Late last Wednesday I became aware of a sensitivity in my nose. It hurt when I touched it, almost like I’d taken a punch. The last time that happened was many years ago and for one day back then it was an unexplained event.
At the time known on earth as ”the pre-Kindle period”, I used to read in bed something called “a book.” I was halfway through some huge tome like The Winds of War and I didn’t figure out what had happened to my nose until I started dozing the night after the soreness had begun and the book tipped over, smacking me squarely at the end of my snout. At least I knew what had caused it.
Back to present day. By last Friday, my nose swelled up to twice its size…I tried to think if I’d told any lies and was suffering from the “Pinocchio Syndrome.” Generally I am scrupulously honest, largely because I am the worst liar ever and always get caught if I don’t tell the truth. Now I was beginning to look a little like a cross between Gipetto’s “son” and Rudolph-the-Red-Nosed-Reindeer, so I decided I’d better call my doctor. As luck would have it, she wasn’t in, so I did the next “best” thing.
I went on WebMD. By the time I had trolled its archives I was convinced that I had either facial cellulitis or some flesh-eating disease that I couldn’t pronounce, no less spell.
That was when I chose to go to Urgent Care rather than spend the whole weekend researching “swollen nose” on the internet.
The doctor, a very kindly looking man, didn’t think it was my sinuses, which he said looked fine…and that was my hope: that this was just the beginning of the sinus infection that was making the rounds of SoCal. But my nose wasn’t dripping or even stuffy and I had no temperature.
He was about send me home to “watch it” for the next couple of days. (It was getting so big it was easy watching my nose because I could now see it puffed up between my eyes.)
Foolishly I said the worst thing you can ever say to a doctor:
“Well, I went on WebMD.”
I think I caught him rolling his eyes but he was washing his hands at the sink and it was hard to see his whole face, but his body language spoke volumes.
Turning every so slowly towards me he asked, “So, what disease do you think you have?”
“Facial Cellulitis.” (I was so convinced this was my illness I’d actually thought of printing out the photos from the website and bringing them in with me.)
The next thing I know a nurse is poking a three foot long Q-tip up my nose and saying “This may be uncomfortable.” YA THINK??????
Dr. Kindly MD did a CYA. He proceeded to put me on an antibiotic “just in case” and then the miracle happened. Within 24 hours my nose went down to half its size and 36 hours later it was normal. All was right in Dr. Judy’s world…
….until Sunday, when I accidentally poked myself in the eye and caused a blood vessel to burst so that 75% of the white of my eye is now bright red. My ex-mother-in-law, God rest her sweet soul, would’ve called me “Il malocchio” which is Italian for the “evil eye.”
I don’t think I want to be known as Judy Papio Il Malocchio Mastracchio. Even though it is sort of catchy. And…I am staying off WebMD. I’m sure I’d think the bloody eye was a sign that my brain was leaking. But, maybe it is?