May Mayhem

Ok. So I’ve started about 4-5 different blog posts in the past few weeks and haven’t managed to finish/publish a single one. Slightly disappointed about it, but I suppose it was fair given everything that has happened since the beginning of May.

If you want to backtrack a little further back, here is a list of all the things I have done in the past few weeks:

  • Travelled cross-canada all by myself (details to come)
  • Moved back to Moncton
  • Went home to Chéticamp to mourn a close relative with family and friends (blog post in the making)
  • Started my new job at the zoo (more info to come!)
  • Made a road trip to visit my step-sister
  • Had my first awkward ex-boyfriend encounter
  • Celebrated one of my best friend’s 25th birthday
  • Made lots of new knitted items for a craft fair coming up in July (more about that later)
  • Had my mom come visit for Mother’s Day!
  • Got bit by a cat (not mine, for once)
  • Got bit by a dog and ended up in the ER
  • Surprised my boyfriend by being at his parents’ house when he got home from Alberta at 5:30AM Friday morning

I know you all probably want to know more about all of these excited moments in my life, but some points are just to overview what’s been happening, half of which is already mentioned in blog posts I have yet to finalize so they’ll be up soon enough with lots of info for your reading pleasure! In the meantime, let’s focus on all the crap from the month of May – and it’s not even half over yet!

So it all started with birthday celebrations, which was awesome because it meant I got to see so many of my friends at the same time/place! Also, I think a party was much needed after moving back to Moncton. I had lots of laughs during the night and got to catch up with so many people, some of whom hadn’t even known I had been living in Alberta! Maybe it goes to show I haven’t been communicating quite as well as I had hoped.

On another note, I got asked to participate in an Arts & Crafts Fair in my hometown in the middle of July, and luckily, my days off are aligned with the event! So if you’re in Cape Breton the weekend of July 15th-16th, come visit me and browse through all the new products I’ve been making these past few months! It’ll be a great road trip I’m sure – I’ve already told Max that his attendance is mandatory because we still have so many things to do down home that we haven’t had a chance to do together. Top priorities: Mr Chicken ice cream (even though we had it last summer), lunch at Dancing Goat (just the best café EVER!), hiking at least one trail in Cape Breton National Park, go swimming at the Gypsum Mines (I’ve actually never been!), and go to the local pub (because Maxime has never been!).

But then after that is when all the mayhem began. It started one night when my roommate Julie came home from work and says to me, “Carmen, I think there’s a lost cat outside. What should we do?” I walk outside with her to see the cat, and he – or most likely, she – did in fact look like a lost cat. It was super cuddly and had been hiding under my car, not to mention it did not have a collar. Julie suggested we bring the cat inside, but we hadn’t kept in mind the Kovu – my cat – was inside and that this cat might not be good with other cats. The main reason I hadn’t thought about it is because I’ve already brought in two lost cats into my house while Kovu was there and they never had any problems. Well, this time was a lot different. Julie brought the lost cat inside and dropped it a little roughly. The cat immediately started hissing and growling at Kovu, although he was calm and quiet. I grabbed Kovu right away and took him to my bedroom to try to calm the lost cat. Julie stayed with the lost cat and tried to get some pictures to send to the SPCA and to post online but it wasn’t cooperating very well. I locked Kovu up and went to help. The cat seemed to calm down a little bit when I approached it gently and let it sniff my hand. It rubbed up on me and I figured we were good. I did force a little to hold it in place so that Julie could take a picture, and when I let it go, it went to hide inside our coffee table. Julie started to get worried about not being able to get it out so I went in – obviously without much thought, I now realize – and grabbed the cat like I know is mostly safe to do so. Well, that cat was not impressed whatsoever, and proceeded to bite my hand while meowing loudly. Julie had already opened the door so as soon as I dropped it, it ran straight outside. We checked my hand out quickly, and it looked fine. The skin was hardly even broken, which is another reason I suspected it might be an indoor cat – it was not that strong. Julie was a little worried, both for me and the cat, so we cleaned up the two tiny marks on my hand with soap and hot water, with peroxide, followed by antibiotic cream. We also filled a small bowl with cat food and left it outside in case the cat was starving and had no where to go for the night.

