Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Chikungunya survivor

So, let’s give a nice warm welcome to September!!


I can hardly believe that the fall is upon us yet again. Except that...there is no fall in Central America! So for me, the perpetual summer continues! 


It was a whirlwind week my friends. In other words, I can recall two times in my life that I have desired death. The first was when I was in 7th grade. I had the first and last migraine of my life, and I remember consciously thinking that if I had died in that moment, I would be peachy with it. 


The second time in my life that I wanted to die was....this week. I have always held a healthy dislike for mosquitos, but this dislike has bloomed and flourished into a thriving, living hatred. But to tell this story adequately, I’ll have to begin in Belize. 


So about three weeks ago, I found out I was coming back to the ES. Perfect. I had to get a few things together, I had to make a few purchases, and I found myself running a little low on money when I arrived to this country. Shouldn’t be a problem. I bought pastas and beans and other inexpensive and filling foods to tide me over. 


But, I had to leave my sheets and my mosquito net in Belize to get the weight down for flying. Alright. Not the end of the world. Sister W had an extra mosquito net that I could use, but it was a little small so it didn’t cover my feet. With the application of OFF, I thought little of the situation. 


Until Tuesday of this last week. I noticed a strange...rash you might say....on my arms. Red spots everywhere. I ignored it though, thinking I was seeing things. Within a few hours I felt pretty light headed and a little extra toasty. 


Sis W and I made our way for the apartment. I noticed that I was rapidly developing arthritis in my knees which seemed unusual given my age. Every stair was climbed in agony. Then...the cramping spread to my neck. Tuesday afternoon and night I was down for the count


Wednesday I hit the height of fun with a fever of 103°!!! What in the world? Sis W and I live alone and I don’t have any money! hahaha. Good thing there was acetaminophen in the house. All day I wallowed. I lay in bed because I could literally not move my body. Going to the bathroom was akin to running a marathon in energy exerted. Every muscle in my body screamed when I tried to sit up. And, I was freezing cold. So what does one do in this situation?


Deal with it. 


haha I tried to sleep most of the day. But I did nothing. I just...laid there.  Thursday was similar except some darling elders brought me Gatorade and more meds. Bless their souls. 


Friday I was feeling better, but it wasn’t until Saturday that I felt on top of things again. But Chikungunya is like a hurricane. Saturday was merely the eye of the storm. I noticed that evening those strange red dots returning. I was MORTIFIED. But as they developed, I realized they were actually hives. Not hives you get when you brush up against a mysterious bush, but hives that cover every square inch of your body. AND THEY ITCH. booooooooooo. I went off the chain at this point. I thought I was allergic to something I ate and I kept racking my brain. Nothing came. Then I was informed that I was actually in the final stages of Chikungunya. PHEW. ish. 


So basically, this is what I learned from Chikungunya. 


1. There was actually a mistake in the bible. In the book of genesis. God did not curse Satan to crawl on his belly. He cursed him to take the form of the most hated creature in my world. The mosquito. 


2. It is possible to be both burning hot and freezing cold. If I had not experienced it myself I would not have believed it. But as such it is. 


3. You need money in life. Even to buy things like medicine.


4. When you overdose on Benadryl because you realize you’re having an allergic reaction, don’t do it before church. I...passed out. I could NOT stay conscious. Great example for the investigators ooookkkk.


5. I was a braggart before this week, saying, 'I’ve never had to take a day off of my mission because I have superior health'. I ate those words this week. Be humble. 


So apart from the atrocity which was Chikungunya, I have little to report on. My Spanish is picking up even though I still often feel frustrated. It’s a slow yet sure process.


Good thing I had sweet Sister W to take care of me this week. Speaking of which, she is pretty young in the mission, and I guess I didn’t realize how much the mission has affected me until this morning. She was freaking out about this little baby larvae all over the floor in our kitchen, and I was kinda like...oh what? there’s larvae? And then I kept eating my cereal. She spent a good 15 minutes debugging the house. I’m just used to living among the creepy crawlies these days. 



Well everyone. There wasn’t much time for proselyting this week. And I couldn’t concentrate long enough to study, but I did watch 800 Mormon messages. All I have to say is that the church is with it! 


Man. Heavenly Father loves us. He is mindful of us. I may have felt absolutely terrible all week, but I also felt very comforted. I knew Heavenly Father was there. I could feel His love for me, helping me out when I otherwise felt pretty much all alone! Sorry for a lame spiritual boost guys, to make up for it, I’ll include this quote. 


Could I suggest that we see gratitude as a disposition, a way of life that stands independent of our current situation? In other words, I’m suggesting that instead of being thankful for things, we focus on being thankful in our circumstances—whatever they may be.

Elder Uchtdorf


Sometimes we mistakenly may believe that happiness is the absence of a load. But bearing a load is a necessary and essential part of the plan of happiness. Because our individual load needs to generate spiritual traction, we should be careful to not haul around in our lives so many nice but unnecessary things that we are distracted and diverted from the things that truly matter most.

Elder Bednar


So I guess I should be happy for chikungunya. 


Love you all. Have a super duper week. Stay healthy ok??



Sista Hirschi


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