I’m fairly alarmed right now.
In The Year From Hell, I contracted Bell’s Palsy. For those of you unfamiliar with this particular illness, it’s basically paralysis of half the face. In my case, I lost any use of, or sensation in: my left eyelid, my left cheek, my left nostril, the left side of my mouth. I also lost all sense of taste.
Eating/ drinking becomes a challenge when your mouth doesn’t close. Even if you use a straw, you still have to tilt your head to one side and let gravity do the work, or whatever you’re drinking ends up in your lap. I had to wear an eyepatch because I couldn’t blink on the left side. Of course, speaking under these conditions becomes a challenge as well.
I had the worst of it for about 3 months. I never completely recovered – to this day I cannot purse my lips well enough to whistle, and when I get tired, my left eye droops, making me look like an idiot, or at least like Sylvester Stallone.
In The Year From Hell, the precursor to the Bell’s Palsy was a severe sinus and ear infection. The doctor theorized that the infection got to my cranial nerve, triggering the palsy.
I’ve been very lucky, because reoccurances are common.
Well, I’ve been quite sick with some kind of very strong head cold the last few days.
Sometime today, I noticed that the tip of my nose is numb. I’m faily alarmed. I ran to the mirror, and everything is still working correctly. I did the “raise both eyebrows” test, the “smile with mouth closed” test; it’s all still working.
But last time, it hit overnight. I just woke up, and my face had stopped functioning. I have no idea how long it took for the paralysis to kick in: I was asleep.
I’ll let you know tomorrow whether I’ve once again become a drooling, drooping, incomprehensible fool. Some of you probably are thinking to yourselves, “How will we notice?” That’s not funny! Well, yes it is, but like I said…
I’m faily alarmed right now.