Wow it was a long weekend.
Thursday was when I went to the doctor. I took the medication prescribed and went to sleep. My body was exhausted. It is interesting to note the many differences I observed in the medical practices here. The layout and accommodations are much less in Italy than what I was used to. They didn’t even have air conditioning. When they checked my throat, they didn’t do an active throat culture- just a visual examination. Personally I think this is so weird. I miss my doctor at home.
On Friday I started to run a fever and had to get another prescription to take in conjunction with the antibiotic. Still no change in my throat. Looking in my throat my tonsils were incredibly swollen and there was white “insert the grossest thing you can think of” covering them. The pain was incredible. It hurt to swallow anything. I didn’t eat any food because of the pain.
Saturday- still no change. I started to eat raw garlic and honey because I heard that it’s supposed to help your immune system. At this point I was desperate to try anything that might work. My family was so worried about me. The hardest part is that they weren’t there to help take care of me. When my family was in Italy, my sister Jenny went with a surgeon to observe mastectomies. Since my family had met him- they arranged for him to come check on me and look at my throat. I got a house call yall! This doesn’t happen anymore. The doctor told me to keep taking the antibiotics and gave me a throat spray to help with the pain. I was in bed all day.
Sunday- The throat spray didn’t help as much as I had hoped. It was supposed to numb the area so you don’t feel the pain, but unfortunately the swollen part of my tonsils that needed this medicine were covered in the white stuff so it couldn’t actually work. I went to the bathroom to look in my mouth more than I actually went to use it. ha. I just wanted to see improvements! The antibiotics should have kicked in a long time ago.
Monday- Finally the pain and swelling are a little better. Since we are traveling to Florence tomorrow, I decided to go to the doctor anyway. The antibiotics have not done anything. I think the improvements from today are just because my body is naturally fighting the infection. I talked to the nurse at the school and she set up an appointment with a throat specialist nearby. Yes! Finally someone who can tell me what is wrong; and in English! I immediately took a taxi to the hospital. When the doctor saw my throat he said “Wow! Your tonsils are REALLY swollen and you have a lot of ‘stuff’ in your throat” Umm you should have seen it yesterday- today I’m feeling better…. After poking my throat multiple times
making my eyes water with this big metal thing , the doctor told me that I have “strep on my tonsils” and that it is unusual. The antibiotics I had been taking were not the correct thing. Awesome. He prescribed new ones and a cortisone shot to reduce the swelling. The shot definitely kicked in quickly, praise the Lord! I really miss being able to participate with my class in the wine tastings. Fortunately the majority of this occurred on the weekend when we didn’t have class.
The whole weekend I felt absolutely miserable I wasn’t even able to use my laptop. I am so happy to be feeling better. Thank you Lord!
Through this experience I learned many things. The most obvious thing was that I could see how differently the medical structure is set up in another country. I can’t say that I liked it. Having a language barrier is definitely a challenge with consequences that hurt in this situation. I saw how my sweet professor genuinely cared and checked on me multiple times a day. My roommates that became good friends would pick up food for me and constantly asked how they could help. Most importantly, even though my family had just traveled back to the USA, they were figuring out a way to send someone to me. I am so blessed with pure love!