back home. Getting sick far from home is No Fun. I plan to use the four-day weekend to recover, especially so that I can go on my next trip the week after next -- back up to the QC to see and help take care of my sister, her better half, and my soon-to-be nephew, who will be born on or before December 3! I'm taking a week off work so that I can help them adjust to life with a newborn. I'm really honored that they asked me to come up and help them make that transition, and I hope I will be able to help out in a big way.


EcoGeoFemme said...

Boo for being sick away from home. I hope you are completely better in time for the baby!

ScienceGirl said...

I am sorry to hear you got even worse after I saw you! It is nice of you to be careful not to get others sick; I definitely appreciated it. I hope you have been better for a while now.

I hope your nephew is arriving safely soon!

Once again, it was great to see you, and I suspect we will do the same next year!