Friday, August 1, 2008

On grape lollipops

When I was a kid, I used to dread going to see the doctor.

I don't think I feared anything other than shots except for the idea of simply going to the doctor's office. Even the issues of Highlights and the book of the illustrated Bible stories seemed sinister. Then there was the smell, antiseptic and waiting to penetrate my skin with a needle that seemed more enormous the more I thought about it.

In my case, there was something special about getting a shot and it happened every time I would go get one - and as a kid who got throat infections every other day, there were quite a lot. (Also this nasty "orange" flavored throat stuff I keep have to swallow as best I could with tonsils coming through my ears.)

Anyway, I would pass out. I would pass out so hard that my doctor would panic. Then I would be moved into an empty exam room where it was cool and comforting.

I tried to be tough. When my mom and I first stood in line, I would try to feel unaffected by whatever infectious disease was just injected into my shoulder. (Never had to have butt shots, thankfully.) I would try to will my brain into thinking I was tough and passing out would not happen to me this time. I would even joke about with my mom saying something nonchalant such as, "Remember when I was little and I used to pass out when I got a shot?" WHAM.

But then came the colors. Then the cold sweat. Then the air conditioned room. Then the extra lollipop (grape, mmmm).

I bring this up not because I've recently had strep throat but because today, I passed out.

There were no needles in my future or recent past. I just came back from my run of 1 hour, 15 minutes. I started seeing the colors about five minutes before I was finished. Then, just like when I was eight years old, I tried to be stoic.

Only it wasn't an air conditioned room, it was my air conditioned house. And I wasn't lying on my back with grape lollipops being offered to me. I was lying on the floor with the same cold sweat, the same desire for sugar.

MEDICAL FACTOID: It's not a seizure if you're conscious, which I was.

Theories are: 110 degrees outside; no salt intake; not enough hydration between workouts.

Anyway, I slept for about three hours and now I've got a pounding headache. But I've got a bag full of lollipops in the pantry.

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