So I made it to San Francisco to do a Writing Workshop at Berkeley for the next week! Very excited (as you can imagine).
Last time I was here (just last month actually), I had my boys with me and as we were flying from Sydney to San Francisco. Two hours before the end of the trip, I felt nauseous, looked for the sick bag in the seat pocket, couldn’t find one, so made the bold dash down the aisle to the bathroom. Last thing I remember is my head on the floor and I was in dreamy la-las… I recognised that I wasn’t ‘supposed’ to be flat on the floor of the 747 plane, so I quickly got myself up not wanting to panic anyone. But the purser insisted that I stay at least seated for a little while to make sure I was OK. But stubborn me said that I’m fine, and that I need to get back to my boys, only to get up and faint right back down again.
The airline crew called for a doctor on board, and Marty from Philadelphia came to my rescue. The purser asked for his qualifications, and he said that his wife is an ER doctor and he has been on many a road with his wife and helped out at a car accident over the past thirty years, so he felt he was qualified to give me a ‘once over.’ He checked my pulse, my eyesight, my reflexes, checked to see if anything was hurt. He was funny, because you could see him thinking what his wife would be doing and if she would approve. He knew that he had to keep me awake as not to ‘faint’ again, so he told me his life story.
Marty happened to be a Cyber Security Professor out at a college in Phily, so his work was ‘top secret.’ He was more interested in telling me about his wife and how wonderful she was. I’m glad he’s happy.
Eventually the captain came up to see if I was OK before putting me on a daggy airplane wheelchair and wheeled me up to first class for about an hour to land. Why didn’t I do this earlier in the flight? The boys loved having their fifteen minutes of luxury, before we were trolleyed off into an ambulance to be checked over, properly this time!
I went to the local hospital and had my blood checked, blood pressure, reflexes, most things that Marty did, and would have been impressed if he was standing along side me. My blood pressure was dangerously low, but all my vital signs were well – checked for anaemia and diabetes. My fainting was attributed to lack of sleep, dehydration and my dangerously low blood pressure. Three hours later, I was given the all clear to fly onto my next port, even though I still felt light headed and uneasy about continuing my travels.
With this current trip, I have been lucky to have had six hours sleep in the past 72 hours. I tried to sleep, but kept getting interrupted and my workload was overwhelming (hence the lack of blogs over the past few days), but I am here now ready to fall asleep at any minute, but worried if I go to bed too early, I might wake up too early in Pacific time. Usually I can sleep on a plane, but this time with a screaming kid in the foreground and me conscious about what happened last time, sleep just didn’t happen.
Luckily this time, I can’t blame my kids, it’s all self-inflicted and will be better after tonight… good night!