I pretty much left that situation at that, although I had been sick for a little while and had developed a really sore throat soon thereafter, so I decided to go to a walk-in clinic when I wasn’t working. The doctor there was really nice and helpful, although he said that unfortunately there wasn’t much he could do for the throat given that it just looked a little irritated, not infected at all. He also swabbed me to make sure I hadn’t caught Cat Scratch Fever, but reassured me that it was extremely rare and that I did not really have any symptoms. And he suggested that I could possibly get my tetanus done up, because it had been 9 years since my last shot, but I politely declined given that I was not emotionally prepared to take a shot right then and there, all by myself. Although two days later, I slightly regretted not having accepted to take the shot because I had the misfortune of getting bitten by a dog on the nose.

It was so strange the way that it happened. I had met the dog before and I had never had any problems with him. I had even spent some time alone at home with him, and everything had gone well – at least, to my knowledge. The dog belonged to Julie’s boyfriend’s parents. They were dog-sitting for the night, and it hadn’t been the first time, so I felt comfortable having him in the house and felt like I knew what he was like. Later that night, he was cuddling on the couch with Julie and her boyfriend so I went to chat with them and pet the dog. As always, I made sure to approach him so he would see me and let him sniff me before petting him. He seemed to enjoy the attention and even gave me kisses. I turned and back up a little just a second later and BOOM! HE BIT ME! HE BIT MY NOSE!

It didn’t click in right away. I felt numbness on my nose, and for some reason, my body couldn’t process what had just happened. I just started yelling and Julie ran up to guide me to the bathroom. I hadn’t noticed that I was bleeding yet. When I first saw the blood, I don’t know why, but my initial thought was Huh, he must have hit me hard, it gave me a nose bleed! Julie then cleaned it up quickly and looked at the damage. “Oh good, it’s only two cuts!” My brain: OH MY GOD THAT DOG BIT ME! I HAVE HOLES IN MY NOSE! OH MY GOD! I CAN FEEL THE AIR THROUGH THOSE HOLES!

After we managed to clean my face some more, I was debating whether or not it was worth going to the hospital, but Julie and my brother insisted on taking me. They were probably right, I had no idea what I was doing.

We got into my brother’s car together, meanwhile Ross had already left in Julie’s car to get the dog back to his parents and figure out what to do next. As for us, we drove towards the french hospital as calm as possible. It’s at this point that I thought it would probably be a good idea to call my boyfriend, although I knew I was already quite emotional. I heard the phone ring once, twice, and then he picked up.

(Side note: he was driving from Alberta to New Brunswick, somewhere about halfway in the trip)

“Hello?”

I burst into tears. I decided to try to blurt the words out anyway. It mostly just came out as high pitched noises. I could hear in his voice that he was worried, but he wasn’t jumping to any conclusion and just calm said that he couldn’t understand me. I gasped for air and tried to force my voice to make the right sounds.

“I just – I – wanted to let you know… I just – I’m on my way… t-to the hospital… b-but I’m ok! I just – I – I got… I just – I… I got bit by a dog!”

Of course, I could have probably made a better effort to choose my words wisely. Even after calming down a bit and explaining that it was Ross’ dog, that it was at our house, and that he bit me in the face, I still did not give a clear image of what had happened because I received a text from his sister soon thereafter saying: “POOR THING! Max just called me!! 😦 I hope they can put it back in place!”

For clarification, the whole “hole” situation looked like this:

 

When I said holes, I meant like nose piercings, one on each nostril. I had told Max “It went all the way through!” What he had understood was that there was one hole, all the way through my nose. That sounds a lot more painful.

Anyway, we arrived at the ER and I grabbed a ticket to go to triage. The room wasn’t super crowded, pretty much as it normally is in Moncton. I was calculating I would be here for 2-3 hours, and if that worked out, I would still be able to get a good nights rest and go to work in the morning.

I went to tirage shortly after we arrived and the nurse did all her tests and asked her usual questions. She asked me about my last tetanus shot, and I told her I had had my last one when I was 16. She told me I would be getting one tonight then, given the fact that I had not only been bitten by a dog, but also a random cat just the other day. She led me to the administrative desk where I got my wristband before heading back to the waiting area.

