Monday, September 22, 2008

Illness, or Check Out the Souvenir I Brought Home From Mexico!

Please don't think that this is a whiny "I want attention and sympathy post." This is cathartic for me and is helping me to get through what I am dealing with currently.

In July our family went on our first "real" vacation. Ie, somewhere we had to fly to. We choose to go to Cancun & Cozumel. I was excited, but was nervous for a variety of different reasons:

I hadn't flown in 8 years.

The girls had never flown before.

It was a long flight (8-12 hours). Would the kids melt down?

It was a foreign country, with kids.

I don't speak Spanish. Je parle francais.

Um, tourista? (the fashionable new term for Montezuma's)

Someone would kidnap my children. (Seriously)

All this from the girl who lived out of a backpack in France for 3 1/2 months. Mainly it was about the kids, though. As many of you know if the kids aren't happy, well, you know....

I prepared, got every medication possible, got a couple of guide books, a mini-dictionary and read every warning about travelling in Mexico. The biggest thing I prepared for was "tourista". I knew it was a possible vacation-breaker, especially if the kids got it. I had the ways to avoid getting it ingrained in my head:

No fresh fruits or veggies. That meant no ceviche!

Bottled drinks only.

No tap water, don't even brush your teeth with tap water.

Eat only cooked food. Again, no ceviche!

The one exception was that you could drink tap water if it had been boiled for something like 15 minutes.

Enter Chichen Itza.

We took a tour to Chichen Itza (a Mayan pyramid complex). We had a fabulous time, a great tour guide (Senor Tortuga) and would recommend for others to go see it. I am a history geek, so this hit the spot for me. Human sacrifice, ancient history, plus it is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Seriously, how cool is that? Oh, and we saw a rattlesnake.

Side note: the kids were not really interested in the tour (big surprise!) so they pretty much layed on the ground in the shade. Our tour guide talked & talked & talked for two hours. He talked about human sacrifice at one point and used himself as the example. At the end of the tour, R asks me if he was really going to climb to the top of the temple and sacrifice himself. Glad to know she retained something. I think she was a little disappointed when I said he would not be sacrificing himself.

So after we were done, we got to go to this amazing restaurant for some regional Mayan food. Yum. And weird. Mainly yum. So in my head I am going through my mantra, "no fruit, no veggies..." you get the point. Well, at one point I had some soup, which had definitely not been boiled for 15 minutes. In my head at this moment, all I'm thinking is "yum, more food." No warning lights are going off. It was to be our downfall. Thankfully the kids wouldn't touch the stuff.

My "Last Supper"

In the wee hours of the morning it hit me. Oh joy. So at one point I was sitting down, and I pass out. And land on my head. Thankfully I landed in a pile of clothes and wasn't hurt. Just unconscious for who knows how long. I landed with my head kinked and hiney in the air. How undignified.

Thanks to my super-mom genes I was only sick for about 12 hours.

So for the rest of our trip I was ok. I had mild motion-sickness which I attributed to being in/on the water a lot, the airplane ride, the heat and being super busy. So we came home and I figured it would take a little while to recover, but I kept getting progressively worse. It started out as major fatigue, occasional dizziness and occasional ringing in my ears. Over the weeks it has gotten worse. Constant dizziness and tinnitus (the fancy word for ringing in your ears) and I have seen 4 doctors and all the fun stuff that comes with seeing them. Results: uh? "It's not a tumor." (Say it with an accent, it helps). They still don't know what is wrong with me.

I have only recently received some relief in the form of medication. It helps with the dizziness quite a bit, but not the ringing in my ears. Which is great, but it also makes me a super tired sleeping blob and I still have a hard time sleeping at night. Oh, and I can only use it for a couple of weeks. Go figure.

Which is why I decided to finally start this blog. I needed an outlet. And to find humor and lessons from this all. And something to occupy me at midnight when I want to sleep but I can't because I took a four hour drug-induced nap (true story). Insomnia rocks.

Side note: I went and bought myself the most comfortable pajamas I have EVER owned. So I could at least be comfortable in my misery. I have worn them everyday for the last week and a half. They are that good.

The End.

Me in my new pajamas and a can of brown paint in the background.

Don't you want to know what it is for?


RORYJEAN said...

Wow- I'm, sorry that you had bring home such a yucky soveneir from your trip. Sounds miserable. I hope it gets better soon!

An Ordinary Mom said...

Oh, Jennifer! I wish there was more I could do for you to help alleviate this misery you are enduring! Are there any other specialists you could possibly see? We have got to get your better! I am sure it is driving you crazy not being able to do everything you want to.

At least you look cute in your pj's :) !!

Jessica said...

Oh my goodness! I didn't know you passed out. How scary. I can't believe this has gone on for so long. You've always got projects going on and things to do, and I bet it is hard to have to take it easy. I really hope the doctors can figure this out and get you better. Hang in there.

Hope said...

Oh Sweetie! I know how excited you were about going when I saw you 2 weeks before you left. I am so sorry! How terrible. Some friends of ours went, and got Montezuma's Revenge. They were in thier hotel room for days with that. The brown paint-I think you are going to paint your bedroom?