He was two years old the first time I remember it happening. We were sitting on the couch when he turned to me and said, “Mama, I don’t feel gooood.” As he said “good” his last meal exited his mouth and ended up in my lap. Hurray. He had no fever and no other symptoms, just vomiting. As he got older and better at expressing himself, he said that his stomach stung. The events would last a day or two, then disappear for weeks, only to mysteriously return. This pattern has repeated itself for most of his life. One doctor said it was nerves. One said it was acid reflux. Another said it was atypical migraines. No one has had a solid answer and I’ve never fully understood my son’s discomfort.
Until last night.
Yesterday, I ate some 60% cacao chocolate from Ghirardelli. It was wonderful! Then, about 90 minutes later, 30 minutes after starting work, my stomach was suddenly full of bees. I got cold, broke out in a sweat, and was unable to keep anything down. Apparently, I was also quite pale (okay, so I’m Casper anyway, but I was paler than usual. Work with me.) I was pale enough that several coworkers asked if I was okay. They said that I looked like I was going to pass out. Frankly, I kind of felt like it, too. Thinking that the feeling would pass, I kept working; but, after three hours and several trips to be sick, I had to pack it in and come home.
I felt like I had a bad case of the brown bottle flu; but, I hadn’t been drinking.
Once home, I found that my core temperature measured 96.1, down from my normal 97.5 or so. My blood pressure was also low and my skin remained cold and clammy. Unable to keep even the anti-nausea meds or water down, I went to bed. I awoke this morning to find that my stomach is still full of bees. The stinging is now accompanied by a dehydration headache and sinus pain from the stomach acids that ended up there last night. (Lovely picture I’m painting, yes?) However, I’ve been able to eat a little oatmeal and am drinking some ginger tea in hopes that the worst of this really is over.
Do I have the flu or some other viral or bacterial issue? I don’t think so. I think that I had a reaction to the only unusual thing I ate yesterday – chocolate. (Let’s take just a moment to appreciate and mourn the tragedy of that, shall we? Not even kidding.) Before I cleaned up my system, I don’t think that I could eat anything with impunity. I think that my system was so wrecked all of the time that I didn’t know what was making me sick or irritable or whatever. Now that my body is clear of all of the garbage, I am better able to pinpoint when there is an issue and to find the likely cause. While it’s handy to know what to avoid in the future, the process of figuring it out is less than pleasant.
Nobody likes having an apiary for a tummy.
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