I woke up still feeling nauseous and shaky, but thankfully I had somehow managed to sleep through the night, and I didn’t feel as bad as the day before. I managed to force down some dry toast, and we took the car to Infusio for the usual 9am start. Unfortunately, by the time we arrived I was feeling horrendous; just as sick as yesterday, and I had a pounding headache which was getting stronger. I spent some time talking to another patient Maayan, who was at the clinic for two weeks doing a round of NAD therapy. She received Stem Cells nine months ago and had seen lots of improvement since then, but was still struggling with fatigue, so she had returned as recommended by Dr Kim. It was so valuable and encouraging to talk to someone who had already been through the treatment process and started her recovery, and she was so kind and patient in answering all my questions about her experience, which I hugely appreciated.
Dr Kim came to check on me, and decided that she wanted me to do more of the same IVs as I was still feeling so sick. I had been so distracted yesterday that I hadn’t paid attention to what was in the IVs, but she explained that they were high dose amino acids combined with some Myers ingredients and then glutathione. I was nervous to start them again as my nausea seemed to get even worse whilst receiving them, but I understood that they were vital to help me detox and stabilise on my lower medication dose. She also wrote a prescription for a muscle relaxant to help with some of the pain, and Alex kindly went off to the pharmacy to get it filled. In the meantime Hollis got ready to start my IVs, but my veins were not looking at all good. I’ve always had difficult veins, but I was also very dehydrated as I had been struggling to even keep water down, so it was not going to be an easy task to find a good one to access. Even with Hollis’ expertise he struggled; we tried three different veins and two of them immediately blew. As my hypersensitivity was still really bad every touch was hurting me far more than usual, so getting stuck multiple times was extremely painful, but eventually we got a successful vein and I was hooked up. I was so relieved and was able to turn my attention to Gena, who had just come out of her surgery. Understandably she was feeling very sore, but in good spirits. I was so proud of her, and after finishing the post-procedure IVs she left to go home and get some good rest.
Once Gena had left, I moved outside to continue my IVs on the terrace. I was starting to feel worse and worse; my nausea and headache was off the charts, and I was so incredibly sore all over my body. The bags took such a long time to get through today, as I was so sensitive; I was hooked up from 10am until 5pm, and honestly for most of that time I just lay on the lounger, hid behind my sunglasses and cried from the sickness and pain. I was glad to at least be outside in the fresh air, although I managed to get pretty sunburned, ending up with a very fetching IV shaped sunburn line! Hollis would come and give me IV Zofran between each bag, and I kept taking the 5HTP as well but nothing was really touching the nausea. In the afternoon Dr Kim came out and did an acupressure treatment on me, and then hooked me up to some kind of electro-magnetic clips which were supposed to help with anxiety. I was the last patient left again, and I was just completely overwhelmed by the kindness of all the staff. Truly, the staff are such a big part of what makes Infusio such a magic and incredibly healing place. Of course Dr Kim and Hollis are both amazing and took such good care of me whilst I was struggling, but the additional staff members are just as caring and offer a level of support that far exceeds their job description. Caryn was continuously bringing me cups of nettle tea and green juice to keep hydrated, and the lovely ladies on the front desk, Wendy and CiCi, were also unbelievably kind and understanding, giving me hugs and telling me that everything was going to be okay. Words cannot express how grateful I was to have their support pushing me through such a tough day. Finally, the only thing left to do was my Thymus injection, which was absolutely agonising because I was so hypersensitive, but I was immensely thankful that today was only one injection and not the thirteen!
Once we arrived back at the hotel we went straight to the rooftop to see Gena and her husband Kenny, and I was relieved to see she was doing okay, although obviously in a lot of pain from the surgery. After such a difficult day for both of us it was really therapeutic to just talk things over, and we still managed to share a laugh. I was going to really miss Gena next week, but I was happy it was almost time for her to go home and see her little boy, whom she was desperately missing. It had been a long day, but when we returned to our room, I discovered that today’s drama was not quiet over yet. It might make me a little strange to admit, but even at twenty-seven years old I am embarrassingly attached to my soft toys, and have a bear and koala which are my absolute prized possessions; I always take them with me when I travel, and they have comforted me through a lot of tough times over the past few years. The bear I was given when I was born, and the koala Alex bought for me on my very first trip to Australia over six years ago, so their sentimental value is huge; to give a little context of how obsessed I am with them, we actually had a marzipan cake topper commissioned of them to have on our wedding cake (I told you it was embarrassing!). So of course I had brought them with me to California, and every day when the cleaners would service our room they would leave them sat on the bed, where we would find them upon our return every evening. However, today when we entered the room, the bear was sat on the bed but the koala was not. I immediately noticed, and we started looking around trying to find him, half-heartedly at first, but my efforts quickly became frantic as I realised he was nowhere to be seen. I phoned down to the concierge to ask them if they knew where he was, but they had no idea what I was talking about, although they told me someone from housekeeping would be sent up to help me search. Alex later admitted to me that he had realised the koala had most likely been picked up when changing the sheets, and he was increasingly getting worried that he may have been shipped off to the industrial dry-cleaners never to be seen again. He told me he had been genuinely concerned how I would cope with this outcome on such an already difficult day, and thought this might have been the last straw to emotionally finish me off! Thankfully, after about fifteen minutes of panic, housekeeping arrived at our door with my koala on a silver platter. He had indeed been through the wash with the sheets, and was sparkly clean and about ten shades lighter; it looked like he had gotten a Beverly Hills facelift!
After all this drama, I was feeling a little better and up to eating something, so we ordered some Thai takeout and I was able to eat some noodles. We then watched a show on Netflix, and after taking a last dose of painkillers for my headache I was able to fall asleep quickly. It had been an extremely difficult couple of days; some of the most unwell I had ever felt, and I was completely exhausted and feeling like my physical and mental strength was seriously waning. I had been recording voice notes each evening to document the treatment I had done that day, and when I listened back to this day’s entry to write this blog post, I had recorded that this had been one of the worst days of my life, and I felt like I was dying. Looking back this might have been a little dramatic, but it reminds me of just how tough the first part of my second week at Infusio was, and how desperate I was to start feeling a little relief and regaining some stability.