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Entering the house of sickness

Thursday, February 21, 2013

*Just a warning, in here I mention blood so if you're ultra squeamish about that, sit this one out!

**The title of this blog is a play on the literal translation of 'aku masuk rumah sakit' or 'I enter the house of sickness' which is how to say 'I went to the hospital' in Indonesian

The other week, I spent about four days in the hospital. It was my first ever extended stay in a hospital (I've only ever been in the ER, and even then only for a few hours) and it was actually fairly pleasant. Aside from the part where I was sick. Lemme explain...

I started feeling sick when we came home at around 9 PM from our two-day AFS orientation in Bandung. At first it was just sort of uncomfortable and 'I-don't-like-this-feeling'-y but then it turned into a burning fever along with other crazy symptoms which left me curled up in bed, super weak, delirious, and really glad when my host mama decided to take me to the hospital after she got home from work the next day.

At the hospital I was hooked up to an IV which delivered the nutrients (sodium, chlorine, and something else) my silly body refused to hold on to. I got admitted to a room, which was reeeeaaaallly nice. Sadly I didn't get a picture to show you guys. I had it all to myself, there was even a cable TV and a bed for guests. That there was another bed makes sense here: in Indonesia there's no such thing as visiting hours in a hospital, meaning family members and friends can, and do maintain a constant vigil. 

The first night I slept in the hospital was kind of a haze because I was still crazy feverish... at some point my IV thing came out of my hand and blood/fluid leaked out onto my pillow, and that's the last thing I can remember from that night. After that, whatever they gave me worked and I woke up feeling much better, but I still had to spend the next two full days in the hospital until all my symptoms went away. 

Me, feat. IV

Mostly while I was staying there I hung out with people, watched TV (in English, for the first time in MONTHS! With commercials and everything!), and played on my laptop. Members of AFS Surabaya, family, and various friends were there to keep me company pretty much the entire time I was admitted, and I'm crazy grateful for them. I know it must have been boring, as hospitals don't exactly offer much in the way of fun and excitement.

I also kept getting checked up on by nurses, and occasionally they would mercilessly inject syringes full of strange clear fluids into my IV until my hand swelled up. I was honestly very well taken care of in the hospital, getting probably the same quality care that I would've in America, or perhaps even better. I've been pretty impressed by the medical system in Indonesia so far, though thank God I've only had to experience it first-hand only one time.

The final diagnosis turned out to be dengue fever. Or, my doctor said something along the lines of "we think you might have had dengue fever and that's why we need to keep you here for an extra day so your blood can go back to normal..." 

But seeing as it's the only one offered, I'm accepting that diagnosis. But fear not, gentle readers, my actual sickness only lasted like two days and I survived half of it alone, which I guess proves that it'll take more than a mosquito-born jungle illness to do me in. 

1 comment

  1. Glad you got all better! It's been great reading about your exploits and adventures in Indonesia! By the by, slap David Dennis for me for not posting often enough to his blog. He'll understand.



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I'm Sara, the freckled bule, one out of eight of the coolest people in the world. I spent a year in Indonesia as a KL/YES Abroad student but now I live in Boise, Idaho. Welcome to my bloggity blog.


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