Reub's journey

30 September 2012

Stung again

"Pew-firm," the best mispronunciation-of-a-word ever, came from our 4-year-old son B as he wrapped his mouth around the word "perfume" years ago. I didn't wear pew-firm then, and I don't now; I wash with unscented soap, use scentless deodorant,  and there's only fragrance-free laundry detergent on the shelf. This personal preference has made me an unlikely target for insect stings up until recently.

Last Wednesday, exactly 7 weeks-to-the-minute later, it happened again, within centimeters of the first sting's location, except this time on the right hand.

Photo from bugnet.org
The little wasp looked like a Typhiid, usually non-aggressive and considered beneficial. Huh. I must've identified it wrongly? These guys are definitely not my friends.



On Thursday you could still faintly detect two metacarpal "hand bones" but by Friday AM they'd disappeared under angry red skin.
It was somewhat fascinating to watch the reaction over the next 48 hours, the metacarpal bones slowly descending into puffiness one by one, from right to left and down the wrist as well. J recommended an application of comfrey, but there was none to be had.




Last time I used a paste of mint leaves, easily obtained from the over-run garden; it was soothing but left nasty stains when it dribbled onto clothing.



What do left-handed people do when they take pictures? This was so awkward.
After self-medicating with a benadryl-aspirin cocktail, today I'm back to bony hands. I continue to be off pew-firm though, still convinced it's a good strategy.


30 comments:

  1. Oh ouch.. poor you. I hope it eases soon.

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  2. You seem quite allergic and that can get scary-worse if it happens again. Your doctor needs to know this and decide if you need an emergency treatment on hand. I laughed off a hives reaction to antibiotics but my doctor said it can go from hives to not breathing without warning, from one time to the next.

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    1. The 1st time it happened I did go to the doc & she didn't say anything about an epipen. I do still wonder, though, and have an appt scheduled with my regular doctor this week. We'll talk about it.

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  3. Scary!!! I was stung by a rose thorn, and a day later with a swollen arm and achy all over I took myself to the doctor. It turns out that these things can cause quite a panic, and can develop into nasty infections. Who knew!

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    1. An infection overnight from a rose thorn? Ohhh, not good. (When I went to the doc the 1st time this happened I was worried that's what it was. But no. Just a bad reaction b/c I was stung right on a vein.)

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  4. oh, that does not sound like fun.

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    1. No, but it wasn't as bad as 7 weeks ago.

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  5. Yow!! We have wasps and yellow jackets around here and for the most part I just let them be. can't remember if I've been stung out here or not. I don't think so.

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    1. But you do have copperheads in your back yard and that scares me more.

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  6. baby all means, stay off of pew firm.

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    1. Don't worry! Pew firm is not for me!

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  7. Your reaction should be less if you are not allergic. YOu should have a histamine to the proteins. If your reaction was worse, that may be an allergy. Well, these guys are going to go as the season wanes.

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    1. Thank you Tabor, these are the re-assuring thoughts I've been telling myself. After this 2nd sting, I came home & sat in the kitchen, phone in hand, waiting for my throat to swell up or some other terrible reaction, but that didn't happen. Happily.

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  8. Oh dear!

    Well, I wonder what Brother Wasp is trying to tell you. It's like Ellen and her bites and stings to her foot. What could a wasp be telling you? Have you wondered? I like to ask myself, "If life were a dream, what would this symbolize?"

    Because - you know - life IS a dream. Merrily, merrily, merrily.

    Glad you can see your metacarpals again! xx

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    1. I do wonder. When insects and other animals bite or sting, it's usually a warning: "Stay away from this place!!" I generally take this literally, but perhaps there are other kinds of places to be warned about. What are they though?

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  9. This wasp seems to have your number for some odd reason! Hope your hand is back to normal soon so you can click away! So sorry!

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    1. My hand is close to normal now. No worries!

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  10. I am unscented everything too but not because of bees...because it gives me migraine headaches! ugh!!

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    1. Scented things make me sick, although not with migraines. That would be awful.

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  11. if there is a biting insect in the vicinity i will be the one who gets bitten ... pew-firms make me sneeze ... so i don't do scented anything either ... had no idea it was why those buggers like me .. and i am a lefty .. but i was taught to do everything right handed ... since the world is designed for right handed people i bet a lot of lefties shoot righty

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    1. Daryl, that makes sense. It was super awkward trying to hold the camera and shoot with my left hand when the shutter release was on the right. If you're right-handed you can do this much easier, and I only just realized it.

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  12. Oops. There it goes again ! Another painful stinging experience. Look at the brighter side of things: Wasps find you attractive and are drawn to you like magnets:)

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  13. Ha! That's also the reason weird people sit next to me on the bus!

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  14. Gads. I got stung on each ankle once by something peevish that a dog dislodged for me, and developed cankles on the spot. I looked like Hillary Clinton from the knees down, which is the way I least wanted to resemble Hillary Clinton. Actually could not walk for days. What I learned is to not go huckleberrying with a dog.

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    1. Matching ankle cankles! Makes my day to be able to write those 3 words.

      My second sting was also a case of a canine unhelpfulness. Why didn't the dog get stung? Not fair.

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  15. Make a paste of mud (spit and dirt will do if you're away from a water source). It will ease the pain and reduce the swelling a bit. If you're near home, make a paste of baking soda and water. It's a good idea to be checked by the Dr. just in case you're developing an allergy. Breathing is good - you don't want to stop ;)

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