So to say that the past couple of months have been challenging is an understatement… It all started at the beginning of October; we tragically lost our little girl Clover at the age of 2 and a half. (She’s below helping me mow the lawn back August <3 )
Next up: about a week later my father in law was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.
Then of course the #3 was that I caught Mono… Grown woman caught the “kissing disease” I was thrilled. After a quick scan of the internet to better understand what is going on in my mouth and body I realized that there’s really not a lot of information available..
Things I learned from the internet:
It’s spread by saliva.
You get a fever.
You get tired.
You’re gonna be tired for awhile.
Sore throat and headache.
Things I experienced:
My throat was on fire.
My lymph nodes swelled up so big it felt like there was 2 golf balls in my neck. It horrifically restricted my vocal cords.
(TMI) I was producing so much phlegm every few hours I had to vomit to relieve myself. It was easy though- just took a deep breath, and away we went!
Oh yeah I was tired… One day according to my Fitbit I slept for 16 hours.
My head was on fire and no amount of drugs helped. Ice pack would bring some relief.
The flu like symptoms (fever) were the easiest part of the whole experience.
No brain power, couldn’t even read… I spent a week and a half playing idle games on my tablet when I wasn’t sleeping. Killed me.
Things I learned from my doctor and nurses I worked with:
Yes, it is spread by saliva but it can be contracted as easily as touching a shopping cart. (infected person touches face then touches cart; I then proceed to touch cart and touch face) This realization on how easy it spreads was a relief, because looking at the internet information made me more confused and frustrated than anything: how did this happen? I don’t share drinks, I don’t kiss random strangers… How did this happen?
You essentially have tonsillitis without being able to medicate it with antibiotics. The only thing you can do to recover is rest and hydration because it’s viral and not bacterial.
Working an 8 hour day is impossible, and I was immediately pulled from work.
I couldn’t believe the extreme symptoms from Mono, with no ability to mediate it aside from some pain killers. The information available really sugar coated the whole experience- it was a personal hell.
I wanted to take some time to talk about it because it was so much more extreme than anything that is available on WebMD or whatever you choose to use to try to diagnose yourself while you wait at a walk-in clinic.
The biggest thing I learned through the whole experience was rest and hydration is the most important thing. Even after my energy came back, I could only do something for an hour or two before I needed a rest.
I was so lucky that I started to feel human again after about a week and a half when my taste buds came back I thought I was in the clear. Unfortunately, my doctor didn’t feel the same way. Giving that it’s a serious viral infection she only wanted me to start back up at work 3 days a week.. So for the rest of 2018 I’m only working Monday, Wednesday and Friday’s to give myself a day to recover after a day at work. It’s a weird feeling after working full time or very close to since I was 16, and I can’t take advantage of the days off like I would like to… But it’s giving me time to reflect and brainstorm life. I’ve been told by loved ones and physicians who barely know me that some of these extreme symptoms may have come on because I push myself too much… That was really food for thought because I’ve always been proud of my busy lifestyle. I guess as you get older it’s not as easy to keep going in all directions.
The rest of this year I’m going to work on improving myself physically and mentally and hopefully something like this won’t happen again.. (thankfully you can only get mono once in your life) I still can’t exercise much so I’m considering taking up light yoga and meditation.
One last thing I will say as well, I am so grateful to have a family doctor. In Nova Scotia it’s a rarity right now- most are stuck on wait lists because our family doctors are retiring faster than they are being recruited. I don’t know where I would be without her right now and as much as I know I need to tone down the amount of things I take on, I’d really like to help with attracting family doctors to Nova Scotia in the future.