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Woe is StrepMay 12, 2007

Thank you for all your well-wishes, dear readers o'mine. I am feeling better, if only just the tiniest bit better.

I have strep.

I hate strep. I know, you do, too, but I really, truly think I hate it more than you do. I had it chronically, pretty much my whole life, 3-5 times a year as long I can remember. Then, in 2002, I caught strep in New Zealand, came home, and had it for FOUR MONTHS. They couldn't kill the damn thing. Imagine fever every day for four months, ulcerated throat for four sad, sad months. Antibiotics every day for four months. Nothing worked, and I had to have an "emergency" tonsillectomy (which in an HMO, means you wait for four months for the first "emergency" available surgery date).

So I had them out, which for you strep sufferers, is like thirty strep throats all at once. Never, ever believe the ice cream lie. It's truly awful. My sweet little mama came up and stayed with me and treated me like I was five which was all I wanted, and then I never got strep again.

Five years with no strep. And now this?

The worst part? My dad left me a comment on my last post, reminding me of something that I'd tried so hard to forget, that he AND his brother both had their tonsils out twice, because they grew back. So when I was at the doctor, I asked, "Does it look like I have tonsils? Even though I had them out?" She said, "Well, those spots look like they're on tonsils, all right. There's something there." Bastards. Stupid tonsils. Lala says it will be great when I lose a finger -- spontaneous regeneration! But for now, blearg.

So I'm grumpy and I can't go to Bolinas tonight to watch the band play and I'd had it all set up -- I had a room reserved for us up there, and I had Clara being boarded by my dog-walker's friend (different story completely, but just fifteen minutes ago, I heard a man in OUR BACKYARD calling for Clara, then I see him coming up on our porch, so I leap out of bed and put on my robe, then I hear him in the kitchen and then he's in the DINING ROOM, putting a rope-leash around Clara's neck and all the dogs are freaking, and I fly out and ask, "Can I HELP you?" because even in scary times I resort to angry-but-polite-waitress speak, because that's all I got, people, and it's Raul, the guy with whom Clara's supposed to stay for the weekend, but I cancelled with my dog-walker and she was supposed to cancel with him for me but apparently didn't, and I'm so glad I put my robe on, even though I didn't have the tie on it, since I dragged BOTH ends of it last night through the cream of asparagus soup Lala made me, and Raul and I had an awkward shaking-hands nice-to-meet-you moment while I desperately held the robe closed with my other hand. He fled out the same back door and out the back gate with the dogs barking at his heels, me not knowing quite WHAT to do. I suppose I could have let him out the front door, only he was gone so fast. Then I went in the bathroom where Lala had been showering and told her and she just gaped at me. She missed the whole thing.)

What was I saying? So yes, no fun for me. Whinge. But I am getting better, every day, and I just have to be patient. Lala's taken the dogs to the park, so it's quiet. Maybe it's nap-time again. Yes.

PS - I think I picked the bug up at the zoo, where I took Dylan last week. I have pictures. I'll show you soon.

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Comments

Tonsils can grow back? I don't want to hear that tonsils can grow back. I just had mine out a year ago. Desperately unpleasant experience. Get better soon, sweetpea. I hope the kittens are keeping you cuddle company.

Awww...so sorry you're sick, and that's so awful about the grow-back tonsils. If it makes you feel better, I had grow back wisdom teeth. I had all four pulled, and they they all grew back. Rinse and repeat. Feel better!

I, too, loath the evil strep bacteria. My son has it right now. I used to get it once every 1 1/2-2 months between the ages of 17 and 20. I developed an allergy to penicillin as a result and I had my tonsils out at 20. Sheer hell, unless you count it as the easiest way to lose 10-15 lbs in a week (except, I didn't need to). Tapioca pudding was about the only thing I could get to slither down. Well, that and I found that the juice from the olives was very soothing (must have been the oil combined with the vinegar and spices??). I'm going on 12 years with no strep throat, though (but I think I see them peeking out again back there).

Hope you get better soon.

So sorry to hear you are sick--still, when you got to the part where you confront Raul, I was in hysterical fits of laughter--but that's just me . . . so hoping for a quick recovery - all my love to La -- ron

Oh, wow. It's too bad that tonsil trick doesn't work with dropped stitches.

I'm so sorry you're feeling like shit, sweetiepie. Do you have to go in and have the little bastards taken out again? Should we park a permanently refrigerated Guinness truck outside your house if you do? Cause dude. Even if ice cream doesn't work, I bet cold beverages administered until oblivion ensues wouldn't be a bad thing.

Rachael, honey, I have no idea if it hurts to laugh. If it does, save the link below for a safer time. If, as they say, laughter is the best medicine, read on.

