Thursday, October 04, 2007

I Beg Your Parden

"I never promised you a Rose Garden"...this is the song that has been playing in my head, swirling around me like a silken scarf, as I busy myself with small morning chores.

I cannot sit for long, you see...or lie down...or walk, with any comfort. I itch, is what I do. Everywhere. I have had an allergic reaction to Hydroxychloroquine...a medication prescribed for Rheumatoid Arthritis...and other diseases.

I didn't know why I was itching, for a couple of days. And then, after I scratched...welts appeared, thousands of them. I felt nauseous as well...

I stopped taking that pill. My doctor tells me it was a side effect he hoped wouldn't happen. He was dispirited...we had tried everything else. My body reacts to anti-inflammatories, in different ways, high blood pressure being the usual effect to watch for.

But hives? I've never had hives before. My friend DB suffered through a case of Poison Ivy recently. I remember thinking the rash must be like measles or chicken pox.

Measles has nothing on hives, if there was to be a contest.

Sleep is next to impossible. I have tried various remedies, and they work a bit for awhile. Then I happen to turn or otherwise disturb my skin...and a raging conflagration of itching begins.

And to make health matters a little worse, yesterday I was diagnosed with cataracts. I am suddenly prone to what I used to believe were "senior's maladies".

How did I get here? Wasn't I just 18 not so long ago? I certainly don't feel any older, although the calendar would beg to differ.

These were the thoughts running through my head, last night when I couldn't sleep. And then I went a little further. I began to stew at the unfairness of it all. I worked up a good, old, self-righteous anger, shaking my fist at Creator. Why me?... I asked....Whatever did I do to deserve all these things that happen, as I age?

Perhaps you might know what I'm talking about...a rant in the mind that has a lot of "me's" in the dialogue.

And while I was on the subject, I told him...How come I can't find anything to soothe the Itch? Switching to abject misery, I asked for help...and then as a furious attack of Itching began again...I begged for help.

As I drifted into an uneasy sleep, I felt an awesome weight if huge Boulders I had unconsciously begun carrying had been taken off me...and I knew some answers would come.

Upon awakening, I found a cream that helped...and then I took a dreaded antihistamine, something I had not taken for years, since they had a bad habit of putting me to sleep for a few days and also a side effect of displays of temper.

I was desperate...and I kept hearing the name of the antihistamine I was to take. I took it, finally, convinced it was going to make matters worse. But it didn't. It worked.

Would Creator give me the name of something that wouldn't have worked?

Many messages come to me in the words of a song I haven't heard for awhile. If a song suddenly pops into my mind, I have learned to take note of the words.

What are they trying to tell me?... I ask myself. What are the rest of the words to the song? And if I don't know them, other than a refrain, I will look up the words. I have never regretted it. I have always received exactly what I need to hear at the time.

As I made coffee, I heard the song..."I beg your pardon, I never promised you a Rose Garden, Along with the Sunshine, there's gotta be a little Rain sometimes."

I got the message.

I still have the hives; I still have cataracts; I still have RA...but I am no longer in a well of Self-Pity.

Self-Pity is just an excuse to do nothing about the situation.

And as the message says...I beg your pardon...but get with the programme. Be grateful for the good and accept the bad. Shelve the Pity Pot.

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving, Everyone!


  1. I had the same thing, not as a reaction to medication - in fact they've never worked out quite what it was - but the antihistamines I took helped. I don't like to take medication at all if I can help it, don't want my already unfit body to get clogged up with pharmaceuticals, but if it works sometimes you need to go with it....

    Hope you're feeling much better.

    I like the phrase 'florid multiforma euticaria' but when you end up looking like a 3-d map of the globe and itching like the dickens it looses its romantic element :-)

    Happy Thanksgiving, and may every day have a little something to give thanks for!

  2. I hope your hives clear up very soon. Happy Thanksgiving to you!

  3. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Wonderful song to tie into your woes. Glad there was finally some relief. I've had an allergic reaction with hives as a kid and then when undergoing an iv antibiotic infusion.

