So when I woke up on Monday (yesterday) , I made coffee and allowed various concerns and projects to slowly sharpen into focus in my mind. There was the note my 16 year old son had left late the night before to wake him up as he had grown increasingly concerned about these strange white blisters on his throat, there were dental visits for myself and the same son scheduled for later that day, there was my oldest son in Florida in Hurricane Issac’s path, there was the decision about wether to allow my two teen sons to play soccer in the homeschool league which entails a heroic amount of driving for the parent (me), there were the two drawings that need to be completed by Thursday at the latest, and there were the class descriptions due at the college I teach at as classes start next Tuesday. There were some other concerns sort of out of focus in the back of my mind, but I’d say these were the primary ones that I felt I needed to address that particular day.
So I sat down at the computer and checked the path of the hurricane. It seemed to be missing the Sarasota area, though each “weather map” illustration pictured it differently. I quickly checked and found no headlines about Sarasota under water or art students found floating. I then googled the white ulcers on my other son’s throat and found alarming warnings to see a doctor immediately as the throat could close up and breathing could cease, and on the other hand, home remedies such as gargling with salt water. Feeling no further ahead, I decided I better at least make sure he was still breathing so I went upstairs and looked in on him. It reminded me of when the kids were infants and I would check that they were still breathing. He was; only he was a lot bigger than an infant. Next, I went back downstairs and pretty efficiently typed up the syllabii for the classes I was teaching.
By noon, my world had been rocked by the the dentist telling me I needed a root canal and there was an appt available tomorrow. I felt obligated to take it as future Tuesdays would require me to be teaching. Simultaneously, the 16 year old was now very worried about the mysterious ulcers. I had a look at them. We phoned an alternative health friend who suggested that it could be yeast. We phoned the doctor and made an appt to come in that day once we had phoned the dentist and cancelled the dental appt.
We spent a long time first waiting in the little examination room for the student doctor. He asked lots of questions. He was supposed to guess what it was and then the doctor would confirm or contradict his guess. He left the room without enlightening us. When the doctor finally came in, he was as friendly as ever. He has a merry face. He looked over the notes, examined my son’s throat, asked a couple more questions and then calmly explained that the little white things were mucous off of the tonsils. Not everyone manifests them as sticky globs that bother them, but everyone has it! I asked the student doctor if he had guessed correctly, and he smiled and said that basically he had, but that he didn’t know the name of it. My son had been complaining about stuff in his throat for 2 weeks or so. (We rarely rush to the doctor) The doctor explained that it was not live flesh and he tried to scrape one of them off to show us, but my son’s gag reflex was not having it. He recommended salt and water gargling, and that if we were really bothered we could go to an ear, eye, nose, and throat specialist. I reminded him that we had no health insurance and I stated that Iw as pretty sure we would be able to deal with it just fine, now that we knew what it was.
We went home, relieved. I felt a little foolish for going to the doctor, but at the same time, the peace of mind was wonderful. later that night, my son came triumphantly down the stairs bearing the three nodules pictured above. He had pried one out, and coughed out the others.
The root canal did not hurt at all, but the novacaine has not worn off yet.