In the rain

I had another bad night last night. A few hours I went to bed, I coughed so much I threw up, a lot. This is the third time that has happened in recent weeks. After throwing up I felt marginally better, but it didn’t last, and after awhile I was hungry again. Fearful of nausea, I had a Slim-Fast instead of food, which thankfully stayed down.

Later, I woke up in a panic, trying to breathe. I had stopped breathing in my sleep again. I haven’t had that problem since I started sleeping with my head inclined and using saline nasal spray and Flonase. But there it was. My nose was clear and it didn’t feel like my throat was stopped up. Instead, it just felt like I stopped breathing for no particular reason. I tried to go back to sleep but my breathing felt weird and I was terrified I’d stop breathing again, so I got up and messed around online for awhile.

I felt horrible. It was like there was a rock in my chest, and I kept having waves of mild dizziness, the kind of feeling you get when you take a sedative. I pondered going to the ER several times.

Finally I tried going back to bed and lying on my stomach. For some reason, this calmed me down and made me feel better. My breathing didn’t feel as forced. I wasn’t able to fall asleep, but I was able to relax, which felt great. Finally I rolled onto my side and slept until after noon.

Today I had a Slim-Fast for breakfast, again out of fear of throwing up. I still felt a little nauseated due to gunk in the back of my throat. And sitting there in 70 degree air conditioning, I started sweating and feeling overheated, which has been happening intermittently for at least the past week. My skin gets clammy and Sean says I’m freezing to the touch, but I feel so hot and uncomfortable I can’t stand it until I take a bath or shower. But I don’t have a fever; I’ve checked.

Another symptom I’ve had off and on is swelling/bloating in my feet, ankles, thighs, and hips, but thankfully I’ve had little or none of that today.

I wasn’t feeling too hot, but I needed to run to the store and pick up a few things, like laundry detergent. So I went. Shopping when feeling this way is not fun; there’s nowhere to sit down, and the cart I chose tended to roll away when I leaned on it, so the best I could do was stand still for a few minutes whenever I’d start to feel woozy or urpy. After a time I noticed that I was hot and sweaty again, from hardly any movement, in an air conditioned building. My skin was all pink and my clothes were sticking to me. Additionally, I felt very tired and run down. I wrapped up my shopping as quickly as possible and wondered if I should ask someone to help me get the stuff to my car. Ultimately I got everything loaded myself, returned the cart, and then just sat in the driver’s seat for awhile to recover.

It was 98 degrees out, but I left the windows rolled down rather than use the air conditioning, and it was nice. The heat evaporated the sweat (although it did cause more), and the breeze felt nice. As I drove home it started to rain, just a slight spatter here and there. I stuck my arm out the window to catch some of the droplets. An inexplicable emotion came over me and I moaned as if I was going to start crying.

The on again, off again rain continued as I pulled into the apartment complex. I stopped in a space and turned the car off and just sat there, watching the rain pelt my windshield and die away. I eventually opened the door and let some of it smack me in the arm.

After a time the rain got harder and harder. There was no lightning; it was just a downpour. I got tired of my left arm being the only part of me to get wet, so I got out of the car and stood full on in the rain.

It felt so good.

My clothes were drenched within seconds, but I stood there anyway. The air was warm enough that the rain felt very comfortable. I glanced over and saw a neighbor sitting on his porch, presumably staring at me, though it was hard to tell through the sheets of water. I shrugged and went back to enjoying the rain.

It wasn’t long, though, before I decided it would probably be best to get my purse out of the water, and also take the refrigerated groceries into the apartment. So I opened the hatch and grabbed all the perishables and lugged them up to the front door. Opening it, I set the sopping bags and my purse in the entryway and called Sean to ask him to put them away. “I’m going to stand in the rain for awhile,” I said, and shut the door.

I stood outside until the air temperature started dropping and the rain started to feel cold. Water washed over me and I considered sitting on the steps to enjoy it, but ultimately I just stood there until I thought I might be in danger of catching cold. Then, reluctantly, I opened the door, removed my shoes and left them outside, wrung out my shirt as best I could, and made a bee-line for the bathroom, where I stripped down and hung all my clothes in the shower.

Emerging with a towel on my head, I informed Sean, “That was awesome.” He looked pretty perplexed.

Honestly, I don’t know what it is with me and water, but it just seems to rejuvenate me. And I’ve always loved standing in the rain.

I can’t say I feel 100%, but I certainly feel better than I did when I was leaving the grocery store.

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