Saturday, December 18, 2004

The Burning Truth

My nose has always had this knack for spontaneously bursting into The Great Waterfall of Blood.

I get a lot of bloody noses. It isn't the cocaine; I always have. Like starting my period the day I leave for vacation, my nose generally starts bleeding at the most opportune time. First day of class. When I have no tissues. In a group of strangers. Sitting in the middle row of an auditorium. At the gym.

A few weeks ago, I finally had one of those last straw moments. I ruined a white boiled wool sweater. And made an appointment with an otolaryngologist. An ear, nose, throat doc.

My mom is a nurse practitioner, so I had some idea of what to expect. She told me that I needed to have my nose cauterized.

Cauterized? Say what?

Have the inside of it burned so that, on healing, the lining of my nose will be thicker and less prone to bleeding.


I go to the ENT thinking that he'll check out my beak, we'll schedule a cauterization and I'll psych myself up for the procedure when the time comes.

My doctor tells me that it needs to be cauterized. Fine.

And then he tells me that he'll be right back with the instruments he needs for the procedure. W-w-w-w-what?

I wanted to be anxious, but there wasn't enough time to work myself into a tizzy! He shot my schnoz up with an anesthetic (oh, the burn) and got busy. Burning the inside of my nose with an electric-powered magic wand and then with a swab of silver nitrate. Maybe sodium nitrate. I was (am) bad at chemistry.

The highlight of the experience was when the doctor shoved large amounts of cotton into my nostrils, told me to leave the cotton in my nose for an hour and bid me farewell. How humbling it was, realizing that I parked on the opposite side of the hospital.

My first walk of shame. In controlled dash (did not want to upset my nose/call attention to myself) through the hospital, instead of in knee-high boots and a mini skirt down South University on a Sunday morning.

I truly am a loser.

And I have spent the last three days picking pebble-sized, bloody booger masses out of my nose. Because they hurt. Not because it's fun.

I'm not sure that makes it any better.


Nikki said...

GAH!! Oh, my most heartfelt sympathies on the nose thing - I get the heeby jeebies just thinking about it.

I just got all your comments on my blog - thanks for coming around!! And yes, indeed - I read your profile and we may have been twins in a previous life. ;) I don't have a pet turtle, but I sure wish I did!!

And Eucerin (did I spell that right?) spray - thanks for the tip!! I grab some to try out tomorrow, and if it works, you're my hero!! ;)

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