And so it began. We chatted with a few strangers. I drank lots of water and went to the bathroom what felt like a billion times. Time went by and still hardly anyone was getting called in. Probably not a good sign. Then an old co-worker of mine walked in, luckily not with something too serious. She had just been really sick with a terrible cough so she figured she might as well get in to see a doctor since she couldn’t sleep. It was nice catching up.
Fast forward, it’s 2AM. It’s been quite a while since we saw anyone walk in to see the doctor. I’m exhausted at this point and my cuts aren’t even bleeding anymore. Julie comes with me and we ask one of the nurses how long she thinks the wait will be. She apologizes and adds that it will still be a few hours because there were some ambulances that came in, and the was only one doctor working. Ouf. I could be here until tomorrow morning. I thought to myself, Wouldn’t it be better if I just went home, got a good night’s sleep, and then went to the walk-in clinic? So I politely thanked the nurse, telling her we completely understood, and asked if she thought it would be alright if I headed and just got my tetanus shot tomorrow morning, given that my injury had already started healing and that my pain was very minimal. She said it would probably be alright, and so we headed back home.

I made sure to call Max to tell him everything that was going on, and of course I sent him pictures to make sure he understood what I meant when I spoke about my injuries.

After that, I basically just passed out cold until the next morning. Thankfully, Remi isn’t currently working, so I was pretty glad that he could come to the appointment with me – I’m not so great with shots.

We drove to the clinic around 8:40 to make sure to get there before it opened. I figured I would be able to see the doctor right away, but when I walked in and asked to see a doctor, the receptionist said she could put me down at 10:15AM. Darn it. More waiting. Fortunately at clinics like this, you can go home and come back right before your appointment, so that’s what we did.

10:15AM finally came around, although the doctor was a little backed up. It was minutes later when my name was called. My nerves were starting to act up. The doctor walked in to see me and immediately started prepping the tetanus shot, asking/telling me that I surely don’t remember the last time I took the shot. I explained to him that I had my last tetanus shot when I was 16, 9 years ago. He seems upset by this and tells me that I don’t require the shot since it hasn’t been 10 years yet. I explain that I went to the ER and the nurse told me that even though it wasn’t quite 10 years since my last shot that I should get it done given the circumstances. The doctor seemed to roll his eyes, not wanting to believe me.

“Well, you better not take it again before the 10 years is up.”

Oh yeah, obviously, I would looove to take another shot for no reason whatsoever… Jeez.

I quickly added that I’m not so great with needles, and he retorted, “No one is good with needles.”

Wow. So far, I am not impressed with your attitude, sir.

He gives me the shot, and even though I react like I always do – crying and slight hyper-ventilating – it wasn’t as bad as the last shot I had gotten. The doctor then puts a band-aid on my arm and turns to walk away.

I start to blurt something out so that he’ll stay at least for a moment so I can ask some questions. The only one that comes immediately to mind is how should I take care of the cuts now? He looks at me like I’m some sort of imbecile. “Just put some polysporin on it…”

He goes on, basically scolding me, saying I should have stayed at the ER, that my cuts are probably going to scar now. Like… what? First of all, way to make me cry again. Second of all, I couldn’t have seen the doctor until the following morning anyway. How would they have been able to help more than he just did? I mean, other than probably treating me with respect and kindness. Jeez…

Anyway, so I left it at it and headed back home. I should probably add that I was also PMSing, so you can image what an emotional roller coaster this felt like. I had to take a few extra minutes before going in to work because I couldn’t stop crying, although I think they were mostly just tears of overwhelm. My nose felt fine, and honestly was looking better than I expected.

After that, I ended up putting honey on my nose – according to certain online sources, it’s a fantastic way of helping minimize the risk of scarring and help speed up the healing process. I shit you not, it blew my mind how fast the my skin started regenerating. I put some natural aloe on the cuts as well, and it’s looking pretty good so far! Still have my fingers crossed that it doesn’t scar, but there’s not much else I can do but wait and take good care of my skin.

And that, lady and gentlemen, all happened within a span of less than two weeks since May began. Pretty crazy, eh?

Have you had any insane/intense experience since the beginning of May? If so, feel free to let me know all about it!