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Dengue Fever and My First Missed Birth

Have you missed me?

After an amazing three weeks in Thailand and Cambodia, I returned with a souvenir:  dengue fever. 

I rarely get sick. 

This sick was serious business.  Two trips to Urgent Care, one trip to Infectious Disease, 2 chest x-rays, 12 vials of blood for various tests, two shots of pain meds, 1 round of Cipro, and 1 anti-parasitic med for good measure.  My husband missed work to care for me.  My mother-in-law and mom missed work to care for my girls.  It was a blast. 

The worst part:  I missed a birth.  My first one since I began as a doula six years ago.  I’m ever grateful to Laura Curry for rushing out at 1:30am to care for my client.  But I’m still dealing with this very uncomfortable territory. 

So what was dengue like?  Well, I understand why it is called breakbone fever.  It truly feels like your bones are being pulled apart.  I read that it was also called “dandy fever” because slaves who were forced to keep working when they had dengue, walked like a “dandy.”  I get that, too.  There were times when all I could do was writhe my hips constantly.  It reminded me of the way women rock their hips during birth.  On top of the fever and bone aches, my skin crawled.  Sometimes it felt like ants were biting me.  And I had trouble breathing because of the pain in my chest.  Plus I was a tad panicky since all sorts of bad things *can* happen with dengue.     

At least I wasn’t contagious.  Unless the rogue mosquito that infected me hitched a ride home.

Then, after the worst was past, I spent a week with low-grade fevers and what looked like (on the chest x-ray) pneumonia.  Several breathing spasms landed me with an inhaler.  That really stumped the Infectious Disease doctor since pneumonia is not a typical secondary problem with dengue.  Who knows?  But it seems to be better.  I seem to be better.

Which means, I will be blogging again.  I have several posts planned about my trip so I will detour from birthy/parenting topics for a bit and share some about travel with kids, the tooth fairy in Thailand, human trafficking, and the amazing Slagels. 

Right after I prepare for the class I’m teaching tomorrow night…

One response »

  1. Yea! Glad you’re back on your blog (and feeling better!) =)


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