I should have…

Monday, 3 May 2021

A phrase I repeat many times a day. I caught myself yesterday when I started a sentence with those exact words and decided no more should haves. Shoulda, woulda, coulda, didn’t. I can’t change the past, I can only learn from it and do better going forward.

Until this morning. I should have gotten the shingles vaccine. Period. Full stop.

When I turned 50, I was excited to join the group of 50+. There’s a special menu at select restaurants for 55+; There’s Freedom 55; The Red Hat Society; Fitness groups; Store discounts…so much to look forward to this decade. There’s also menopause and all the fun that goes with it and there’s the shingles vaccine. Shortly after my 50th birthday I received a notice, maybe it was an ad on my phone, I don’t recall the exact details, but it was strongly advising I book an appointment at a local pharmacy for the shingles vaccine. I laughed it off, telling myself shingles is for old people. I’m in the young-older group. A newbie old person. The prime of my mid-life. I’m not going to get shingles. That’s for old people. Not to mention it was a little pricey. I put the notion aside and got on with living.

Two years later and guess what? I have shingles.

That sore back I had two weeks ago, was indeed a sore back. The band of pain and sensitive skin stretching from my spine to my belly button was not part of the sore back. I thought it was related to a pinched nerve. But at the back of my mind I wondered if it could be shingles. Especially when a small rash developed on my back and my side. My chiro said it could be related to my back issue and recommended drops to decrease inflammation and help drain the lymph nodes. The drops were incredible, as were the chiro adjustments, and within two days the pain in my back was gone. But the pain on that band from my spine to my belly button was still there and was getting stronger, the rasher getting bigger.

Last night, the rash kind of exploded, transforming into blisters. There was no doubt in my mind…this was shingles. I called my chiro to see if I should cancel my appointment but she said she could treat me and help with the shingles. She verified it was indeed shingles and included acupuncture with my adjustment. She also recommended taking Lysine.

Looking back over the last two weeks I can see the other symptoms: fever, chills, dizziness, fatigue. I went for a COVID test last week to rule it out – it came back negative – when all along it was shingles.

So, ya, this morning I used the shoulda phrase. I should’ve gotten the shingles vaccine. The disappointing part of all of this is: I had to cancel my COVID vaccine appointment.

I’m off work for the rest of the week. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with myself as lying down and sitting can be challenging (so much for binge watching) and bending over is excruciating on my stomach (so much for gardening).

But, I do believe everything happens for a reason and God is trying to tell me something. I guess I’d best get quiet and listen to what he has to say.

I’m sure it’ll be amazing!

Peaceful moment by the river this morning. ©WQuinn 2021