Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Smell of Pain

So when I was little, I think 4 yeas old, I was running down a ramp in Louisville's Belvedere.  I was with my parents, but I broke away to run downhill.  Being little, I fell and face-planted before the term was in wide use.  I hit my upper lip hard enough that it split open.  Other than the pain, I don't remember much about what followed.

I'm sure my parents applied tissues or something to staunch the bleeding, but it was found that the bleeding wouldn't stop.  So off to a hospital I went.  I ended up getting three stitches in my lip and was limited to foods I could take through a straw (Kool-Aid, Campbell's Soup, etc.).

I would swear that I was screaming through most of the suturing, but Mom denies that.  But since that day, one of the things I would remember upon waking from nightmares was this chocking chemical smell.  It was a sensation that would linger for minutes after I woke up.

When I started working in environmental, I started wearing nitrile (non-latex) gloves to prevent contaminating myself with chemicals of concern.  The first time I opened a box and the smell hit me, I finally knew where the nightmare smell had come from.  The doctor(s) that worked on my lip must have worn nitrile gloves (or something similar) and that smell stayed with me.

I kind of let the connection fade over time, but today I opened a new box and the smell hit me taking me right back.

1 comment:

Janet A said...

The best part of this story is you had on a white suit and I had on a white dress. Neither of us had a drop of blood on our clothes. You were a trooper and only cried when they worked on your mouth in the ER.

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