I’ve heard that phrase aimed at me once or twice.
Which brings me to the reason for this post. So many people have asked me over the years, “why are you sick so much?” At my most impatient moments, I give them a terse response like, “my parents dropped me.” If I’m in a disclosing mood, I give them the real full story. The latter will be contained within this post.
Currently, I have a lung infection. Most people seem to react strongly to hearing that. Well, I’ve had hundreds of lung infections. Truth is, I always have some kind of infection. When the infections get bad, I have to take IV antibiotics like I’m taking now. Oral antibiotics don’t work very well on me, partially because of bacterial resistance, partially because of my malabsorption. (more about that later).
IV antibiotics are strong. If injected into a small vein, they will literally eat away the vein until it ceases to exist. To remedy this, they invented a PICC line. It’s basically a long catheter that travels all the way from your upper arm down into the Vena Cava a couple inches from your heart. I had one installed this week. For those of you that wonder what it looks like, i’ve included a picture.
(The best part isn’t even shown in that image: the red and blue ports that look like RCA jacks. you know how long i’ve waited to have audio jacks coming out of my flesh?)
Before I was conceived, somewhere along the process of meiosis a genetic mutation occurred. The result? Hypogammaglobulinemia, otherwise known IGG deficiency. I have it. My body does not create IGG, which are antibodies used by white blood cells to fight infection. Without treatment, I would likely die of complications from infections or sepsis. Every three weeks, I get an IGG transfusion that brings my blood gammaglobulin up to a normal level. This is why I am such a fan of medical technology. If I had been born 25 years earlier… well. What current medical technology cannot address is the lack of IGG in my mucus membranes. As a result, I constantly have low-grade infections in my sinuses, my lungs, and my intestines. The latter leads to some form of malabsorption.
Yes, I take my vitamins, and no, your herbal tea isn’t going to make me better. If you can figure out how to magically infuse my mucus tissues with IGG, I’m all ears. Until then, I’m waiting for the next breakthrough in genetic therapy.
I think that pretty much says it. If you have any comments, i’m down to respond. Oh, and please don’t feel sorry for me – I love my life, and everything that goes along with it. Life is wonderful – do not take one single moment for granted.