This is a true story that happened to me in June 2011…every year I re-post how I became…BATGIRL!
I drove myself to the emergency room. Feeling a bit like a fool and also feeling like I was saving my own life.
I felt my cheeks blazing a bright red as I stood a pertinent distance behind the man in the wheelchair at the ER check-in desk agonizing about the sharp pains he was having when he …well…I was probably standing a little too close and he was probably talking a little too loud. After his groaning self had been wheeled off to a room, I took a deep breath that filled me with resolve and I walked up to the check-in desk where I made sure I lowered my voice as I leaned in and said, “please don’t send me to the psych ward, but I got bit by a bat and need to get a rabies shot.”
They didn’t laugh, but I could tell that they were entertained. After their previous customer, I think I would have been too.
I was taken to a room where I sat and explained my story to quite a number of different medical professionals. I have a feeling the ER was slow that day and not only was I the sanest person there, but also had the most interesting “case”. I cannot tell you how many times I heard the phrase, “I’ve never met anyone who has actually been bit by a bat before!”
Yes, thanks very much people, I’ll be here all day, apparently, unless someone wants to get around to treating me? Anyone else on duty wanna hear my freaky bat story?
A few people asked me why I didn’t catch the bat and keep it to have it tested for rabies. To which I had to restrain myself from retorting, “Gee, I just didn’t happen to have my gardening gloves, hockey mask, butterfly net, and bird cage on me while walking to the ice cream shop with my family.” Instead I reeled in my emotions and calmly told them I didn’t realize I had been bitten until well after leaving the area.
I had to fill out paperwork for the county so they could put on record that there had been a bat bite in the area. One of the questions asked if I knew the “pet name” of the animal that had bitten me. Umm…that would be a no.
Since the bite occurred on my ankle, where there is mainly bone rather than muscle or fat, he had to do 8 subcutaneous injections encircling the bite on my ankle. He was absolutely shaking and terrified as he warned me that this serum was one of the most painful shots when injected. I assured him that I had a very high pain tolerance and could handle it, but his arms were shaking for each shot nonetheless. Partly because the tiny needle was having a hard time penetrating my leathery ankle skin (each time, he would push and push until I heard a little “pop”…like the sound you hear when you are piercing a Capri Sun and the straw finally breaks through the little silver lining). Then he had to hold the needle in place and push with all his might to try to get the serum to come out of the needle into the bony void around my ankle bone. Honestly, I barely felt a thing besides empathy for this poor big bear of a guy who was battling a teeny tiny needle.
After the shots encompassing my ankle were complete, I got to enjoy a shot in each thigh and my right buttock. Poor intern. No one should have to look at my stretch-marky buh-boomba.
Before I could be released, I was made aware of the SCHEDULE of ensuing shots I would need to get to finish the series.
Despite all the injections I had endured that day, I wasn’t done yet. Not by a long shot.
…to be continued…