Thursday, September 27, 2012

Almost as bad as having a heart attack on a plane. But not really.

Welp, I can't sleep, so I'll do some bloggie-pooh action.  I keep falling asleep in the car, and we spent lots-o-time in the car today, so I'm thinking that's why I'm all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at two in the morning.

Aight.  Day one of our trip to western New York to visit my sistah, Beads.  Startingggggg NOW.

So we got up at the buttcrack of dawn, got ready, welcomed our baby-sitter, and left while the kids were still asleep.  We flew to Salt Lake first, and then had a really long layover.  Mom and I played Phase 10.  She kicked my trash:

Ben caught up on some z's:
 And Dad did some reading:
He's just started selling a product called Tai Slim.  I'm going on it as soon as I get home, and I'm really excited.  I need to lose some poundage.  And hopefully this will help me along the way.

Anywho, I get Restless Legs Syndrome quite often.  For those of you who don't know what this is, first of all, count your lucky stars.  It's the weirdest thing.  Your legs just want to wiggle and move and stretch.  It's almost like they have their own minds.  It's especially bad for me at night and when traveling.  It's like the second I'm in a slightly cramped position, my legs sense it and go CRAZY.  When my legs get that feeling, it feels like I could happily and gratefully run a marathon.  Just throw on some sneakers and jog for 26 miles in the pitch black outside.  Seriously, it sounds like a totally made-up health issue, but it's very real and very horrible.  And all the womenfolk in my family have had it.  My great-grandma.  My grandma.  My mom.  And now me.  I get all the cool hand-me-down health issues.  Thyroid.  Depression.  Low metabolism.  I hit the genetic jackpot.

From what I can tell, RLS (as those of us in the know call it) seems to be very related to circulation.  Mine is especially bad if my legs are cold.  My grandma's remedy - she wore legwarmers to bed.  Those ones that go clear up to the top of your thigh.  My mom's remedy - she wraps a lap blanket around her legs very, very tightly when she goes to bed.  Like a mummy.  That warms them up.  My remedy - a hot bath right before bed.

But ya know, you can't always take a hot bath when it hits, like when you're in an airplane.  And the plane ride from Idaho Falls to Salt Lake was a killer.  I would drift off to sleep and wake up with a jolt to find my feet tapdancing on the floor without my express written consent.

My mom takes a medication for her RLS that has been a lifesaver for her.  When I expressed concern about our next leg of the journey - Salt Lake to Atlanta - she offered to cut one of her RLS pills in half for me to try.

Yes, I know it's dumb to take another person's prescription.  Trust me, I don't usually make such dumb decisions.  But I was desperate. So I popped it right before we boarded the flight to Atlanta.

WORST DECISION EVER.

It kicked in as we were taking off - horrible, gut-wrenching, sweat-inducing nausea.  Intense.  Horrible.  Within minutes, I was frantically digging into the pockets of the seats in front of me for a barf bag.

The medication lasted the entire flight.  Which means I was running to the bathroom every few minutes for about four hours or so.  I was in between Ben and a really sweet Jehovah's Witness lady, and he was on medication for his back spasms, so he was dead to the world.  I had to keep punching him to wake him up, dry heaving into my barf bag while I waited for him to groggily unfold his long-legged self, and rush to the bathroom.

Needless to say, my delicious Slamburger lunch no longer resided in my stomach.

Once, the stewardesses had their big old drink thing blocking my way, so I ran to the front of the airplane.  In time to watch an elderly man walk into the bathroom.  I asked a male stewardess (flight attendant?  Yeah) - in between dry heaves - if I could use the bathroom in the very front.  "No, ma'am," he said, "That's just for our first-class passengers."  Not kidding.  So I stood there, dry heaving into the bag, for a good 10 minutes while I waited for the elderly man to come out.

The female flight attendants were a lot nicer to me. One of them brought me a couple of cold, wet washcloths to put on the back of my neck.  Another one put ice in a ziplock bag, which stayed colder longer.  Those washcloths got to be boiling within seconds.

And the nice Jehovah's Witness lady actually offered me her pillow.  "It's been next to the cold window this whole time.  It will feel so good for you," she said, patting me on the back.  What a sweetheart.  For reals.  Would I have given up my pillow to a girl who kept barfing?  Ah, no.

Where was Ben during all this?  In Muscle Relaxant Heaven.  Dead asleep for the whole four hours.  (I was a little resentful.)

Just as we were descending to Atlanta, I was forced to barf into the actual barf bag.  But I did a good job.  I pride myself on my barfing accuracy.  I've had lots and lots of practice - a combined four years total of barfing when I've been pregnant through the years.  So I barfed neatly into the little bag and even sealed it up nicely according to the bag directions.  By then, Ben was finally awake and obligingly held the bag for me for the rest of the descent, until we finally pulled into the tarmac and could unto our seatbelts.

It was good fun, my friends.  Good fun.  Moral of the story - don't take other peoples' prescription pills. No matter what your legs are doing without your mind's approval.

I would count this as the worst flight I've ever heard of, but my mom can top me - she had an actual heart attack while on an airplane this past spring.  I  kid you not.  So she wins the Oscar for Official Worst In-Flight Experience.  (She is doing much better now.  But my sisters and I were fa-reaking out when we got a text from Dad, saying that she had a heart attack on an airplane and was in the Las Vegas hospital.)  Poor, poor woman.  Please tell me that I don't win heart problems as part of my genetic lottery.  Only time will tell.  This is why I exercise like crazy - for heart health.

Anyways, luckily, those horrible, horrible pills wore off by the time our flight took off from Atlanta to Buffalo, and I enjoyed a well-deserved nap during the last leg of our journey.

And now we're here!  Brianna is a ridiculously good hostess.  Seriously, nurse anesthesiology shouldn't be her field.  She should run a bed-and-breakfast.  We're talking mints on the pillows.  We're talking shampoo, conditioner, body wash, loofas, and a facial mask that we get to keep when we leave.  We're talking gourmet cupcakes waiting for us when we arrived.  We're talking silk sheets, which I am completely in love with.  She's even talking about having us keep the towels she bought for us to use.  Which I'm not planning on doing.  There is a limit to the selfishness I'll allow myself to revel in.  A girl has her pride, you know. :)

Kay, I'm going to insert the earplugs that Brianna gave to me to ward off Ben's crazy-loud snoring and give sleeping another try.  'Night.

5 comments:

Lyndsay said...

Oh, Kar, I am so sorry for your experience and also to hear about your mom, I hope she is doing much better. Hope your trip is awesome! I want to come visit your sister!

megan said...

I'm sorry you had such a hard flight!! But it's great that your sister is such a good host!:) Have fun!! And don't forget to go to the Thousand Islands!:)

lucy said...

I'm sorry but I laughed way hard, not because its funny, but u tell a good story. Next time u should try one of Ben's pills. That would be good times. I too frequently feel the affects of RLS. I don't go the natural rought and pop Ibprofen before I settle down. It seems worse the more fatigued my legs are. Good luck and enjoy the rest of your trip.

Mindy H. said...

Yikes! I'm sorry the flight was so stinkin' miserable, but I'm sure Brianna and Spencer will help you to forget all about all that with their wonderful hostess and host skills. They really do know how to treat guests. Enjoy!

And wave to Canada for me!

Jenny said...

oh that sounds like a miserable flight. i am so sorry! i hope the rest of the trip was much better. brianna and spencer rock. i'm jealous that you are visiting them! :)

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