So, I almost died.
Okay, I’m exaggerating. I had a near-death experience.
I had a really bad rash.
Wait. Hear me out.
I have really sensitive skin. I’m allergic to adhesive, so I can’t even wear band-aids or anything. One time in junior high, my cat scratched me pretty bad on my forearm. I had to wrap it up with gauze and tape, and everyone at school thought I had tried to slit my wrists. I thought it made me seem pretty bad ass, so I never really denied the rumor.
So – I know a good rash when I see one.
This was a good one. And by “good one” I mean OMG MY SKIN WAS LITERALLY BUBBLING. It started on my left arm, around my elbow, and went all the way up my arm. It was red and bumpy and itchy and giving off heat! I can handle a rash pretty well, but this one was so bad, I had to go see a doctor. Especially because I had no idea where it had come from, which meant in my mind – I could have been dying.
Off to the walk-in clinic I went. The nurse took one look at my rash and said:
Woah?! WTF DOES THAT MEAN? Woah as in…woah, I’ve never seen anything like that and I think you’re going to explode? Or woah as in…woah, that’s no problem, you’ll be fine.
BECAUSE I DON’T THINK THE SECOND ONE MAKES SENSE.
So I was pretty freaked out. They should teach nurses to never, ever say stuff like “woah.” To make things worse, the doctor comes into the room, takes one look at my rash and says: “I just need to go grab a textbook.”
Yep. A fucking textbook!
He comes back with a textbook the size of four encyclopedias called: “Skin Diseases.” At this point I’m convinced that I’m dying and I start frantically writing down what kind of food I want served and what music I want played at my funeral in my Blackberry.
He compares a few pictures to my actual rash (couldn’t I have done this myself over the Internet?) and determines that I have “contact allergy dermatitis” or something. He asks me if I’ve done anything out of the ordinary lately, or used any new products, etc. He goes on to read a list of things that can commonly cause a reaction like this: “…lotions, certain fabrics, nickel, sunscreen…”
Suddenly a vivid memory of applying sunscreen to my left arm the weekend before while I was reading out on the deck came rushing back to me. I know what you’re thinking and no, I don’t only apply sunscreen to my left arm. I put it all over both arms and my chest. But he assured me it was normal to only react in one area. Well….as “normal” as having an allergic reaction to sunscreen (that you’ve used before, mind you) can be.
Anyways – lesson learned. Fuck sunscreen. I almost died.