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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
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Tuesday
May302006

It’s the little things.

So Friday my family went to Italy. The whole Italy trip is a complicated and dangerous subject, and I won’t get into it! You can’t make me! The bottom line is they all went and I did not. Which I thought I was totally over because after all I had six months to get used to the idea; they were going on my birthday (well, okay, two days before) and I was a little sad about that, but it’s not like I usually see my family members on my birthday anyway, so whatever. When they originally made these plans I hadn’t known we were going to move, so feeling set apart from them in our New New Jersey-ness didn’t help my feelings about the trip, and on my birthday I found that I was perhaps more upset about it than I had anticipated (read: wept until I thought I might throw up). And yes, I know, we moved two hours away, it’s not like we live in Alaska, OMG GET OVER YOURSELF, but wow, I felt sorry for myself that day.

And that night! I started losing my hearing! And by Monday morning my right ear was throbbing and shooting pains were radiating into my brain and also! Peeing felt like I was being stabbed in the pelvic region, and we all know what that means, don’t we, girls? So I call my nice New Jersey doctor, who calls in antibiotic drops for my poor ear and antibiotics for my poor bladder and I stagger around yesterday feeling like a steaming pile of dung, but as I pointed out to my husband, at least I can’t hear my screams when I’m trying to pee!

I woke up today fully expecting to 1) feel better and 2) there’s no #2, but in fact my bladder feels worse, and I went to see my doctor! And he says! That! I need another antibiotic for my ear because I have a more serious infection than he previously thought, and that it seems my bladder infection might be resistant to these antibiotics, and I really should see a female urologist as I get bladder infections if I look at a cup of coffee or if I even say the word “tampon,” and I’m sitting on the examining table hearkening back in my mind to my bladder surgery when I was ten, and please oh pleeease don’t make me do that again, and I want my mommy! But I don’t tell the doctor that! Because I think he would have climbed on a plane to go get her!

But then I was waiting in the waiting room (where you wait) for the doctor to provide me with yet another passel of prescriptions (does my local pharmacist believe that I have the clap? Oh, yes he does) and while I’m waiting, the man sitting next to me is talking on his cell phone about his medical problem. And he says, “I’m calling about my swollen bone.”

And I started to laugh. And I couldn’t stop. I’m hiding behind More magazine (because I’m not over 40 yet, but it’s only a THREE YEARS AWAY) and he keeps saying it. “I’m just not getting relief with this swollen bone. This swollen bone is really a distraction for me. I’d really appreciate it if you could get your hands on my swollen bone.”

He didn’t really say that last part, but my god—thank you, sir. I’m sure your condition is painful, but it brought me joy.

Reader Comments (81)

I know, I know, so many folks have posted alternative remedies for chronic UTIs...but the one I used wasn't mentioned! So! Now I feel obligated to mention it. *grin*

One tablespoonful of apple cider vinegar with a cup of water. Drink that once a day. It goes along, I suppose, with the theory of vitamin C - makes the bladder so damn acidic, nothing can cling to it. I had something like 10 UTIs in a year (or maybe it was more - I don't remember), and this was the ONLY thing that helped.

The antibiotics? Yeah, they didn't. They've left me with persistent yeast infections. In my esophagus, even. Urgh.
June 2, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMaggie
Man with swollen bone brings joy to me, too! Thank you man with swollen bone! Laughed til I cried. Excellent! This is fabulous therapy even for those without UTI or ear infections.

But, Alice, please do feel better soon and screw what your pharmacist thinks! Oh wait, don't... you have the clap... er, ear infection! That's right. And a UTI. Dear God. Take those antibiotics, drink lots of juice and pee a lot. Rest. Get better.
June 4, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterTitanKT
Ouch. And, uh, ouch again. Jeez, you've had a shitty time of it. I hope you feel better soon
June 4, 2006 | Unregistered Commentervictoria
My dad's a doctor and I used to work in his office. Dang, those old dudes are funny. I love how the make up nonexistent conditions like swollen bones or arthur-itis in my lungs or infected hair.
June 4, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterRee
I feel your pain. I've had chronic UTI's since I was nine years old. Something about a slightly abnormal urinary tract is the cause of mine. I find that drinking yarrow tea (a bitter herb tea that's a urinary antiseptic) greatly reduces the number of infections I get.

I hope that little bit of advice helps.
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterjules
oh yeah - another thing that helps me, not so much with actual infections but with general discomfort, is drinking bottled water. I stopped drinking chlorinated tap water where I live when it occurred to me that I rarely have the nearly constant irritation when I'm traveling. Am I under less stress when traveling? No, not necessarily - sometimes I'm under a lot of stress on a business trip. Do I drink or eat healthier? No. I still drink as much or even more coffee and tea away from home. The only think that could be different was the tap water. I've been much happier since I started drinking bottled water at home. My favorite, which I splurge on like some people sodas, is Evian because it seems to be more alkaline/less acidic than any of the others.
June 5, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterjules

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