August 25 I was scheduled to get my shingles shot, unfortunately on August 1st I developed shingles, the same virus that causes chickenpox; it lies dormant in your nerves. If you need a shot, my advice is to do it now!
A horrible rash covers the right side of my abdomen around to my spine. Mine is a very severe case in which the nerve pain has been constant. It is excruciating — stabbing, burning, throbbing, shooting up into my chest and down into my leg.
At one point the pain was so severe it caused me to pass out; when my husband couldn’t wake me he called 911, an ambulance took me to the ER. I was dehydrated but my heart and blood work were fine so they sent me home. Nausea and vomiting keep me from eating properly—ice chips for breakfast, broth for lunch and whatever I can hold down for dinner. Pain medication seems to do no good and the narcotics I was prescribed, which I took for a few days, made even more ill with the side effects, I so I stopped taking them. I get very little sleep at night, no position is comfortable. The rash is now blistering and feels like burns.
Late one night, I literally felt my life force slipping away, with no energy to hang on I was ready to let go; it was the darkest moment of my life. It was probably the narcotics talking, but I told my husband goodbye. He said “You are not going to leave me!” and dragged me out of bed, held me up and made me walk—the first steps on my journey back to feeling alive again.
I explained away all of my early symptoms and did not want to go to the doctor with just muscle aches and pains. Then my temperature dropped, I had chills, and a little rash appeared—no big deal I thought—but over a few days it covered the entire area. A doctor at an urgent care office diagnosed me, prescribed some meds, and said that I’d be all better in 10 days. Well, today is day 21.
I had no idea that you must be treated within 72 hours of when the rash first appears, otherwise you could suffer permanent nerve damage and experience pain for the rest of your life. My pain continues day and night, nausea and headaches infringe on the quality of life, but I am hopeful that I will feel well again and be pain-free soon.
It has been difficult to sit up and type these words, but I am committed to this blog; this is what is going on in my life right now, and I simply wanted to share this personal experience. Had I known how devastating this disease can be, I would certainly have had the shot years ago.
Feel free to share this blog with anyone you think might benefit.
Please say a prayer for me: for the pain to subside and for my complete recovery. Thank you so very much, from the bottom of my heart!
Also, thank you for joining me on this journey. See you next time…
Blessings, Love & Light,
Touch a Heart with TIA
Copyright 2015 Cathy W. Lauro