Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Part 2 - You Can't Take Me Anywhere

Sunday morning I wake up again at 12:00 am and I can't swallow. Panic floods through me and my mind starts racing, "Oh my gosh I can't swallow, can I breathe? Yes. Why can't I swallow, is my throat swollen now? Calm down breathe through your nose. Oh crap I am in Mexico and my throat is swelling I am going to DIE. No, you're not going to die, you are going to see what the inside of a Mexican hospital looks like, and perhaps get a tracheotomy." Side note: I love Mexico. I love the atmosphere I love the people, I feel at home in Mexico, I love the quaintness of the towns, with that said I don't want to go to a Mexican hospital.(I really don't want to go to a US hospital either, doctors freak me out.)
The conversation in my head continued. "I need that stupid epinephrine pen. Calm down and breathe. If the epinephrine is an adrenaline shot then I guess it's good my heart is racing like this. Okay, am I dying or am I just having some weird sore throat thing?" I got up an went into the bathroom to diagnosis myself. (Apparently I am just as qualified since the allergy specialist diagnosed it "unknown swelling".) From all appearances everything looks fine but the prognosis I gave myself was imminent death.
I went back into the bedroom and woke up my husband and told him what was happening, apparently too calmly, because he just gets me some tap water. When I try to drink it I panic some more because I cant swallow it, it just sits in my mouth with nowhere to go. My next step was the Internet.  "What was the medication I had at home that kind of worked. How do you even say epinephrine in Spanish?" All we keep saying to each other is "what should we do?" I lie down and concentrate on my breathing, and every so often he would say something to make sure I was awake. This wasn't working and I kept going back and forth in my head "Am I dying or am I a hypochondriac?"  I decide to have Mr. Sugartarian go to the guard station at the entrance of the subdivision and ask if any of the 50 pharmacies in a town of 14,000 people are open 24 hours a day. The guard calls the only pharmacy in town that should be open, and of course with my luck they are closed. He offers to call a doctor to come to the house, and we decline. (If I'm just crazy and nothing is really wrong I'm going to need a different type of doctor anyway.) The guard says that there is another pharmacy that should be open 24 hours in another town that is 70 miles and a military check point away. He will have a police officer go and check to see if it's open for us. No thank you, again I don't want to inconvenience someone else if I am just a drama queen. (I do have to say how wonderful all of the people we have met over the years in San Felipe are.)

My husband and dad, who we travel with, thought we should pack up and go home so we would at least be in the U.S. Apparently their heads don't work like mine, "What if we are halfway to the border in the middle of the desert and my throat completely closes, at least here we are surrounded by elderly snowbirds with lots of medication."  We packed up and my husband drove like Robby Gordon (Off-road racer) down the dirt highway across the border. As we crossed the border, my dad driving in front of us told the border patrol we were leaving early because I was sick. When we pull up to the border patrol he asks which one of use was sick, and made some small talk. As we pull away Mr. Sugartarian says you know your dad probably shouldn't have told them you were sick, after the Swine Flu hysteria they might quarantine people who are sick. That would be my kind of luck. They didn't quarantine me and my throat never got worse. By the time we reached Palm Springs it returned to normal. So now I will be going to my local pharmacy and getting one of those stupid epinephrine pens to carry with me. As we sped through the border town of Mexicali I did manage to find and take pictures of my kind of shops.

A Bakery

A Candy Shop

A Smoothie Shop

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