Dr. M
Thursday August 21st 2008, 11:50 pm
Filed under: Friends,Knit,Life

Ostrich Plumes pattern in gray laceweight(Edited Friday to add this picture of an Ostrich Plumes shawl I did in gray laceweight a year or two after theirs.  It too will fit through a wedding ring, hence the name.)

Today I got to see a doctor I seldom see and told him that there were only two people mentioned in my book whom I hadn’t given a copy to yet.  And that I needed to fix that.  I hadn’t referred to him and his wife by name in there, I said; last page, second paragraph.  I was a brand new laceknitter way back when and I’d made them a wedding ring shawl on size 3 needles in white laceweight Ostrich Plumes.

Dr. M was the ENT who, eighteen years ago when my lupus was diagnosed, finally put together what had eluded everybody else for all those years: that my progressive hearing loss was due to an allergy to aspirin.  I’d apparently triggered it with an overdose when I’d climbed into the medicine cabinet as a toddler and had eaten not quite enough baby aspirins to have to get my stomach pumped.  It was a new bottle and Mom counted pills and fed me baking soda instead on doctor’s orders to neutralize the acid.

With the lupus, I had a new diagnosis and meds to have to take, but I went completely deaf on the prescription-strength Aleve.  I have to tell you–you can close your eyes and try to see what it’s like to be blind, but you cannot close your ears.  It was like nothing I could have expected: when someone talked to me, I felt waves of pain in my ears.  But no sound.  Nada.  Except for the roaring white noise in my ears that didn’t respond to anything but itself.

Apparently Aleve (called Naprosyn then) was different enough from aspirin that I lucked out, but whatever, my hearing came back to what it had been when the dose wore off, and under Dr. M’s directions, I never took NSAIDs again.

And what he told me meant my kids wouldn’t go deaf in their teens too.  And they did not.

And what he told me meant I didn’t have to go any more deaf.  And I did not.

The man was right.

There is more to the story, related to when my Crohn’s was diagnosed ten years later, but this will do for here.  Suffice it to say, I owed him, bigtime; that wedding ring shawl felt absolutely imperative to do.  And it became one of those projects that I will forever rejoice that I knitted it: both for my own sake, and for the great joy of their reaction to it.

I signed and gave him a book today. And he signed my copy for me.

12 Comments so far
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Mmm, yes, aspirin is considered “ototoxic”, meaning it can destroy hearing. Whenever I typed a new drug list for mother, her ENT had instructed her to put on the comment NO ASPIRIN, OTOTOXIC. (She had Raynaud’s syndrome.)

Glad this doctor was sent to you in a timely fashion!

Comment by Barbara-Kay 08.22.08 @ 3:12 am

Thank goodness the deafness was reversible 🙂 All of us have done silly stuff like that as toddlers (I drank a bunch of Amoxicillin good thing I’m not allergic to Penicillin)

Comment by Danielle from SW MO 08.22.08 @ 6:24 am

Full-circle. Ties in with the pattern for their gift too… imagine…

Comment by Channon 08.22.08 @ 7:00 am

The good doctors make SUCH a difference.
And your blog is so beautiful.
And so is your knitting.

Comment by laurie 08.22.08 @ 7:59 am

Glad that you recovered some of your hearing and even gladder that you don’t have to worry about your children going deaf.

It’s wonderful that you have your shawl story subject sign your copy of your book.

Comment by wunx~ 08.22.08 @ 1:14 pm

You know how lucky you are that you know the cause of your hearing loss and that it won’t get worse and that you’re kids won’t/didn’t get it.

Hugs Darling. As always your work is beautiful.

Comment by Tiny Tyrant 08.22.08 @ 5:01 pm

What a wonderful story, and what a perfect way to celebrate such an important relationship! And what a relief it must’ve been to know that you wouldn’t have to worry about your kids having this same problem…

Comment by Jocelyn 08.22.08 @ 5:18 pm

What a wonderful man, and a wonderful doctor. How great that he was in your life and that you are able to tell him what he meant to you and your family.

Comment by Laura in Alameda, CA 08.22.08 @ 9:32 pm

Wow, for the story & the shawl.
Okay, now I’m going to have to give Goodman a heads-up on those aspirins he takes everyday.
His hearing already stinks…who knew?

Comment by Toni Smoky-Mountains 08.23.08 @ 6:58 am

Wow!! Never a dull moment around here.
I am so glad your hearing came back enough for the hearing aids to work…and that your kids are OK…no aspirin for them, either, I’m guessing.

And what a neat concept to have the people who are in your book sign your copy!!

Comment by karin 08.23.08 @ 7:31 am

Toni: do his ears ring when he takes it? That’s a warning sign. For most people, it stops when they stop. All the NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatories) are related to each other, so switching to one of the others wouldn’t make it any safer, I’m afraid.

My kids seem okay on NSAIDs.

Comment by AlisonH 08.23.08 @ 9:57 am

That is a wonderful doctor. I love it that he signed your coopy.

Comment by Sonya 08.26.08 @ 1:14 pm

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