Sunday, May 09, 2010
Inner Face Punched - or - What Else Would I Write About At 4:52am Besides The Thing That Is Keeping Me Awake Against My Will
Every morning for the past two weeks it is the same. Every morning at 4 am or so, I wake up. I wake up and wonder who has been punching me in the face all night. The bone underneath my left eye is swollen and tender, it aches to the touch and I can feel my heart beating in my bloodshot eye. If feels like my something is building up pressure behind my eye, trying to eject it out of my skull from inside my head. I push on my eye with my palm and it throbs behind my eyelids. My left temple feels like a railroad spike is slowly piercing it; a rusty, oily, dull and crocked railroad spike, being driven in by a ball pin hammer. I can feel my teeth ache all the way through my jaw line and up past my cheekbones. It hurts to open my mouth, it hurts to close it, it hurts to yawn, it hurts to sleep. What kind of inconsiderate asshole has broken into my apartment in the middle of the night and started walloping me in the face? When I blow my nose, streaks of blood are mixed in with the fibrous brown junk that has invaded my sinuses. I am suddenly totally awake, absolutely wide-awake, eyes open, face aching, in complete pain, and miserable. I am sick. I have a nasty sinus infection that isn’t going away. It’s been a few weeks, some days are fine, some are torture. By this point, I know that no one has broken into my apartment and punched me repeatedly about the face, and by this point, I know how to get back to sleep. I grab two towels and stumble towards my shower. I leave the lights off while I crank the hot water knob. It needs to be hot, almost too hot, and I need to stand directly under the showerhead and let it pour over my head, 360˚, like a scorching deluge, blanketing my entire head. I will stand like this, in the dark for about a half an hour. The sludge in my head will start to break up and I’ll drag it out of my face in a fit of snorts and coughs and sounds that I remember hearing my grandfather making from behind the closed bathroom door of my childhood. I remember hating those sounds. As a reward for my efforts, I get mouthfuls of brown and red chunks. I have a face full of gross and it won’t let me get rid of it without it proving that it’s taste, texture, color, and viscosity is gag worthy. I lean my head out the shower and spit mouthful after mouthful of awful into the newly lined trashcan next to the tub, just like I did last night. There is no way that I was going to spit this out into the shower drain and run the risk of this blob refusing to squeeze through the drain holes and just sit by my toes. I’d rather change the garbage bag again tomorrow, er, I mean later today, just like I did yesterday. The pain slowly subsides underneath my blanket of hot water. My temple, my eye socket, my cheekbone, my teeth, they all calm down and I turn off the water. I wrap myself up in my two towels; one around my waist, one over my shoulders. I slowly return to bed, mostly soaking wet. I take a chug off the NyQuil bottle sitting on my desk, next to my alarm clock. I’ve stopped using the measuring cup days ago. “That tastes like sleep,” I murmur to myself as I slid back into bed after tossing my towels onto a large pile of their comrades that has taken over half of my couch. Maybe I’ll go to the doctor tomorrow. Nope, got no insurance, and I’ve dealt with sinus infections just fine in the past. It’ll brake and I’ll be fine. Maybe I’ll just write about it instead.