murder by death

What do all of these things have in common?

They all tried to KILL ME DEAD in London.

I’ve never had any problems with breathing or using my lungs – they’ve always been top notch. Air goes in, air goes out. I have a system, and it’s never failed me before.

At night, while trying to sleep, I noticed my chest rattling a little like it does at the tail end of a cold. I didn’t have a cold or cough, so I thought maybe it was the pollution in the air and tried to ignore it. After all, everything was fine! Nothing to worry about!

.. except for that Thursday night I COULDN’T BREATHE. I couldn’t take a full breath, and when I lay down on the bed, my chest would rattle like a car 20 years past the replacement date. I wasn’t getting enough air, the sound coming from my air hole was terrifying, and my lungs were full of fluid. I tried multiple times to relax and ignore it, but the instant I was horizontal, the game began again: no breathing. Bad noises. Fluid. Panic.

After an hour of this, I woke Ed up. I was in full blown freak out, and couldn’t calm down (which didn’t help the breathing thing). I didn’t necessarily think that Ed was going to be able to dry up all the extra fluid in my lungs, but it helped to have someone else awake and making sure I was still alive. He could hear my chest rattle from across the room, and we tried a number of different things to ease the pressure on my chest .. no go. Eventually, we drugged me up with Benedryl, which eased the symptoms somewhat and I passed out. I managed to sleep until morning, but the same can’t be said for Ed who stayed up all night to make sure I didn’t stop breathing. Aww!

The following day, everything seemed fine. I knew something was going on though, and Heather and Renee forced me to track down a doctor. I’ve never had to look for a doctor overseas, and was pretty resistant to the idea – the only way they could get me to go was to promise I could visit the Greenwich Market after my lungs were looked at. We walked all over Greenwich trying to find a pharmacist (who couldn’t help me because I’ve never had an inhaler or any kind of breathing issues before) and eventually a clinic of sorts – a Polish medical office that was the most Polish thing ever. The doctor I saw had to ask me to repeat my air saga multiple times, because I talked too fast and had a weird accent. She listened to me breathe for a long time, but couldn’t hear anything because my lungs are fucking jerks – but I was obviously in distress, so she wrote me a prescription for an inhaler and sent me to the pharmacy. Success! The visit cost me £70, which wasn’t nearly as bad as I had feared (plus we have insurance so I’ll get reimbursed eventually), and the inhaler was £8. I would pay that much to be able to breathe.

Things never got nearly as bad as that night I had to wake Ed up, but I still needed to use the inhaler a bunch of times throughout the trip. This was my first trip to London in the summer, and all those wildflower gardens I love so much generate an IMPERIAL SHIT TONNE of pollen. Throw in the increased air pollution, and .. Kimli can’t breathe. Hooray! I got asthma for my birthday! Second worst present ever.

I was hoping that once I got home to Vancouver I’d be free from breathing problems, but yesterday I had to use the inhaler: I couldn’t breathe. And umm I coughed up pink stuff in the shower. I should *probably* go to the doctor to find out what the fuck .. but I survived London trying to kill me, just as Ed survived a death attempt by the Eiffel Tower (heatstroke is a biiiiiiiitch).

I’m still going back to London, though. Pollen will not stop me from moving there.

Oh, and the Mona Lisa tried to kill me with crowds of idiots taking selfies – I was getting crushed and panicky, and had to be rescued by museum staff. And in the Tate, an old lady tried to glare me to death when she thought I was trying to take a free seat at the counter. I wasn’t – I just wanted to take a picture of the epic view. I’m a survivor!

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