Last night was The Lady's night to work late (teaches an evening class), so I had The Kid. I had fed her, just finished eating my own stuff (culminating with a **huge** bowl of mashed potatoes: four red-skinned, peels on, eaten straight out of the mixing bowl). It was about 7:30pm, and for the last ten minutes I'd noticed the back of my ears feeling hot -- like I'd sunburned them, or used some sort of soap that didn't agree with me.
All of a sudden, my chin under my beard started itching -- then my scalp -- felt like litle fleas nibbling at the hair roots -- then my arms! Thought maybe I was having some sort of skin reaction to something (I **had** pulled some weeds a few hours ago, while looking after The Kid). Itching like **crazy**!!!
Put the kid on the bed, put in one of her favorite kid DVDs to keep her occupied, and dashed for the shower for a full-body wash. Helped a bit. Just as I finished and was toweling off, Ralphie (the dog) ran in and out of the bathroom -- a sign that The Lady was home.
I called out to her that perhaps I should be taken to the emergency room, as I think I was having an allergic reaction to something. She came in to look at me -- and pointed out that my face was all puffy. I looked in the bathroom mirror: Indeed I was -- cheeks, chin, and lips were all puffy: I looked like Homer Simpson, or somebody's sock monkey. And by now, my arms were full of rashes.
I wasn't having any difficulty breathing -- thankfully! -- but I was clearly having an allergic reaction of some sort. Brought The Kid across the road to my in-laws, and The Lady drove me to the nearby (20 minutes away) hospital. The medicos checked me out, and the rash had settled along the underside of my upper arms (pink, with blotchy raised ''plateaus''of white within most of the pink areas), and the fronts and backs of my hands and wrists. Curiously, was not in the underside of my forearm, or across my chest (except near my armpits).
They gave me a shot of something, plus squirted some stuff in my veins; kept me there for an hour or so; and sent me home with some pills of the same stuff to take over the next few days.
So: That's my adventure. I wasn't **scared** at the time -- but clearly, I was rattled, as The Lady noted today that even when I smile, I'm still sad around the eyes. Still slightly puffy on the lips, cheeks just a touch, and some puffy-ness under the eyes. Also just a touch tired and my spoken verbal ability is just a little dulled: could be residual shock, or could be the pills I'm taking (''May cause drowsiness'').
Took a bit of an ''after'' photo this morning; **should've** done a ''before'' pic on our way out the door -- or, at least brought the camera. Pretty weird-looking, though: For an example, though, see the movie ''Hitch'' (Wil Smith; a decent enough movie, some funny parts).
No idea what triggered it. There was a three-hour lag between my weeding and my reaction, which the doctor confirmed is an implausibly long delay. And, I was preparing food, so I'd washed my hands several
times in between. And all the stuff I'd eaten (brownies, toast, mashed potatoes with spices, garlic powder, cream cheese, butter, and fake butter powder), I'd had before.
Maybe something bit/stung me? But, I didn't feel anything, and the skin reaction didn't appear to be concentrated in any specific area.
My best guess is that either the red potatoes were gentically modified (some people **can** have reactions to GM foods, as the synthesizing process creates proteins and sugars different from the ''originals'') - or, it could be that even though I scrubbed the potatoes, there may have been residual pesticides. So as to not waste the nutrients under the skin, I drank the water from boiling the potatoes -- four
potatoes worth of water -- so, maybe that
was it. Dunno.
Lesson learned: When I have an allergic reaction to food, the backs of my ears feeling sunburned is the ten-minute warning.
On brighter news, tonight is the first ''band practice'' for a church music thing that will (supposedly) happen on the last Sunday of this month. Our church has an aging population, so one of the pastors at our church wants to liven things up by having a rock music -ish service on Sundays that are the fifth Sunday of the month. I volunteered to play bass: The pastor has a B.A. in music and plays guitar, so he **way** trumps me there; and I've always been the bass player in any bands I've been in.
Looking forward to it. First time I've played music with others in donkey's years [Aussie expression]. :)