The Young & Infected: A Soap Opera. Chapter 1: You Give Me Fever


Oh my good. Fucking. GOD.

So let me set the scene for you.

It’s the middle of the night. My house is on it’s regular 75 degrees (okay maybe 73) and I’m in my bed, under my blanket, my comforter, on top of my mattress warmer (set to high) and my electric heating pack that I’m trying to huddle all four of my limbs under.


And I’m fucking COLD. And shaking. Like a leaf.

Finally I just get up and dive into my bathtub and run the tap on boiling. So, I’m sitting there. Naked. Frozen. Very, very confused. This is an unusual event, even for me.

I somehow manage to get it together and have a fitful night of sleep. Then the next day I woke up early because I had a port study. It was a long wait. Two hours before I finally got in to discover there was no problem.



I was exhausted. Too exhausted to contemplate walking the dog. In my mind it wasted less energy to drive home. Pick up Happy. And then drive us over to my mom’s house to let him out in her backyard.

All goes as planned, yada yada, I’m TIRED. After Happy does his Happy business, I get us both back in the car. As I’m driving home I start feeling it again. The mysterious cold. I open the windows so I can get the deep Florida humidity in my lungs. I turn up the heat in my car. But by the time we’re back at the house my bones are rattling around.

It takes me a couple of minutes to steel myself to actually get out of the car, get my purse, and corral Happy into the right walkway.

And then I drop all my crap—bolt upstairs, strip naked, and center myself under my bath faucet on the hottest setting possible.


So I’m setting there. Ten minutes. Submerged in boiling hot water. When my toes start to turn BLUE. And I turn around to look at my mirror and my lips are turning BLUE.

I leap out of the bathtub, grab my cell phone, leap back into the bathtub. My teeth are chattering and I’m shaking so hard I can barely explain what’s happening to the nurse at my doctor’s office.

“Do you have a fever?” She asked.

“I d-d-d-d-don’t get fevers!” I said. Which is the truth. I do not get fevers. It’s a part of the immunodeficiency thing. I had never had a fever.

“Is this a fever?” I asked, trying to process the idea. “Do you get really cold—do you s-s-shake??”

“You need to go to the ER, right now,” the nurse told me. She had just told the doctor what was happening. “Get out of the bathtub and go RIGHT NOW. If it’s your port that’s infected it can spread quickly.”


I called my mom while I dried myself off and got a hospital bag together of the things that seemed most important at the time: my heating pad, a pair of warm socks, and the warmest sweater I have.

We get to the ER and they take us into a room. The doctor says he’s not sure what’s going on with me, but he’d already spoken with my doctor and if I have a fever, he’s going to have to admit me.

“You can’t admit me,” I say, because the idea is preposterous. “It’s my husband birthday weekend.”


But I wasn’t that worried—because there was no way I had a fever. I did not get fevers.

The nurse takes my temperature and I watch the numbers, cross-eyed, steadily rise and rise.

And it landed on 101.


And wouldn’t you know it? I was totally fucked.


And THAT is the first part in this new mystery series: The Young & Infected.

Stay tuned for more gripping tales, wild turns, and intrigue that you couldn’t conceive of in your most erroneous flights of fancy!

Is the port infected? Make your predictions below because my life is like a wild game of chance but most of the paths lead to things like surgical disembowelment and migraine storms. Why shouldn’t we have fun and reader commentary?