The gum is not yet ready for consumption.

Check out the progress I’ve made on my tub of blueberries:

It’s underwhelming, I know. Two reasons I still have this many blueberries:

  1. The second vaccination did not make me ill.
  2. I haven’t smoked cannabis in almost two weeks.

On Saturday–the day of my shot–a colleague asked me how I was doing. I told her I was booked for my second dose in the afternoon and that I was worried that I’d be among those who get super sick since my first shot didn’t go so well.

Her: “I don’t mean to scare you, but I spent three days vomiting after getting my second shot.”

Well… I guess I’ll keep worrying!

The nurse who gave me my second jab was obtuse. I told her I needed her to write to communicate with me. The first thing she asked–in writing–was, “Can you lipread?” I was baffled: she was wearing a mask. Was she either planning on pulling down her mask for me or, did she somehow think it would be a better option after I specified that she make use of her fine penmanship? After shaking my head (at best, I can catch a few words), I noticed her mask moving up and down. She was trying to talk to me… through her mask. If she was trying to speak louder, I wouldn’t know because I’m REALLY FUCKING DEAF.

Two years ago, for the sake of getting official documentation, I visited an audiologist and had earbuds burrowed midway in my ear canals. The audiologist apparently cranked the volume all the way up to 110 decibels. I say apparently because it was the usual dead silence for me. I can’t hear fireworks, gunshots, howler monkeys, or any of the other things Google says are painfully loud.

I may not be able to hear, but I can read. I got the print-out that listed the possible side effects, so instead of writing to me, the nurse held up the sheet and moved her finger down the text, indicating that I could read it on my own time. Of all the listed side effects, I only had a sore arm for one day. Of all the unlisted side effects, I found a faint discoloration around my armpit in the morning. It was gone by noon. By 2pm–24 hours after getting the vaccine–it seemed like I was out of the woods.

I bring you love.


Yes, I was. I wasn’t doomed to a weekend of eating nothing but blueberries and then puking all that up. I tested my stamina by visiting the bouldering gym, not to boulder, but to collect the shoes that I had dropped off for resoling back at the end of May. I paid extra to have them sanitized. They still stink.

This brings me to the doctor’s appointment from two weeks ago. It was a follow-up appointment for my mental health. I apprehensively accepted a prescription for antipsychotic medication. However, around that time, I decided to suspend my evening routine of taking a few puffs of cannabis before retiring to the couch. Cannabis helps me when I’m simmering with rage, and it makes any show funnier. It was apparent, though, that it was making my anxiety worse.

The last time I went this long without smoking was when I was travelling in Patagonia. In 2019! For me, cannabis is habit-forming, but not addictive. I don’t experience any freaky withdrawal effects like I do when I try cutting back on my caffeine consumption.

I think it has helped. I’m not overcome with the fear of dying while trying to fall asleep anymore. So, I haven’t actually tried the prescribed pills yet.

When the doctor, who, by the way, looked like Dr. Mark Greene from ER asked, “Is there anything else I can help you with?”

I considered kicking off my left shoe forcefully, unconcerned about the possibility of it hitting Dr. Mark Greene in the head, and ask, “SO, IS THIS MELANOMA OR WHAT?”

But, I didn’t take that route. Instead, I politely asked if the doctor could take a look at my newly blemished toe. I blamed the stench of my foot on having walked 5km to get to the clinic. I indeed walked that far to get to the clinic, but my freshly sanitized climbing shoes suggest that I have powerful foot funk.

Thus, it’s probably not surprising that the spot under my toenail is likely just some funky fungus. I got a tiny envelope so that my toenail trimmings can visit the lab once I grow out my nails long enough. Thanks, Dr. Mark Greene.

In summary: the status of my toe is unknown; my mental health has improved; and my hearing has not improved.

PS- Who wants to come over for blueberries?

3 thoughts on “The gum is not yet ready for consumption.

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