Sunday, 5 August 2012

Day 26: Ticks and Tick Bite Fever


When I was a kid, me and my older brother and sister joined our local Scouting group and we’d do lots of outdoor activities and go on out on camps etc.

During that time I would hear stories from other kids within the group and other friends who were in scouting groups about kids who had gone camping with their scouting group and that a kid from their group had died during the night, and that they later found out that it was due to tick bites (or similar types of stories).

It was interesting, because these stories would go around as “horror stories” and from then on I was really scared of long grass and not wearing high boots and long pants in long grass from the fear of ticks and other bugs getting on to me and biting me.

Then years later I came to the Farm and there ticks became a part of daily life. Horses had ticks, dogs had ticks, cats had tick – humans had ticks! That was a bit of a shocker for me, because now all those horror stories started creeping up again going “don’t get bitten, you’re gonna DIE!!!”  Lol

In the beginning I had some issues with pulling off ticks from the dogs and the horses, especially those who’d been sucking for a while and they’re one big blood balloon, and once you pull them you kind of squash them at the same time and the blood then squirts around you, and in some unfortunate cases on you and your face (and in even more unfortunate events in your eyes and mouth).

But as it became a habit of pulling and killing ticks, it just became ‘normal’.

Then, last week Friday evening I started feeling very nauseous, feverish, my neck was stiffening up, I had a headache and I noticed that one of my lymph nodes by my groin was quite swollen. At first I didn’t connect all the symptoms together until I remember that I had an itchy insect bite close to the lymph node that was swollen (I didn't even know that it was a tickbite, as I had been scratching it through my pants and assumed it was a mosquito bite).

The next day we went to the doctor and they confirmed that I had tick bite fever. They wanted to keep me in the hospital for a few days, where the doctor was referring to some very rare cases where this type of tick bite fever causes brain problems and where once or twice a year they will have someone with the same symptoms that they have to hook up on respirators. So I as I heard that of course, I went into complete fear mode “what? Attack my brain? Be hooked up on machinery? Nooooooo” yet at the same time I could feel the deception coming from the doctor using fear to keep me in the hospital for a few days (which is very, VERY costly). Since a bunch of other people had had tick bite fever on the farm, and were all treated at home successfully with lots of rest and the right medicine, we requested to not be admitted and rather be discharged (so they can stop CHARGING us lol).

So now I’ve been sick for over a week, with some definitive improvement where I’m not in pain and feverish all the time, but it will creep up and subside in random patterns/cycles. The bite was pitch black with red around it (the black being dead skin tissue), and today the black bit got pushed out by my body, and now there’s just a hole in my leg that's busy healing.

It’s been quite an interesting week in terms of looking at all the fears and other bullshit that comes up in relation to being sick. And then also interesting in terms of being forced out of my normal daily schedule and being able to see all the various ideas and rules I had made up about my daily routine and tasks, which now seem obviously ridiculous – but while I was “in my pattern” as all the various things I had created and attached to my daily routines, and participating within it = I didn’t see it at all. 

For some reason my legs are also quite weak and I can only walk in “slow motion style” which has also been cool for me because I tend to rush from point A to B within the ‘menial’ little things we do in everyday life like eating, putting your dishes away, fetching this and that -- where I saw myself wanting to go into the same pattern of rushing but then as I turn around to move myself from point A to B, my body would literally hold me back and then I got reminded that I can only do the slow-mo walk – so I have been enjoying this point as well as literally having to slow myself down and being aware of every step I take.

So yeah, the whole being in pain and puking part sucks ass but at the same time it also shows you how a small thing like a tick can put your life ”upside down” for a moment and show you what really matters: which is this physically reality -- and that the mind as all the thoughts, feeling, emotions and back chat is really puny and non-important. Because while you’re sick all that matters is you as your physical body getting better and all the thoughts, worries, etc that I would experience during my daily life within my usual ‘routine’ were now completely irrelevant, and I could now see how they are completely unnecessary to living life.

 I am quite grateful for this somewhat painful reminder lol.


Self-Forgiveness and Self Corrective Statements/Commitments to follow…


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