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Nurturing Myself: Honoring My Body

A couple of days ago I had a bit of a traumatic experience.  In the bigger scheme of things it was just a blip on the horizon, but it changed my plans over the last few days, causing me to spend several hours at the doctors and then at the pharmacy, and has caused me some severe pain and discomfort.  Amazing what a small thing like a bee sting can do.

I’m not going into the details.  The location of the sting is personal and somewhat embarrassing.  I was innocently weeding the garden when it happened, ripping out whole forests of weeds that had grown in the swampy heat of our Florida summer underneath the Chinese Privets and the Chaste tree. 

I grabbed yet another handful of weeds and found myself yanking on a long bindweed vine that was entwined in the Chaste three.  I yanked and I yanked and shook the tree to its roots without realizing that I was disturbing lots of bees or wasps (I’m never quite sure which they are) that were getting drunk on nectar from the blooms in the tree.  Next thing I know – pure white hot pain. 

Within fifteen minutes I had a huge swollen area of skin and no pain relief despite copious applications of ammonia.  Because of the location I decided that medical intervention was necessary as a precaution, so took myself to one of these “drive through” medical centers that have popped up like mushrooms.  I was told there was not much to do other than go home, ice it down and take Benadryl for the swelling and “did I want some Vicodin for pain?”.  (Is it any wonder that people get addicted to these kinds of medication?  Doctors seem to hand them out like candy!) 

Over an hour later I went home and did the ice thing, was already on an anti-histamine for something else so didn’t bother with the Benadryl, and took two 500mg Tylenol. Up until this point in time I had been dealing with pretty high level pain, so by the time the Tylenol kicked in I was exhausted.  I curled up on the couch feeling crappy and wiped out and thankfully fell asleep.  It was 8.15pm.  At some point in time I must have zombied into the bedroom.

During the night I tossed and turned and in the early morning realized that a local infection had set up at the sting site – it was blistered and yellow:-(.  So at a civilized hour I called my doctor and asked to go in.  They lanced the blister, took a culture and I was given a Tetanus shot and a prescription for antibiotics.  I was sent home with instructions to apply wet, hot pads during the day to “draw out the infection”. 

I had an appointment at my favorite Natural Nail Care Center and thought that it would lift my spirits (it always does).  But half way through, all I could think about was a nice comfortable bed or couch with cool sheets and a long nap.  However, two hours later with my hands and toes sporting Perky Purple nail polish, I felt a little better and decided to honor a date with my husband for a bite to eat and a movie. 

Halfway through the movie I became aware of a terrible itching sensation around the sting site, and by the time we got home there was an inflamed area about three and a half to four inches in diameter.  I took my meds, did my hot wet bathes and crawled into bed feeling crappy.  I had another toss- and-turn night and did not wake up feeling at all refreshed. 

So I cancelled all the plans I had for today and have just honored my body and let it rest and relax.  No housework has been done (thank God for pre-prepared meals!), no projects embarked upon.  I have rested and read a book, bathed the sting site and taken my meds.  Hopefully tomorrow I will feel ready to face the day with more energy.  If that is not the case, I will honor my body and take another day of rest.