Just don't say I didn't warn you.

http://www.jerrypournelle.com/reports/jerryp/dogsinelk.html

Feel better! You need some chicken soup!

Oh! Poor you! I had horrible strep in my freshman year of college - 103 fever, the works. I actually had it even after I stopped being symptomatic - the only "symptom" was I was missing some notes in my singing range. My voice teacher sent me to a laryngologist, who diagnosed me with, "strep - still." Months after the acute stage. Awful. My mother is still talking about how expensive those antibiotics were. (Don't even ask me about the awful nurse who scolded for not having my childhood penicillin allergy re-tested in adulthood when I was wilting with my 103 fever right before her eyes (who knew you needed to re-test these things?) - just don't).

I have recurring sinus infections, so I doubly sympathize - the recurrent ick brings such dread, which makes everything so much worse...

Tonsils can grow BACK? Oh dear god I hope you're kidding. Seriously, I had mine out when I was 7 and they were the largest the ENT had ever seen. A 4++ on the scale, if that means anything to you. The tonsils of a grown man (a LARGE grown man) in my tiny throat. And now you're telling me it's possible they could come BACK? Oh jesus on a pogostick that's no good.

Oh, and feel better soon, 'kay?

Oh my god. Lala told me you were Death of Fun but I didn't realize you were willing to take it this far.

I hope you get better soon.

Oh man...I had recurrent throat infections for 2 years in college and then my freshman college year (in southwest VA, sick and cold and miserable), but was it strep? No, they were all different infections, staph or something. Anyway, after that they finally took out my tonsils, which as you know was awful, and I had lots of bleeding, ugh ugh ugh.

Finally got better, and a couple of days after I was better there was an article in the local paper about a dude who'd DIED after having his tonsils out because of all of his bleeding. Yeesh. My mom didn't like that very much. :P

Tonsils can grow back?! Who knew?? Well, I hope you start feeling a LOT better soon...

Aww, you poor thing. My mom's tonsils grew back also. Luckily, mine stayed gone, and I have only had strep once since I had them taken out, oh...13 years ago now.

Of course, that one time turned out to be scarletina, but that's neither here nor there.

You get better so we can knitaoke!!

Oh no! You get better quickly. And jesus. Stop regrowing shit.

Yes, you truly do hate strep more than I do and you have reason.

You're supposed to be all better!

I'm sorry you're sick! Feel better soon!

Get well soon!

Could it be possible you have mono?

I recently managed to get strep and mono (not a misdiagnosis--i actually had both) and a touch of pneumonia all at the same time. During the middle of final papers and exams.

I guess what I'm trying to say is..I feel your pain. :o)

Its so funny that you mention tonsils growing back because thats what mine did also! I was having chronic strep and at 22 I had them out. Yup, your right it hurts like a B*tch. Then when I was 30 I had to have them out again because they grew back. The ENT took all these pictures of them before they came out and asked if it was OK to publish them. He said that he had never seen that in his entire medical career. To bad we cant grow more arms and hands so we can knit more! LOL

If you can stomach it, try eating some raw garlic. Seriously. It'll burn like hell going down, but one of my best friends is a strep-throat-sufferer and she swears it works. If you can't handle it raw, you can mix it in some honey. Just try not to taste it too much. ;-)

As the "sweet little mama" in our family's tonsil story -- you know the one where you nearly lose a dear one because of a nasty, nasty, nasty strep -- this strikes fear in me. A fever of 105 in a young adult is not very pretty and the tonsillectomy was beyond awful for a wornout body. Shudder.

On a lighter note, just how does Lala envision you losing a finger?

You're so right about the ice cream! You realize as soon as the anesthesia wears off and then they kick you when you're down by saying that you can't eat red jell-o, only the inferior flavors. Feel better soon!

I'm sorry that you are feeling yukky. After your history, I can understand why you never want to hear the word "strep" aimed in your direction again. Get well soon!

Hugs. That is a terrible story. I hope things improve soon.

ugh! god I remember my battle w/ strep - 3-5 times a year for over a decade!! No insurance! I finally seem to have kicked the damn thing by seeing a herbalist who gave me tinctures to draw out the infection. supposedly people who get it often can actually carry it in their bodies. I also learned that the low level of antibiotics in commercial meat lowers your immune system's response to infection. not that you should go veg, but maybe go organic/antibiotic free for a while and see what happens. In the meantime, try eating the hottest thai food you can choke down. Really - the heat from the chilies has a numbing effect on your throat and all that heat helps kick in your immune response as well. plus a nice hot bowl of tom yum is really nourishing as well. get better soon!

