I almost died twice. Or maybe three times, I’m not sure. A week after I was diagnosed with HIV, I was also diagnosed with meningitis. I had to deal with both at the same time and that wasn’t pleasant. This was in 2008. In 2010, because I stupidly went off meds (that’s a different blog entry altogether), and I was not strong enough to fight against the meningitis from returning. It came back and I was in the hospital again for two months. That time, I had lost about eighty percent of my vision, could barely see, could barely read text messages on my phone and lost so much weight I looked like the younger version of Skeletor.
I had given up then. And everyone fought me to keep me alive.
I flew to Bacolod to stay with my parents to convalesce and after a year, I had horrendous migraines. It was so bad, and that’s usually my signs for meningitis that I had myself checked and the doctors sent me to the hospital again to treat me for meningitis. That’s a third time. Now, looking back, my doctors aren’t sure anymore if I really had meningitis or if it was more a reaction from my meds thickening my blood and not getting to my brain. I had similar symptoms but no real evidence that it was meningitis. But they kept me in the hospital anyway and anytime I’m there, I always think I’m a goner.
That’s why I hate hospitals.
Yesterday, I was just exhausted. I watched an experimental stage production Battalia Royale 3 the other night and it was so much fun but there was a lot of running around and crouching and it was physically demanding. The next day, I was totally exhausted and drained. Later that evening, I started getting a head ache. Massive. I don’t usually get head aches and I started to freak out.
Shit, this better not be the onset of meningitis again, I thought to myself. Not now. Not when we can’t afford it again — not like we ever could — and not when there’s so much to do and so many projects that are in front of me and I can do so much and really make a difference now. I was so mad at myself. Did I push myself again? I would take breaks. I would spend a whole day of not doing anything. Why was this happening to me?
So I decided I was going to sleep super early and just faint. I wanted to Rip Van Winkle my ass on my bed and not wake up until October. Not very responsible, but I thought I needed it.
If I woke up and the headaches continued, it’s off to the hospital for another spinal tap/lumbar tap and hope for the best. I’ve become so used to spinal taps that it doesn’t scare me. There are many great neurologists here that it doesn’t even hurt. It’s the lying down for six hours and not moving that pisses me off. That’s so uncomfortable.
I slept at nine in the evening last night and since I only need seven hours of sleep, I woke up at four thirty, just a few minutes ago and the head aches gone and I’m feeling so much better.
I was tired. I was exhausted. I’ve been writing non-stop and it is still relentless. I have to take it slower. I know I’m not the type but I got to find the second or third gear. I’m always on fifth. I got to pull it back.
That was really, really frightening. I got to pull it back.