Sunday, December 18, 2011


At this time of year, my work is very busy, and my lunches, if they exist at all, are minuscule and rushed. Wednesday's lunch hour, I had to run off to Safeway, where I bought a pre-packaged lunch of hummus, crackers, trail mix, and some sort of couscous salad... I buy these packages once in a while, mostly when I need a break from my usual "cookies and donuts" lunch, in an attempt to feel healthy, or when need to feel a little smug about my diet. I distinctly recall the couscous salad tasting a little too vinegary, but I had no time to dwell on the details... I had to get back to work! I should also note that, despite the smart lunch, the (less than sanitary) teens at my work baked cookies and I probably ate seven throughout the afternoon.

On Wednesday night, I came home from work and had a bath. Halfway through the bath, I started to feel hungry and full at the same time, hot and cold at the same time, and totally, totally unwell. At first I thought I recognized the feeling as being way, way too hungry- a feeling that had a certain familiarity from my tragic teenager days where I would skip lunch in an attempt to impress the cool, eating-disordery girls that hung out in the smoke pit. After half a carton of blackberries, I knew I wasn't famished- it was food poisoning. I don't know if it was the couscous, or the cookies, but I was about to go on a unstoppable psychotropic journey of illness.

After throwing up for about six hours straight, I was attempting to get up off the floor when I started feeling tingly. Next thing I knew, I woke up on the bathroom floor, my head narrowly missing both the claw-foot tub and porcelain sink. I had never passed out before. It was weird.
Dylan was in Vancouver, so I was all alone, so I did the most un-independent thing I have done since I moved out of the house at the age of seventeen: I picked up the phone at 3AM and called my mom to come over and help me. I was too weak to lift a spoon, so she fed me ice chips and helped me off the floor of the bathroom several more times, well into the early hours of the morning. Mother of the year, that woman.

I took the next two days off of work. The first day, I floated from the couch to my bed. I ate three popsicles and drank a bottle of water, took several tabs of Gravol, and generally prayed for the sweet release of death. The second day, I was back in my sick day groove. I read magazines, ate freeze pops, attempted (fairly unsuccessfully) to introduce solid food back into my diet, and, of course, took more Gravol. I watched several episodes of Maury, and tried to count how many times a guest called him "Murray" by accident (at least three). I was feeling better, but I was still weak.

Now, I'm not one of those preachy anti-pharmaceutical people. If I'm sick, drug me up. Hell, double-drug me up. Whatever gets me through. Sometimes, this slightly backfires on me, and after two straight days of regular doses, I was a bit of a mildly-hallucinating zombie.... A non-nauseous zombie, that is.
I laid down, in a Gravol-induced stupor, in the late afternoon. I fell asleep with the TV on softly in the background. I drifted in and out of consciousness, wrapped in blankets on the sofa, and had filthy dreams of being spanked by James Spader. I awoke to the credits of 'Secretary' scrolling across the TV screen.
I fell back asleep, and dreamed of a man comprised of the combined body mass recently lost by Seth Rogan and Jonah Hill (Jeth Hogan?). He was a pretty cool guy. I woke again, as 'Funny People' was in it's closing scenes.

Point is, we have been getting Sundance Channel for free all month, and it took me until December 15th, and a very violent stomach bug, to figure it out... They should really advertise these things better.

~sarah p.

p.s. This little incident has also had the unfortunate consequence of turning me completely off of cookies, and this is the absolute worst time of year to be nauseated at the thought of baked goods.

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