The Writer's Life: The Sting

Stars – movie and singers– insure body parts, so what about writers insuring our typing ability.

1a grableYesterday, I’m pulling weeds barehanded because I’m there and the weeds are there. All of a sudden, OW OW OW! Pain slashing up my arm, down the other arm and both legs. Ebbing a bit, then doing it again and again.

I get inside, get ice. Root around for anything else that would help, while simultaneously trying to figure out what happened.

I’ve had reactions to being stung by a bee (extreme swelling as a kid) and yellow jacket (ditto, plus shortness of breath as an adult.) I was told after the yellow jacket to keep Benadryl on hand. I did. For more than 20 years. At some point I threw it out because … well, 20 years.

I really don’t think this is a stinging instinct. No buzzing. No stinger.

I really don’t think this is stinging nettle or another plant. Just not that kind of vegetation around.

Figuring what the heck, I put Neosporin with pain relief on it and take an ibuprofen, because what can it hurt. Keep applying ice, which is helping the most.

Check back outside, poking the area with a long stick – no sign of a nest, no sign of stinging plants, no line of marching red ants, no hives. Nothing.

Other than the pain, which is still zinging up and down in a very annoying manner, I’m feeling better about this situation.

However, the finger is swelling and turning red. So, naturally, I’m trying to look at it with a magnifier. Kalli comes by to see what’s so interesting.

Slurp. Slurp. Before I can react. A third slurp as I yank my hand back.

At that point, I’m worrying about her slurping Neosporin with pain reliever in it. Not to mention whatever’s in my finger. Keeping one eye on her for reactions.

But darned if it doesn’t feel a little better.

Pour white vinegar on it, because, again, what can it hurt?

Try typing. Nope. Not working. I am forced to read (think lemons and lemonade.)

Sister-who-knows-all-the-Latin-names agitates for me to go to urgent care. Noooo. Compromise by calling the doctor’s office. Nurse immediately says, “Could it be a spider bite?”

Yup. It could.

I’m given to understand that unless it gets infected for some reason, this too should pass in a moderate amount of time.

I can live with that. So I’m wrapping up the conversation when the nurse says, “Just let me get all your info down in case something happens tonight. “

Ohhhh-kay. That’s a cheery thought.

That knuckle’s in an odd position from the swelling, but late in the day I figure out how to type without that finger. Get some writing done.

I survive overnight – yay! ‘-)

Phew! Disaster avoided.

So, what do you think Lloyds of London would insure me for – not my fingers, but my loss of time, because that’s the greatest sting of all!

4 Responses to “The Writer’s Life: The Sting”
  1. Norma Ainsworth says:

    How awful. Those spider bites are horrible and scary when you can’t identify which type bit you. I hate spiders. My daughter was bitten by a brown recluse several years ago and her description of the pain was graphic, i.e.,my blood is running like it’s on fire. I hope the pain will ease and you can get back to writing and gardening.

  2. Patricia says:

    I’m back to writing, Norma … still a little wary of weeding

  3. Jan Cook says:

    Finished my first read of yours. “Sign Off…” I live in Cody WY and am wondering what your Wyoming connection is. OBTW I loved the 1st book and just bought the other two.

  4. Patricia says:

    Hi Jan, Cody! I hope you don’t mind me stealing part of Park County to create my fictional Cottonwood County … or possibly I just added more square miles to Wyoming.:-) My Wyoming connection is a long involved story that started with a free airline ticket. I should blog about that someday soon — thanks for that nudge. It’s resulted in lots of stays there and making friends who help fill me in and answer questions, especially my “ranching consultant,” who is near Dayton. … BTW, there are 3 other books out right now — Left Hanging, Shoot First, Last Ditch — with Book 5 in the series coming out in mid-Dec. That’s Look Live. And I better get back to work on it! Thanks for your note.

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