Last week, during a brief respite in the late-August heat and humidly, I grabbed the clippers and garden gloves and attacked the landscaping around our house, pulling weeds and snipping stray shrub growth.
I would have been better off with the stifling humidity and let it go.
By Friday, the poison ivy was spreading over parts of my anatomy that I will leave to your imagination.
I applied an over-the-counter ointment to a few of those body parts to no avail. Just as I am incapable of getting “a touch of the flu,” it is impossible for me to have a mild case of poison ivy.
To our surprise, the “free” clinic tied to our health-insurance policy is open Saturday mornings and I was told to come on down. I asked for a steroid shot because this is not my first rodeo, and I know that a stout needle is what it will take for relief. They gave me the shot, and a week’s worth of pills besides. I was sent home with instructions to wash in hot water anything that came in contact with the perpetrator and that includes my shoes.
“If you can’t wash them, throw them away,” was the advice.
I braced myself, and advised Brian (and on Monday, my boss) that if I turn evil, it’s the meds. In the past, when I’ve on occasion come down with poison ivy, I became poison of tongue and disposition from the treatment. It is the oddest feeling to know good and well what is causing such an attitude tumble but be unable to combat the outcome.
I’m pleased to say that this time, whatever they gave me left my mood unscathed, and is continuing its work in drying up this stuff. But my sleeping habits, that’s another matter.
Yesterday I shot out of bed at 5:30 a.m. WIDE AWAKE! I was ready to TAKE ON THE DAY! Ah, I thought, so this is what it is like for people who are truly early risers, those folks we envy for their ability to wash and dry a load of clothes, take a long, brisk walk, read a daily newspaper or two, and a few chapters in a book, cook and eat breakfast, load the slow cooker for dinner, and have time to spare before I pry my eyes open at the slovenly hour of 7 a.m.
There was a brief time while finishing my last book and seeing to a baby Reggie that I thought maybe I was transitioning into that kind of person.
It was a complete false alarm.
Yesterday I got to work early, put in a busy morning, gave a lunch program for New Castle Noon Optimists, then had a busy afternoon and hung around town to take a photo at 6 p.m.
Once at home and after a bite to eat, it was raining heavily and I snuggled in on the couch for a brief rest. I went sound to sleep for two hours. Not the kind of doze where you are in and out and just lounging around. No, this was where when I woke up at 9 p.m., it was as though I had slept a full night and was ready to start over a new day.
My new day lasted until 2 a.m. this day.
I have a few more days of these meds left, and while I am clearing up, this isn’t kicked yet.
I’ve got to be more careful about the landscaping and hidden gems like poison ivy.
As a kid, I never got the stuff and I spent hours upon hours traipsing around woods, pastures and barn yards on bike, horseback and even barefoot. I practically wallowed in it. And now, a snippet of suburban landscaping is kicking my rear.