What started as an awareness raising and ethnographic styled walk through Sierra Leone, this site now details the encounters of a not so academic academic who spends more time occupying Wall Street and squats than a university...

Monday, December 6, 2010


So obviously its been a long time since my last post.  I stepped off the plane and pretty much disappeared it would seem.  I wish I was just catching my breath.  I unfortunately got sick that night that I came home, and though it leveled off a bit over the few days that followed, by Friday I was in the hospital and in a pretty solid amount of pain.  I was incredibly dehydrated after vomiting and diarrhea that covered several days.  A couple IV bags of fluid though and they sent me home.  I felt horrible, but malaria had come back negative.  So with just 'flu-like' symptoms, no big deal right?  Well by Sunday morning I was in an ambulance, and by Sunday night I was in the Critical Care Unit at the hospital.  Honestly, I don't really remember much of Sunday.  It's all pretty hazy.  They started me on antibiotics for a possible intestinal infection and then a late malaria test by the special blood doctor came back positive.  Of course I'm allergic to most chemicals, antibiotics, and medicines.  Bottom line is that the next couple days were horrible.  Lots of pain, high fevers, delirium, hallucinations, I even heard a frog that no one else seemed to hear!!  Anyway, we talked them into cutting off some of the antibiotics and other craziness they were pouring into me and things started to clear up.

There were some other serious issues though.  I was dangerously close to needing a blood transfusion as my blood platelet count was extremely low.  But started to be able to keep food down and the blood count started to come up.  The malaria medicine - despite the violent reactions I had to them - was working, the parasites in my blood cleared out.  The hospital kept me going, kept me alive really.

So home I came.  I've been here for a couple days now.  I couldn't really walk or stand up for a few days there.  Very dizzy and week, but I'm fnctional now.  All told, I lost 15 pounds and a lot of strength.  It's going to be a long road back.  Amazing that in two weeks you can lose so much.  My body seems to have been cut in half.  Incredible.  But the most important thing to take from it all came in a frank conversation with the infectious disease doctor.  Basically, giving my sensitivities/allergies and general health concerns, with the issues I had, the probable intestinal infection and malaria, if I had not gotten out of Sierra Leone when I did I probably would not have survived this.  Pretty powerful thing to hear.  I was incredibly close to needing blood, and with all the other fluids and medicine I needed and was given, I would not have been able to get it in Sierra Leone.  Tough to swallow.  Guess I'm not Superman...  :-/           

1 comment:

  1. Praying for a full recovery Tim! YOu may not be superman but you'll surely bounce back!