Today, I’m going to take everyone back in a time capsule or a time travelling machine to when I was about twenty-three.
Ah, good times, right? Well, we shall see. I’ll let you decide.
As you know, when I was younger in my twenties, I worked in nightclubs in Melbourne. Until recently, I thought I’d worked in clubs for a whole ten years, but when I did some ‘hard maths’ I realized it was only five years.
My club ‘work’ (it’s still the right team if my output of hours and efforts did not equal my income) was several day’s a week and as many night’s as 2-5 nights a week. Despite my best efforts, at one point I found myself without a roof over my head. I had been living with my older sister and when we finished the lease on a house, she found a place quickly and moved out and then I struggled.
Apparently, it’s really hard to imagine when I said ‘I don’t drink, so won’t becoming home drunk and vomiting’ and don’t lay around all day is not much of a sales pitch when promoting one’s self as a prospective housemate to strangers.
Having a good club network of friends, I managed to find a space on someone’s lounge floor for a small amount of money so I wasn’t out on the street.
These kids were younger than me and the meals I cooked and shared were the only meals I saw concocted from their kitchen. Needless to say, I maintained my day/night sleep deprived routine.
After a month or all of my house-hunting efforts and my day/night work routine, the kids I stayed with asked me to go stay elsewhere, as the landlord (one of the girl’s father) didn’t want me there.
On the Tuesday, my day routine of distributing night club passes, took me to Chapel Street South Yarra and Greville Street Prahan. I dropped into visit my sister, who worked in that area. She gave me a very hard time, that I hadn’t found anywhere to live.
I then ran into my cousin with her shopping bags of groceries. I was so happy to see a friendly face. I asked her to go get a coffee with me, as my sister had so upset me. When I saw her friendly face, I burst in to tears. When she went to put her groceries in the car and come back to me, the weirdest thing happened.
I got a splitting migraine and plus I peed my pants. What? I know!
Briefly, visited the café to use the toilet, then my cousin gave me a lift back to where I was staying. I made it inside feeling very seedy. I hadn’t eaten all day, other than my spirulina (for breakfast). The toilet was occupied, so I threw up on the carpet. What? Are you not meant to do it there?
Have you ever had a headache so bad you couldn’t make a simple decision not to throw up green spirulina on cream carpet? Yeah! It was that bad.
I made it into the toilet only to collapse on the floor, one of my temporary house-mates actually had to come into the small toilet to lift me and get me out, because I just couldn’t move.
Thankfully, they put me to bed, closed the blinds and turned off the light and with a little instruction from me they rang my mum.
To this day, when the shit hits the fan, I call my mum. Have I mentioned, I love my mum?
Mum was on the road within an hour to come get me. Back then, mum still living in my home town in the North East of Victoria. So it took her three hours to get to me and once I was bundled in the front seat with a bucket (that I don’t remember using) we headed back home for another three hours. I don’t recall having much to say all the way home.
Now, to be clear, at the time we put my migraine down to MSG food poisoning as it was and still to this day, THE WORST MIGRAINE I’VE EVER HAD.
I was bedridden for a week and I didn’t eat. I remember visits to a chiropractor most days and on one visit being muscle tested to work out what I could eat. One morning mum insisted I eat and she bought in some green grapes. Good, right?
Mmmmm, we arrived at the chiropractor’s office, not far from mum’s in time for me to fling open the car door and deliver those grapes onto his driveway. A woman was doing her gardening and commented I really needed to see the chiropractor.
One morning mum insisted I get in the shower, I remember getting into the small shower and just standing there unable to move. Eventually, mum came to help me. Did I mention I love my mum?
During that week, you might wonder whey my mum didn’t take me to a doctor or emergency room? Yu know, those moments when you realise a ‘higher power’ (I refer to it as The Universe looking after me. I have few Catholic types who follow my blog) they will think it was odd but anyway. Every time my mum went to call the hospital or the doctor, they were engaged, so we got the message not to go.
I did notice my head hurt less when I rested it on one side less than the other. Weird right? After a week, I all of a sudden felt a little better, at least good enough to eat something. What did I eat first? I’m such a wog, Salami, then Cabana, OMG I think mum thought I’d be sick, since I’d not eaten for a week.
I remember being very slow to get my energy back, all in all I stayed with mum and my younger sister a whole month. My older sister visited once, insisting I was being lazy and to get my arse back to Melbourne to get a job, so I could find a place to live.
While at home, you might wonder if I heard from any of my club friends, since I would normally be there from opening (10pm) until the end (5am), I was usually out in those days from anything from 2-5 nights a week. One night, I started to my ‘good-byes’ to friends far earlier than normal and one guy asked me if I was dying. I’d had a cold, Ok. Can’t a girl go home early once in a while?
Correct! No one called me while I was sick to ask how I was. Admittedly, it was before the era of everyone having a mobile phone.
Interestingly, the Universe really was looking after me while at the time we thought it was MSG food poisoning, after my diagnosis, when I was thirty-four, one of the specialists I went to, was in Sydney and the young lady (who actually hailed from Melbourne) suggested back when I was twenty-three, I likely had a bleed or a leak from my AVM.
My mother and I agree if I’d been diagnosed back when I was twenty-three, the hospital I was born at in the country, would have had the attitude of ‘No Worries, we can fix that’ and it would have been the worst experience of a guinea pig ever.
Ironically, when I collapsed that day back in Prahan when I was twenty-three, I wasn’t very far from ‘The Alfred Hospital’ which is eventually where I had my radiation treatment. Mum and I both agree that I was diagnosed at the right time, because the early treatment options that were available to me came to the Alfred and was covered by Medicare.
So, all in all, I think I was really lucky and my sister, to this day has no idea how serious it was.