OHMYGOD you poor thing! I HATEhatehate sore throat. I had strep once and then it came back once, but never since. It HURTS. I think you totally need chicken soup. The one from the New Basics cookbook, which you make with a real chicken. It will heal anything, I swear. I hope you don't have that HMO now and can get better medical care than then, too. Hugs.

I've heard that the older you are, the harder recovery is when you get your tonsils out. I got mine out when I was 20 and it almost took a year to fully recover. I truely hope that your's didn't grow back! How ghastly. I know I couldn't handle getting mine out again...euurgh.


Feel better.....melted icee pop thingies were the only things that sustained me through my healing time. Good luck!

Blearg, for real. I'm so sorry that you're feeling so lousy. Sending you healthy vibes - I hope it goes away soon. Poor schmoo!

Oh sweetie! I hope you feel better really soon. Strep sucks b*lls! And poor Raul...he totally experienced my nightmare as a dog watcher and sad to say that I have walked in on people once before. Here's to that being the last time!

Get better!

Lala totally beat me to it. Holy regenerative powers, Batman! To think what I could do with that! Bwahahaa(and actually, my leg DID grow new bone! But it wasn't quite a whole new leg lol).
Feel better...I was a 3-5 a year strep sufferer, too. I totally get it.

You and your commenters are totally ruining my fantasies of getting my tonsils removed. For a while I was getting really bad strep once a year like clockwork. I hope the monkey strep isn't as bad as NZ strep. Oh, and that raw garlic cure sounds good. Just think, even if it doesn't work for the strep you can just breathe of home invaders and send them running.

ugh. feel better soon. i had my tonsils taken out when i was 4 so i've been lucky and strep free pretty much since, except for once when i was in the 9th grade and ended up with untreated strep which the led to rheumatic fever which totally sucks. so take care of yourself.

Um, my mom had her tonsils removed three times. Hang in there. I hate strep, too, but today I hate the stomach bug more. So I'll whine along with you from the sofa I've just crawled downstairs to lie on. Maybe a shower would help. At least it seems the banana half is staying with me. Feel better, you, and I will too!

The idea of tonsils growing back is just horrifying. Things that are cut out of you body should stay cut out of your body. Are you sure you aren't part gecko? They're the only creature I know of that spontaneously regenerates like that.

Whinge all you want, you're entitled. Hope you get better soon.

Oh you poor little girlie! How awful! Well since we do live in California, we'll call this the Tonsilitis Diet since I'm sure your skinny jeans are beckoning...

Strep truly is the worst. It's the only time I've been reduced to tears while sick. Imagine a grown woman crying her eyes out....my children were horrified! Take care of yourself.

Whinge on - just whinge in soft, soothing tones that don't hurt your throat. As a chronic s-word sufferer, you likely already know this, but my brother went through a chronic recurrent phase and they did some sort of test to make sure he wasn't a carrier. Anyway, feel better!

Glad to hear you are feeling a little better, sorry that you are missing out...

I'm so sorry you've been sick, that's awful news if your tonsils are growing back. Get well soon and hopefully it's just a false alarm.

I too had my tonsils out as an adult. Misery! Hope you recover from the strep soon. I also wanted to say I'm so sorry to hear about Digit. As a cat mom I know how much he must have meant to you. Hope your new bitties help to fill the hole in your heart.
Jennie

Wow, that's so poopy, and it totally suckz that you didn't get to go to Bolinas. That's the WORST when you've been lookin' forward to something and then you get sick. The WORST!!!!!!!!!!!! Feel better soon!

Strep is the WORST as an adult... I hope you are all better now!!!

Sucko! I hope you're feeling better soon.

Ugh. I feel your pain. I was almost held back in third grade because I bounced between strep and tonsillitis the entire time. A whole school year nearly blown by the time I got my tonsils (and adenoids) out, and the only reason I got passed is because I maintained a A average, even though I missed the exact number of days that legally should have held me back (that and my mom fighting like a mama bear to get me passed). The ice cream thing is a lie. I hope you're feeling better soon.

My poor poor knitter - I keep checking back to see if you are blogging, but you must be just miserable to be away so long - I wish you health - be well, sweetie - you are missed -

I keep checking back too! I'm more of a reader and not a commenter, but generally worried about your silence and hope you are okay. At least you have lots of love around you to help you get better.

Please tell us you're OK! Strep is awful--I occasionally have a case of it. Stubborn and mean, it is. Take care and be well!

If some part of our body is going to GROW BACK why can't it be something Nice? Like a waistline? or a healthy bit where there was cancer? I think you are nuts to have run Bay to Breakers with Strep/chronic tonsillitis, but I commend you, too. Hope you found quiet time to knit.

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Rachael loves it when book clubs read her work! She's happy to attend book clubs that read her books either in person or via Skype. Contact her at rachael@rachaelherron.com to make arrangements.

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