The other day, I posted Chikungunya – you cannot begin to imagine … to explain what it is we’ve all been going through while suffering from this mosquito-borne disease with the funny name. I had been led to believe there is no cure for the virus, and while that still may be true, we’ve heard from several people now that they have been drinking juice squeezed from papaya leaves – a fruit tree that grows quickly and is predominant throughout the tropics. This juice helps to speed up the healing process and alleviate some of the more nasty symptoms. So Dennis decided to give it a whirl.
We read all about it online at this link.
I’ve now consumed two doses of this foul-tasting liquid (yesterday and this morning), and according to the others who have taken it, I should be noticing a difference within the next day or two. Unfortunately, we don’t have a juicer and the blender died on us, so Dennis had to “juice” the leaf using the food processor. It was a long slog, but it finally worked and I was able to drink at least an ounce of juice each time.
Here’s the photo proof:
So here’s hoping all that work to extract such a little, tiny amount of juice was worth it. I’m cautiously optimistic at the moment that I’m beginning to feel better …
Some friends and blog readers know that I came down with a mosquito-borne virus, Chikungunya, shortly after I returned to Bequia in July. This virus had been moving through the community at a fast pace until now, just about everyone on the island has either been suffering with it or is attending to someone who is suffering with it. The only doctor on the island was run off his feet seeing and treating patients, although other than recommending Paracetamol for fever and pain, and Histol for the rash, there was nothing more he could prescribe. Rest, and when you think you might be getting better, more rest. A friend who had spent the winter on Bequia didn’t come down with Chikungunya until the day she went back to Canada for the summer. Somehow she had managed to protect herself from mosquito bites until that last week, but then she was hit by it hard and it’s really affected the quality of her life.
Here’s what happened to me … I returned to Bequia on July 14th and must have been bitten that night (the virus takes 5 to 7 days to incubate), because I began feeling achy joints and feverish on the 19th – and Dennis had just left that morning for his trip to Canada. I went to bed early that night and did not have a good sleep, so not only was I not rested on the Sunday morning, but I could barely move around the house on my own, let alone make something to eat. One of the other symptoms though is a lack of appetite. I received a lot of sympathy from Dennis’s staff of gardeners and housekeepers, because they had all suffered with the virus at one time or another during the spring. At least I knew they knew I was here alone and offered to help me, if I needed anything. The fever only lasted two days and I have never even felt headachy since then. But the joint pain has increased steadily over the weeks to the point where it has been debilitating at times. I had the full-body rash, as well, but that went away again within 24-hours. What a sight, though! Red splotches over my entire body! Funny that it wasn’t itchy, either. Just unsightful.
I’ve had Dengue Fever before. In fact, Dennis and I both had it at the same time, and it was all we could do to get out of bed for a glass of water. Thank goodness the cats insisted we get up to feed them! Dengue is known as “break bone fever” because you feel as though your bones will crack if you move in the slightest. But what I remember vividly of that illness was the incredible head-pounding headaches and high fevers we suffered. I did not, thankfully, experience anything like that with Chikungunya. And Dengue only lasted about 2-3 weeks for us (although it is possible to catch Dengue a second or third time).
It’s the pain in my joints and the bones themselves that is making Chikungunya unbearable for me, and for everyone else I’ve spoken with who has had this. I’m now into the fifth week since I contracted it, and there does not seem to be an end in sight. I sometimes feel better and think it’s going away and then it just hits me twice as hard the next day. Sometimes my fingers are swollen and cramped up so badly that I can’t even type. (I have not been able to write with pen and paper at all!) Other days, it’s my knees that won’t work properly and I can’t get out of bed or stand up from a chair without help. Always, always, though, I have had an unbelievable pain in my right bicep that is not in the joint and not in the muscle, but feels as though it’s right in the centre of the bone. Of course, I’m right-handed, and I don’t have enough strength in this arm to lift and carry, or even to just do small things, like brush my teeth or hair. It’s difficult to dress myself (so I remained in pajamas most of the time, until it felt a little too much like I was lounging around the place …), or to hold and drink a glass of water, and definitely impossible to write. The pain is much worse at night when you would think that relaxing and sleeping might help. That’s when the numbness in my hands begins and it’s near impossible to get settled into a comfortable position let alone fall asleep. Even then, if I move the wrong way, I scream out in pain, waking up Dennis and the cats (although I’m now not screaming in sheer agony the way I was the first few nights …). Sometimes a hot water bottle helps, but generally I just have to hope I’ll fall asleep deeply enough that I won’t be restless at all. Taking a couple of Gravol sometimes help, but is no guarantee I will sleep.
The other problems I’ve noticed is that I’m not steady on my feet, but I also can’t sit for long periods of time, either. I need to get up and walk around just to increase the circulation again and to stop the numbness in my hands. And then there’s the lack of any exercise, because I just haven’t got the energy, and that lack of exercise is causing my calf and arm muscles to waste away. It’s becoming noticeable. And why-oh-why is this not causing my butt and thigh muscles to waste away, I ask you???? There is no justice!
The worst of it is that my mental capacities are strained. I’m lethargic and I find I’m forgetting more than usual, am not able to concentrate or even focus on anything, and this is the most I’ve written at a stretch that is more than a Facebook status update or short email. I can read, thank goodness, but I’m not sure I’m really retaining all that much.
