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Houston Asthma Walk, Post #1

March 21, 2005

Hospital Trip – 2/18/2002

5:08 am

Dear Diary,
Last night, I had an allergic reaction to my dinner, or something, and had to take a trip to the emergency room. I’m fine now, but it’s the first time in my life that I’ve ever done that. 13 years of being an asthmatic, and I’ve only just now had my first hospital visit. It’s frightening. One moment I was eating dinner, and the next I wasn’t feeling hungry, and the next I couldn’t breathe. Later, I may be able to laugh about this whole thing, but right now, the pain is too fresh. My hand still shakes from the medication, the one not bandaged from the IV they had to run, and the drug’s tendency to make me hyper has gotten me up at this ungodly hour to type one handed in my diary. I suppose I’m waiting for Erin and all them to wake up so I can tell them that I’m okay. Through the whole thing, Brian was right there by my side, holding me, probably just as scared as I was. And I love him all the more for it. Love is…. wearing your girlfriend’s purse over your shoulder as she’s being hauled away on a stretcher. 🙂 That was my first sight when I got out of the ambulance. And my first laugh since that first initial pain. Brian’s roommate called my parents and everyone, so my parents showed up not long after I arrived at the hospital. Nothing like having Mommy and Daddy around to make a hospital visit easier. Now, I’m at their house, trying to get all these thoughts out of my head so I can go back to sleep, because I still have to get on with my life in a few hours. As my Arthurian Lit prof said the last time I had a major asthma attack, classes don’t stop just because I do.

On a lighter note, my sister is having a baby. Brian and I had gone out to dinner last night to celebrate. So much for a toast to the unborn child. More on that later.

Three years ago, I had an asthma attack in a restaurant. An allergic reaction to something I ate. The next few days were spent dragging myself through my classes while my body recovered. It was the most frightening experience I have ever had. I took it all pretty well until my mother helped me to the bathroom and blood began backing up my IV. At that point, it suddenly became real.

My asthma, for the most part, is simply something that I put up with. For most of the people around me it seems like a distant thing. Something I worry about and deal with, but that they have never actually had to experience. Those closer to me know. They have held their breath while I struggled for mine, And yet still, there is an unreality to it all. No words I can say will ever really express what it’s like it have an attack and know that the next breath may be the last.

I keep getting the chills, no matter how much clothing I’m wearing, or how warm the room is. After the chills, I get hot and clamy, and then chilled again. It’s the weirest kind of sickness I’ve ever had. But I want to remember how I feel right now, so that when I have another major attack, I can see if I feel the same way. Not that I especially want to have another attack, but I probably will at some point in the course of my life. Just because it took this long to have my first major attack doesn’t mean I’ll never have another.

Someday, I’ll put together every reference to an asthma attack I have ever written. But not today. Today it’s simply too overwhelming.

On April 2nd, I’ll be participating in the Houston Asthma Walk. Donate go here or for information on joining or donating to the team, go here.

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