It was 104 degrees last Saturday. I didn't leave my house all day as the concrete had burst into flames and my tires had liquefied and become one with the pavement. I think my second floor apartment might actually have melted down to the ground floor unless I had Gerbera Daisies right outside my door and never realized it for five years. I had my aircon on high all day and the day before and after finally getting the indoor temp down to 79 degrees, my nose started to bleed.
I turned off the aircon at midnight and went over to McLoserstene's. She told me to use my humidifier which I had, of course, FINALLY just put away having left it on the floor of my bedroom for about 3 months. I filled it with a gallon or two of water and then tried to set it on the floor. Try bending over with a bloody nose and an oblong POORLY conceived plastic housing unit full of water sloshing back and forth. Go ahead. I'll wait.
I went to bed around 1 a.m. and felt blood dripping down the back of my throat. I sat up and it did the same thing. I never got to sleep and by morning remembered it was Labor Day weekend, which meant only the homeless were going to be in their offices. And while we're on the topic of Labor Day, shouldn't we be celebrating it by WORKING?
I phoned my internist but he was out of the country and his on-call suggested I call 911 and have them take me to an ER. I did that once before and the bus they sent for me had cute medics but they really should serve caviar and Cristal in there for the $900 they charge you. McLoserstene’s mom told me to go to the ER on my own. I was actually glad my own mother was not around because she would have said, “Well, what have you done now?” The nosebleed would have been my fault because I control both the nasal passage in my nose and the signal that the brain sends to the nose. And oh yes, I probably stuck a broken fingernail up there and doodled with it on my nasal passages in my spare time bleeding to death. (Although that part is possible)
Sidebar: Once I choked on a piece of meat and when the paramedics arrived and told my family I was going to have to be taken to a hospital, my mother replied: Ohhhhh, now my last day in LA is going to be ruined. The paramedics exchanged looks. Instead of choosing to ride with me in the back, my mother opted to ride with Mr. August from The Paramedic's 2005 pin-up calendar. When the hospital wanted to release me to my sister and mother I begged them to let me stay with them instead. I was afraid that if I was sent home and we were eating dinner and I started to convulse they'd wait until after dessert to call 911 just to, you know, not ruin dessert. No, I don't like my family if that's your next question.
So my neighbor PJ drove me to the ER. Joe was also available but he was watching the games and I didn't have the heart to get between a man and his games. It turned out my blood pressure was 200/110, which is, apparently, not good.
I was there for 4 hours. I was given 2 blood pressure pills, or was it Extasy? had my BP taken 3 times (it came way down) and had blood drawn. When I first saw the doctor I told him to give me an Ativan to lower my anxiety. He said he wanted to lower my BP first. I told him that the 3 times this had happened over the course of fifteen years, this is what the doctors always did; the BP lowers itself once you administer Ativan, an anti-anxiety drug. I explained that I've been going to doctors since I was 13 years old and that I don't do well when I'm in their offices due to past emotional experiences, like them wanting to cut me open and fill me with steel and aluminum. Call me a pussy, but that scares the shit out of me.
Instead, Dr. Sensitive forced me to pinch my own nostrils shut for over 2 hours. This in turn made the situation worse in that the bleeding increased and now I couldn't breathe and had two giant indentations on either side of my nose. Which of course made me more anxiety ridden which of course REQUIRED ATIVAN. Dr. Tampon, called thusly because he finally, after 3 hours, inflated two tampon-like devices up my nostrils and left the 10 inch strings hanging out the ends of my nose. The look for Fall and the psych ward. Win-win.
I also had packing around the tampon and the strings. I resembled a marionette that had been cobbled together by a blind wood carver. I had now lost so much blood that I was weak and thinking they definitely had given me extasy. I thought I heard Dr. Tampon say,
“You have to come back in a few days.”
“To remove the packing.”
“This packing isn’t going to last 3 days.” Dr. Tampon seemed unconcerned with my diagnosis and walked away. Note to self, check to see if he is actually wearing a stethoscope. Or has a name tag. Or an adz.
I wandered out of my room with a file of papers that I had been handed and went to the checkout counter. The exit officer could not be found. In that it was Labor Day and all.
“Why do I have to see her?”
“She’ll just ask you a few questions.”
“I don’t know.” Well at least we were all on the same page.
"Well, I'm leaving."
"Go get your meds and come back and we'll look for her then."
Yeah, that was going to happen. In about never years.
I walked across the street to the pharmacy and yanked all the packing out. I’d like to apologize to the motorists who unwittingly had to observe that curbside scenario.
I got my Ativan but couldn't stop the blood dripping long enough to open the bottle. I gave the pharmacist the I can make you look this bloody if I choose to look and he opened that fucking bottle so fast I didn't have time to threaten him with stealing the cash register. Sweet man.
I then found this box of Nosebleed Stopper for $7.25 and bought it. Notice how it says it's used in Major Hospitals. All but the one I was in, apparently.
Between the Ativan and the cheap box ‘o medicine my nose stopped bleeding. Something the doctors at Kaiser Permanente hadn’t managed to do in a total of 4 hours I did in 30 minutes.
I'm dying to see what they charged me or I might die from seeing what they charged me.
End of Dr. Soro chat.