It’s been a very frustrating 5 weeks, let me tell ya! And when I speak with others, that’s what they all say, too. We’re more incapacitated than feeling really sick. But we’re angry with feeling this way for such a long time. (Some have had these same symptoms I describe for 12 weeks or more already.) And, especially knowing that there’s really nothing we can take to alleviate the discomfort, we’re angry. The ONLY consolation we have is in knowing we can never catch Chikungunya again.
And, fortunately for me, Dennis has never caught it. He’s been looking after me all this time, since he returned from Canada. I would not have been able to survive on my own, that’s for sure. Those cats still need to be fed, regardless of how bad we may feel!
So that’s my Chikungunya story and an explanation as to why I’ve been so quiet on this blog of late. Today I have to say I feel a bit better than yesterday, but even while typing this, I’ve had to be careful of my right arm and the way I hold it. It’s beginning to become painful again now, so I will quit this. My right thumb is going numb, too. I just hope I’ll be able to fly back to Canada again at the beginning of Sept. I can’t imagine travelling anywhere, let alone on planes, feeling the way I feel right now.
Here are links that you might find interesting. And, please note, this virus is only transmitted by two varieties of mosquitoes that thrive in tropical climates. Let’s hope, for everyone’s sakes, that it does not begin to mutate in any way and spread even further than it already has!
Thanks to The Story Reading Ape for reblogging and bringing Chris McMullen’s blog to my attention. If your friend is an author, here’s how you may support him or her when they’ve published a book. Reading, comments and reviews are always welcome, but Chris suggests so many other ways you can do your part to support your friend, the Author.
Originally posted on chrismcmullen:
Amazing, Isn’t It?
Yes. It is.
How many authors do you actually know?
Now your friend is one.
The key word there is friend.
This was your friend before. Becoming an author doesn’t change that.
Sure, you can tease your friend about this, if your relationship ordinarily involves teasing.
But your friendship is based on more than just teasing:
- You support one another. Even if one of you writes a book.
- You’re honest with one another. Even if you think the book isn’t quite, well, you know.
- You know each other well. How to get on one another’s nerves. How to put things gently. So you can figure out the right way to share honest feedback.
- You motivate one another. So in addition to honest feedback, you’ll provide encouragement, motivation, and direction.
Your friend wrote a book. That’s a huge accomplishment. Treat it as such.
There are some things you…
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Here’s an initiative that I think has a great deal of potential and is worth your consideration, if you are an Indie Author. Sign up on the Published Indie Authors blogsite if you are interested in participating or wish to receive more information.
From The Story Reading Ape who is compiling more resources for authors and helping to promote themselves and their work. Reading Recommendations is proud to already be listed in Authors’ Resources Central!
Originally posted on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog..... An Author Promotions Enterprise!:
And would like to be included in my blog
AUTHORS RESOURCES CENTRAL?
I would like to expand the following resources
Author / Book Promotions
Having them as Guests on your blog
notifying your followers and visitors when books are on promotion.
Posting your reviews on your blog
AND other places like
Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, etc.
Please state preferred genre.
Please state preferred genre.
Professional Book Editors
Please advise editing type and preferred genre.
In all cases, please provide the following:
The name and FULL online address of your blog.
The link to any terms/conditions and application form.
The link to any charges/fees applicable.
Your photo and / or Logo.
To avoid disappointment
DO NOT leave the information in the Comments box below
ALWAYS SEND IT BY EMAIL TO:
tsraauthorarticles (AT) gmail (DOT) com
(address given this way to avoid spamming programs…
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Read about the terrific interview Tim Baker held with Mickey Jones on The Surf 97.3 Friday evening and consider helping Mickey if you are at all able to do so.
Originally posted on blindoggbooks:
On Friday August 1, 2014 I had the pleasure of interviewing Mickey Jones on my radio show (as I warned you about here).
Anyway – about the interview…
Just prior to calling him, I played the song Secret Agent Man by Johnny Rivers to get the listening audience primed – since Mickey was the drummer on that track.
When the song finished I brought our mics up and welcomed Mickey to the show, telling him that we had just played Secret Agent Man.
“That’s a good song,” he said. “Let…
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I’m reblogging this post from The Story Reading Ape, because he outlines EXACTLY the mistakes I’ve discovered that too many authors have been making when trying to promote themselves.
Originally posted on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog..... An Author Promotions Enterprise!:
As someone who makes online contact with authors on a daily basis, there are a few things that actually IRK me (not a pretty sight), so please excuse me while I arrange this soapbox more comfortably and elaborate further.
These irk-making issues are not unique to me and have been expressed by many people – including many non-irk making authors – so unless you want to LOSE potential readers, fans and friends, you need to STOP doing the following IMMEDIATELY on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Goodreads, Shefari, Librarything, et al:
Making your first contact with the immortal words:
Get my books at ***************
LIKE my FB Page at ***************
Follow my Website / blog at ***************
And similar well meant (?), but self-centred sayings!!!!!
Think about it for a few moments – WHY did this person start Following / Liking / Send you a Friend / Connection Request?
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