I just wanted a glass of juice. I got up out of bed, left my two young children to snuggle, and trudged to the kitchen. I was miserable with congestion and cough and my body ached. I had spent the day before home ill in bed suffering from the combination of these cold symptoms and a severe migraine. My lips were parched and dry and I longed for a glass of cold orange juice. I opened the refrigerator door, pulled out the pitcher of juice, and poured it into a glass I had retrieved from the cupboard. The juice felt refreshing as it slowly slid down my throat bringing me relief.
I began to move toward the sink to rinse out my glass and I felt a definite dis ease in my body. I felt dizzy and my head felt congested with negative energy. When the physician later asked me to describe this feeling, I said, “It’s just like my head feels suddenly full of static and just … well, full.” As an individual who would like to fancy herself a writer, this description is sorely disappointing. However, given more time to contemplate this feeling and try to put the perfect words to this overwhelming dizziness and heaviness, I still come up lacking.
I stood still for a moment and tried to steady myself as I was overcome by this dizzy, indescribable feeling. I felt my knees weaken and they bent slowly. The glass of juice fell from my hand and the last drops poured out on the kitchen floor. My body crashed down upon the flooring and I blacked out for just a few moments. I opened my eyes when my dog began licking my face, after first eagerly scoffing the sweet sticky juice to my side. I closed my eyes again, opened them, stared off not unconscious, but not fully aware of my surroundings and the situation either. Eyes closing, eyes opening, head still spinning, body still flat on the floor, head and feet jerking and twitching between moments of waking of fading. This is how I existed until my husband came in the home and to my side.
He brought me slowly to an awake state, though I was left with an extreme exhaustion. While I still lay there unaware, he checked on the children, called my employer, and called my mother. This was the second time an episode like this had happened in the week. And this time, unlike all the others in the past, I was home alone with our two tiny children. My husband woke me, and put a pillow beneath my head. He was asking me questions when I heard my four month old son crying from the next room. When I heard his tears, I erupted into tears of my own. I sobbed and shook in fear – a fear greater than that I felt prior to falling upon the floor.
“My babies. My babies," I began to cry and repeat. What if I hadn’t been holding a glass of juice? What if I had my son in my arms? I didn’t want to consider this. I don’t want to consider this now because the thought terrifies me. Therefore, through my sobbing, I demanded that we go to the clinic as soon as possible. This isn't a full seizure as I've had those before. It's a strange, debilitating feeling that frightens and confounds me. I need answers because I need assurance that I won’t collapse while I’m caring for my children. My husband came back home that day only because I had called him earlier to let him know I was still feeling ill and out of sorts.
I yet remain feeling out of sorts, but improved enough to compose this story. I am improved enough to express enormous gratitude for my husband and my children. I am grateful that my husband will do what is necessary to ensure my health and the safety of our children. I am grateful for my beautiful daughter, who sat next to me in bed, caring for me while I remained exhausted all afternoon.
So, what now? Yesterday, there was blood work. Today, there was a C/T scan. And now “we play detective,” the exact phrase of the physician. We play detective … and we pray.