Also: I need some advice. The following story is kind of intense and although I eventually told my mom what happened when she pressed me about my cough, I left out major details. When my dad called earlier that evening because I hadn't responded to his messages, I told him that I was totally fine and didn't mention that I had to use my rescue inhaler an hour before. I'm struggling with how much I should tell my parents about this. I feel so guilty that I've put them through so much medically, and I feel like they deserve a break from my medical burdens. I know that if I told them the whole story, they would jump in the car and come get me, and it would consume all of their thoughts. I think it will get better on its own so I'm thinking I'd like to keep this to myself to spare them the worry. I hate being the one that everyone worries about all the time. Hate it. On the other hand, it's kind of unsettling to be keeping things from my parents; I didn't lie to them about what happened, but I omitted the scarier details, so although my parents know everything about what happened two weeks ago, they only know the bare minimum about the other day; my mom just thinks that I have a mild cough now. Anyone have some advice here? Should I tell them everything, or is it okay to sugarcoat the situation a little for the sake of their feelings and sanity?
Anyway, here's what happened. I'd really appreciate if you'd leave a comment with some advice if you have some. :) (Whether you're a parent or not! I'm just trying to put myself in my parents' shoes and decide what would be best for them...)
My cough was getting better since my trip to the ER two weeks ago, but then on Tuesday I accidentally inhaled some smoke because a group of people were smoking while I was on my way to class, and everything got worse again.
Thursday evening during dinner, I was coughing so hard that I lost feeling in my hands and my face. My inhaler got my breathing under control and I was completely fine for a few hours.
And then at 11:00, someone decided to throw a party. In the hallway.
That's when I started having trouble breathing again. I opened the door a crack and realized that they had sprayed perfume EVERYWHERE, and that some of it had made its way into my room and was exacerbating my breathing problems.
I shut the door immediately and sent a panicked text message to one of my friends.
"What do I do?!"
Leaving would require me to walk through the hallway full of perfume...but even with my inhaler and a window open, the perfume was making its way into my room.
My cough kept getting worse, so we decided that the best option would be for me to hold my breath and try to leave.
My friend arrived at my door and together we made our way through the hallway, but about halfway through I couldn't hold my breath anymore. Immediately after I inhaled, my cough got worse, and I couldn't get a good breath.
It seemed like we were in that hallway foreverrr, but finally we made it to a spot outside my dorm with clean air. By that point, I had lost all feeling in my hands, and I couldn't breathe out enough to effectively use my inhaler.
My friend called campus safety for help, and as we were waiting for them to arrive, I began to lose my hearing and my vision, I could no longer feel my legs and feet, and my hands clenched and completely stopped working; no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get them to move.
I was so scared...shaking, gasping for breath, barely able to see or hear and unable to use my hands. I felt completely and utterly powerless.
According to my friend, some of the people from the party saw me struggling to breathe and they laughed. They laughed, and amidst their laughter they asked if I was having a panic attack and then left.
I don't understand what kind of person laughs when someone is having trouble breathing.
"It took every ounce of my self-control to restrain myself from decking them in the face," my friend said later.
Vaguely I heard a voice next to me, someone I recognized, telling me that it was going to be okay...Then the campus safety officers arrived along with an EMT, and I think they were asking me questions but I couldn't make out the words. I remember insisting that I didn't want to go to the hospital, didn't want to go through that again. The whole world seemed still at this point...I think the whole situation only lasted maybe twenty minutes to a half hour, but it felt like days...
And then my breathing began to come more easily again...with deep, shuddering breaths, my vision began to focus again and my hearing was coming back. It took a while before I could move my hands again and about a half hour before I regained full feeling in my arms and legs, but in the meantime, the oxygen felt amazing as it filled my lungs with each grateful breath.
The room spun for a while, and I felt as though the bench I was sitting on was moving...apparently this was a side-effect of the oxygen deprivation, as was my pounding headache.
By the time I got back to my room, it was 1am, and I was shaky and wide awake because of the medicine from my inhaler. When I finally fell asleep at 2:30am, I closed my eyes and took a moment to be thankful: thankful that I could breathe again, thankful that this nightmare was over.
Since then, I've still been having some trouble, but it hasn't been nearly as bad as Thursday night.
Again, if anyone has any advice, I'd really appreciate it if you'd comment! I feel really bad that I've put my parents through so much already in life...but is it irresponsible of me not to tell them the full story?