    I think of "How did it get so late so fast" when these little reminders crop up, but cataracts? You are way to young for that. Least they can fix that problem.

  4. Dear Marion,

    I feel for you, my dear! I have a form of RA, and I know what you're going through. You will get through this. I hope you are feeling much better by now.

    Happy thanksgiving!

    Miss T

  5. Alastair,

    Yes, sounds like an exotic flowering plant! It lost its romantic element, however, for me awhile ago, lol!

    When I looked it up, it said it can last for six weeks. So far, antihistamines have helped, but it's still there.

    Quite tiresome!


    I am thinking positively...every night I tell myself it will be better in the morning, and I think it is, a little. As Alastair mentioned...just a little something to be thankful for!


    I thought it was my glasses. There was a film of something like vaseline that occurred at times. But it was, indeed, cataracts, although I chose not to fix those for awhile. Firstly, I'm chicken, and secondly, it's not bad enough yet, I don't think. This might tie into the chicken part, however, lol.

    I didn't think I was old enough for cataracts, either...

    Miss T,

    It's great to see you!

    I thought I had forever, before any of these kinds of disease showed up. It takes a huge amount of acceptance, but I noticed when I fought against it, the pain, etc. grew worse.

    So much easier to accept and be grateful that it is not much worse.

  6. This growing older business is getting to me too, Marion. They tell you about it early on but you don't believe it of course. Until suddenly you wake up one morning and realize it's gone and happened. I think what catches you out is the way that life seems to speed up as you get older. Years used to take a year to happen but these days, they seem to be over in five or six months. No wonder you seem to age so quickly all of a sudden...

    I find that the best way to put up with all this is not to think about it. Live in the moment, instead of in the head. Then it's always *now*, the same as it's always been, the same as it always will be. Then regrets no longer make any sense...

    I hope your itching gets better soon. It's great that the Universe sent some help. The cacti pictures are very appropriate - ouch!

  7. What a lovely post. You have an amazing spirit. I had a cataract when I was only nine, because of an injury but still. My mom recently had her cataract removed and her eyes fixed and she now sees better than ever, with no glasses for the first time since she was four. Can you believe that? Have you heard of Dr. Weil, he has a website, He believe you can use foods as an anti-inflammatory, by avoiding some foods and eating others. I have found his advice very helpful, but then again I don't have arthritis, I don't imagine it works as well as medication but it is something that you can try, for free, with no side effects.

  8. Antihistamines can be a godsend, as my wife uses them. You can get types that dont make you sleepy.
    Wanting to scratch and knowing that you mustnt is horrible. Hope you are over the worse by now.

  9. Happy Thanksgiving - albeit late. I hope this finds you feeling better.

    One of my favorite natural remedies is the Alveeno (oatmeal) bath. I have used on a lot of patients, and they find it very soothing.

  10. Simon,

    When I am consciously in the now, time slows...sometimes, if I am busy in the garden, and have managed to finish a whole bunch of chores, I will be so surprised to note very little time has passed.

    And life is so much easier 'in the now' you say, there is nothing as peaceful as being right here, right now. I really have no way to describe it.


    I am a true believer that foods I ingest can upset the apple cart, so to speak. I have read some of Dr. Weil's books...he lives close by on one of the islands here, and gives lectures at some of the retreats here.

    Next week, I intend to see my Naturopath; I will start on a cleansing diet, and then try deleting foods known to cause inflammation.

    My eye doctor assured me they do that now, they actually fix the whole thing now so glasses are no longer necessary. As I edged towards the door, I said great, I'll let you! Gotta think about that one, I am a big scaredy-cat when it comes to surgery of any kind, lol!

    One of the really good things about this whole affair is that it made me use those antihistamines that I wouldn't try before. I hung on to the memory of years before, and my reaction to them then. But I have allergies. Suddenly I discover I have so much more vitality since I took them. My eyes are clearer, and my sinuses feel great! Who knew?

