Yesterday was a beautiful day in Eastern Ontario. It seemed that summer may have finally arrived. I had my day perfectly planned from start to finish, including several hours to be spent outside. Then it happened….. I was “ticked”.
My days never go as planned. There always seems to be a little of this or that requiring attention. Like housework that I never seem to be able to stay on top of, or weeds, or my husband needs me to do something or ….. many ors.
I finally sat down in my mini office, lowered my head in concentration mode, beginning paperwork I had intended on starting two hours earlier. As the hours moved along, I kept adjusting my shorts a little. In the back of my mind I was thinking that my denim shorts were not that tight, so why were they digging into my hip. I adjusted my shorts. I adjusted how I was sitting. I kept working.
I finished working. I changed into my outside gardening clothes which are much looser. The nagging pinch on my hip was still there. I decided to have a quick look. I pulled my shorts waistband down a few inches and thought sheesh. What a stupid place for a pimple.
And then it moved.
I’m not sure which came first, nausea, goosebumps or revulsion. They were all there in quick succession. Gross. Super gross.
A TICK had buried its head into my body. Its head was totally buried. I couldn’t take off. I speed dialed the doctor. Don’t take it off, I was told. We will see you at 7:30pm. Now I had to figure out how to pass the next four hours with this little parasite stuck to me. Goosebumps from the top of my head to my feet, rippled over my body again and again. In fact, every time I thought about IT, waves of revulsion passed over my body.
I called my husband. Good you didn’t pull it off, he said. Smart to call the doctor. Phew! Good to hear I had made some good decisions here. We pondered where on earth I could have gotten IT. The last bunch of days had been cold and raining. The dog was on tick medication so ticks are supposed to fall off of her. The only place we could think of, was a nursery we had gone to on Father’s Day. We had stayed in the short grass or paths the entire time. No clue. A mystery.
I’m paranoid. I look up Lyme Disease and its symptoms. My body is itching in different places. I needed to distract myself. I texted, messaged and received a phone call to fill in the next hour or so. My one daughter suggested I put a Band-Aid on it. That made sense. Stop my clothes from rubbing on it. Irritating it. The spot was starting to hurt, to burn. No, she said, so you don’t have to look at it. Excellent advice. More goosebumps and shuddering. Slapped a Band-Aid on.
I start my outdoor chores for more distraction. Each time I bend it hurts. The little bugger doesn’t like being squished. I decide to sweep. I can sweep standing up.
Time to make supper. I feel weird making supper with my little parasite hanging onto my side. I do it anyway. Supper is made and it is almost time to head to the doctors. I look at the food and I cannot eat.
The doctor’s receptionist and I have a good chuckle. I tell her how grossed out I am over this little bug. She agrees. It’s gross. We share funny stories. Mine will be another one they can share in the office. The middle-aged woman with a tick stuck to her side, who can’t stop being repulsed. The doctor is on time. I make my typical wise cracks. He is slightly amused; I can see the smile in his eyes. He needs a special little tool. He goes and gets it. Down goes my waist band again by a few inches. I cannot see what he is doing. I am not sure I want to. A few minutes later my parasite friend is gone. I pace in the little room waiting for my one dose, antibiotic prescription.
I leave and rush to the Costco pharmacy to get it filled before closing. I let my husband know that the dirty deed is done. While I wait, I walk around the store. I am starving. I message all the people I shared my horror story with, to let them know that I had been set free. I still had more time to pass. I message with a friend. I tell her how hungry I am in a store full of food. Her response…. I guess it would be hard to eat when something is eating you. Yup! That summed up how I felt at supper time perfectly.
I got my pills. Two. To be taken together. I had to see the pharmacist so he could explain the side effects. No dairy for a few days and well other stuff. Suffice it to say I am staying home today.
I finally ate my supper at nine pm. I took my pills. My hip still hurt. Not the same burning hurt but it was sensitive. It still is.
I love summer with all it’s beauty. The plants, the grass, the trees. I do not like all the bugs that come with it. I really don’t like ticks.
Life can turn on a dime. Often, I am overwhelmed by the myriad of issues I deal with each day. Which task to work on first. Am I being the right support for the people closest to me? How will retirement go for me? How will I handle illness, housework, yard work and paper work? So much stuff. Lots of days I would like a magic wand to wipe it all away, sending me to a place of calmness and peace, less things pulling me in different directions. Banishing the wee creature that sits on my shoulder whispering, you are not enough, you don’t do enough, you don’t do or say the right things often enough. Perhaps one small tick parasite has helped me reset my path. I am not in control of my days. I am enough. One small tick threw quite the wrench into my planning this week. For the moment, I have reset and found contentment in my imperfect life. A deep-seated peace, secure in knowing I have done my best and I don’t get everything “my kind of right” every time.
Today, I am grateful to live in Canada where a quick phone call to a doctor, four hours and a dose of antibiotics, keep me safe from pesky little bugs carrying disease. I think about people who do not have health care like this. It leaves an ache in my middle.