Monday, 9 March 2015

A Painful Night

It's 9:45 AM; I've already been up for two hours. This was not by choice. My early arisal was driven by pain in my left ear, or actually where the Eustachian tube from my left ear drains into my throat. Since childhood I have had problems with infections in my left ear, some of them being sufficiently bad that my ears would run with fluid. My Mom took me to the doctors who would say "We can't see anything when they are so swollen. Bring him back when it drains." Of course after my ear drained, these brilliant men of science would say that they couldn't see anything wrong.

For the last couple of weeks I have had one of those low grade ear infections, annoying but not troublesome. There has been a bit of mild, stinging pain in my throat, nothing substantial. I was doing what I have done for my whole life with these minor infections, waiting for it to go away. I learned a long time ago that antibiotics would do nothing; a best an Aspirin or two would help with the minor pain.

Yesterday something changed. The pain in my ear, where the Eustachian tube meets my throat, became increasingly uncomfortable. I took a couple of Tylenol; they seemed to do no good. As we wound our way across the rolling prairie, watching farms and small towns pass endlessly, the pain slowly rose, becoming increasingly uncomfortable as the hours and miles went by. From Calgary to Drumheller to Kindersley to Rosetown and finally to Swift Current, it got worse with each passing marker.

Yet with all of this, it wasn't bad enough to seek medical attention. The pain was bearable and these things usually go away. Only this time it didn't; last night the pain was sufficient to awaken me from sleep and keep me from returning to slumber. Finally, this morning at 7:20 AM, I said "enough"; heading over to the local Emergency ward, or as my children used to call it, "the nerg".

At the Cypress Hills Regional Hospital, a very pregnant young intern dutifully inspected my ear, nothing that it "look fine" from the top end. She didn't check inside my throat. Her analysis was that I had an inflammation, a low grade ear infection, one not requiring antibiotics. I should take a pain relief medication like Tylenol or Advil, preferably Advil as it works better with inflammation.

All of this morning excitement has left me up early, having had breakfast well before 10:00 AM, having finished my writing, or close to it, before 10:00 AM. Katherine is busy loading the truck while I conclude, then we are off to Williston, ND by way of Weyburn, SK. It's another day of driving across the prairie. Let's hope it is less painful.

1 comment:

  1. Rick you should make sure the ear infection is over with before you leave the country. I hope it will recover soon.