    Aveeno is great, I used a whole bottle, their oatmeal soap, their anti-itch cream, etc....but at the height of this Itch, it would work for a minute or two, giving some relief, and then the Itch would furiously attack again.

    Now that the Itch has receded somewhat, it is working well again. Another is Calendula cream, on me that stuff is amazing, second to none. A bit of Oil of Oregano on the worst of the hives helped, as well.

    Thank you all for your concerns and well wishes...I still itch, still can't wear woolen clothing, but it is healing.

    Life is good!!!!!

  11. What a fun time of our lives we lead now. Maladies that belong to other people now belong to us. Skin problems, sleep problems, eye problems, problem problems. It is nice to be able to sit and figure out how aid our bodies. The frustrating part is that our head won't join in the game and we have to get the old nogging to go along and play. Then it becomes a little eaiser to have more in the mix. As I sit and squint at what I am writing and look at the new spots on the back of hand, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.

  12. Happy thanksgiving Marion. I'm sorry to hear about the reactions you're having to your medication. Have you tried calamine lotion to soothe the itching? You can buy it from most chemists. I think you should be able to buy it in Canada. I don't know if you've ever tried herbal products for Arthritis. Glucosamine is good and also Devil's Claw. Green lipped mussel is also good and none of these products have the side effects of anti-inflammatories. Over here they do laser surgery for cataracts. Some people say their eyesight is so much better when they've had it done and don't need glasses any more. I love that song about a Rose Garden. It's just the sort of song to cheer you up and take your mind off things. Take care Marion.

  13. Sounds like it all worked out, more or less. I started feeling old and creaky at 45, I am now 60 and it has leveled off to a smooth numb feeling.
    Yoga seems to help, at least the moves I do which are just really stretching. Anything formal and I get impatient and look around for reason.

    I am headed to hot springs and alledged relief, so maybe that'll work!

  14. Dave,

    I got those brown spots, too. And I squint, but now I know why, lol!

    I took my body for granted, for so much of my youth. It worked so well, it was easy to deny the ageing part.

    I've got to learn to listen and take care of body parts more, now.


    Thanks for the tip about green lipped mussels, I will look that up. Glucosamine works for me; Devil's Claw is one I haven't tried as yet. There are many more natural remedies, it just takes finding them and trying them out.

    My doctor told me that they can do laser surgery where they fix your eyesight at the same time! Isn't that a marvel.

    Still gonna wait. lol


    That smooth numb feeling sounds great...there is hope, lol! At one time, I took Yoga classes regularly; am unable now to keep up with the class. So, as you say, I do mostly stretches. They really help, and so does regular massage therapy. No cures, but makes it more manageable.

    Those Hot Springs are just the ticket. I was going to use the hot tub the other day, until Graham reminded me of the hives. That hot water would have made me itch something fierce, lol!

    But any other time, I love it!

  15. Oh Marion, I started itching all over just reading what you've been going through!! I've had hives before, and I'll agree they're worse than the poison ivy itch, because they are everywhere. I'm glad you finally gave in and used the antihistamine. That's really the only thing that would ease that kind of reaction very much.

    As for getting old all at once, move over, as I'm on that same pew now. Seems like every day I find something else to remind my head that my body is not the same age as my thinking. I still think like a young person, I just don't live in a young person's body anymore. PD hasn't helped that, either.

    Hope you continue to improve.

  16. DB,

    If anyone is an inspiration to me, you most definitely are! You are an amazing have taught me much about caring for a body that gets a little worn down.

    The hives seem to take their own sweet time in leaving entirely. There are days where that itch comes back, not quite as badly, just enough to remind me it's still there.

    Ah, well. It gets better every day, even so.

  17. Happy Canadian Thanksgiving.

    Sorry to hear about the hives and cataracts.

    They say Vit C and Glutathione are excellent in preventing or slowing down cataracts. Blueberries and other dark berries also excellent. I agree with marsha, Dr Weil is excellent.