Kiss Your Loved Ones Everyday…

Pasting an entry I made on a webboard, since I don’t feel like writing an entirely new entry. Let’s just say that celebrating my birthday with my husband and friend didn’t go quite as smoothly as I had wished…

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I woke up this morning VERY thankful to be alive. I suffered through an allergic reaction last night which, after doing research tonight, seems to have been anaphylaxis. I endured three hours of hell during which I couldn’t breathe and my blood pressure went dangerously low many times. It’s a miracle that I survived. Actually, I think the only reason I made it through is thanks to Shawn and my friend Julie, who stayed with me and nursed me through it.

Now, before anybody lectures me on not going to the hospital, there is a bit of background on that. About two months ago or so I had my first ever allergic reaction to–something. We never identified what. I woke up in the middle of the night with my head itching like crazy. It soon moved to my threat and I broke out in hives, got dizzy, and had trouble breathing. It scared us enough that Shawn called 911. By the time the paramedics arrived 5 minutes later, the worst of it was over. They seemed rather unconcerned and suggested I take benadryl and caffeine to combat the effects. They said I could go to the emergency room if I wanted, but that it didn’t really seem necessary.

Erego why we weren’t very concerned last night when the head-itching and hives commenced. Well, we were _concerned_, but not _scared_. Shawn ran across the street from the bar we were hanging out in to get some benadryl, and the bartender gave me some Red Bull for the caffeine value. I took two benadryl, and we waited for it to get better. Unfortunately, it didn’t. It only got worse. But by the time it got REALLY bad we had already taken me home, and anaphylaxis set in, and my mind and body were so fucked up that I couldn’t quite communicate to Shawn and Julie just how bad it was. Not to mention the alcohol in my system didn’t help my coherence factor.

I have never been so scared in my life. I came close to death more times than I care to remember. Had it not been for Shawn and Julie alternatively coaxing and browbeating me, I would have given up the fight a few times and…well, let’s just say I wouldn’t be writing this now.

Needless to say I have instructed Shawn to take me to the emergency room at the first sign of such a reaction again, and I will be making an appointment with my doctor first thing tomorrow. Hopefully she can fit me in soon. I need to figure out what is causing this, and, more importantly, get some damn epi-pen or something to have in hand next time. Fucking Benadryl does NOT work for anaphylactic level reactions. Mild ones, sure, but the kind I had last night need injections of epiphedrine/adrenaline.

Moral of the story–make sure you always kiss your loved ones and tell them what they mean to you. You never know when your time is going to be up.

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Needless to say, I didn’t get much (read: any) writing done this weekend. But considering I’m lucky to be alive, I can live with that for now.

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8 responses to “Kiss Your Loved Ones Everyday…

  1. *hugs*
    Kait, hon, you really need to figure out what’s the allergen. Seriously. Because the way the immune system works, anaphylaxis gets faster and faster, harder and harder with each successive exposure. I could go into a immunology lecture of how it works, but you don’t need that right now.
    Do you think it might be a nut allergy of some sort? That, shellfish, and eggs are the most common culprits for reactions that severe.
    *hugs tightly* I’m glad you’re all right.

    • Re: *hugs*
      Oh I understand that now. I was too incoherent to understand much of anything on Saturday. I don’t think it was nuts, shellfish, or eggs. We suspect that it POSSIBLY may have been the grenadine in the drink I had at the bar. We ordered a “fish bowl” to share for our birthday, and come to find out that particular one had vodka, 7up, lime juice, something, and grenadine in it. I did research on grenadine yesterday and it is a strong syrup made from pomegranate juice. Now, I’ve never had pomegranate or pomegranate juice so I suspect that may have been what triggered it this time since the reaction started not long after I started drinking that drink. Then again that doesn’t explain the milder reaction last time.
      My doctor can fit me in this morning, so that’s a good thing. Believe me I am taking this very seriously. *hugs back*

  2. Have your doctor run extensive allergy tests, if you can’t identify the culprit yourself. Or even if you can. We do not want Kaits to fall over dead.
    I came to the grim acceptance on Friday that I needed to go to the doctor to get an asthma inhaler, myself. Gaming, of all things, set off hours worth of wheezing, and I just need to suck up the fact that my body’s betrayed me and I need to get drugs of some sort to help these attacks. They don’t happen often, but it’s horrible when they do. 😛

    • I agree–no dead Kaits allowed! My doctor can’t fit me in today, but her partner can fit me in this afternoon. I plan to have them run extensive allergy tests and hook me up with the Epi-pen so I can always keep that on hand.
      Ick! I feel for you. Not being able to breath is bad. Really bad.

  3. Eep!
    Yes, allergic reactions are bad. Run, do not walk, RUN to the doctor and demand every sort of blood-test known to mankind. That is NOT a normal allergic reaction. If you’ve had blood tests before, have them do so AGAIN, because you can develop severe allergies to stuff over time.
    Hope you feel better, and I’ll go kiss my husband now in honor of your post (not that I need much urging).

    • Re: Eep!
      I’m feeling you on this. Trust me, we are taking this very seriously. The problem on Saturday is that I was close to being drunk, my friend Julie WAS drunk, and I think Shawn was just overwhelmed and terrified and not sure what to do. We are researching and arming ourselves with knowledge and we will both talk to the doctor this afternoon so that we can be prepared to deal with this in the future. *hug*

  4. Let me add my voice to the chorus — the reaction you’re having is likely to get more severe and quicker to manifest each time if you do nothing about it. DO NOT wait the next time. Go immediately to the ER. Get to the doctor immediately and get tested; you need to know what the trigger is so you can avoid it in the future. Think over the two incidents in detail to see if you can identify common exposures, especially from eating — peanuts, for example, can cause reactions like that in people allergic to them. If there is a common item in what you ate immediately before the attack, I’d avoif eating it until you’ve been tested for allergies.
    A reaction that severe isn’t something to fool around with.

    • I agree completely, and we are going to pursue this to the utmost. Hopefully we can figure out the trigger for this. I know in some cases they can’t pinpoint the trigger and I really hope that’s not the case this time.