I’m sure there are people who think I mean the sort of danger that comes from riding too fast and crashing, or “being hit by a car and injured” type of danger. But what I really mean is that riding motorcycle is dangerous to a marriage!
The type of danger I am talking about is how a marriage can be affected when one person likes to ride, convinces the other less than enthusiastic person to ride, and then bad things happen.
When friends hear my husband has a motorcycle, they ask if I like to ride. My answer is always the same – he loves his bike, and I love him, so sometimes I ride. My idea of a nice time with him on the bike is a really hot day, a ride for about 30-60 minutes, some lunch at the other end, and a ride back home. This is not the type of ride motorcycle enthusiasts enjoy. They want to go far, and see things – trees, landscape, towns they’ve never been to, other motorcycles – and the more winding roads the better.
After a friend asked today how to get a bee stinger out of her daughter’s hand without making her scream more than she already was, I was reminded of one of the less than stellar days I spent riding with my husband.
It was a beautiful, sunny, warm October day. The kids were at school, and I took the day off work to go riding for an end of the season trip. Even though it was warm for Toronto, I dressed in layers knowing the wind would be cool. We headed out and travelled north. Not a good sign, but I figured I could take a bit of the chilly air since we wouldn’t be out too long before we stopped for a snack or some hot coffee.
I’m sitting on the back, listening to my ipod, taking in the nice view and freezing to death. I keep thinking about how many more minutes I can last before having to ask to stop when all of a sudden I feel a horrible pain on my forehead. I put my hand up to touch it, and my helmet moves backwards a few inches, and it starts to hurt more, and I am starting to panic. It feels like a burning and I can’t figure out if something hit me, but I saw nothing. After a few minutes with the pain getting worse, I gently say “honey, I think we need to stop for a minute because it feels like something hit me in the head”. He pulls off to the side of the road, we get off the bike, he carefully takes my helmet off and a wasp flies out of it. It turns out the wasp stung me, and when I touched my helmet and it lifted, the wasp went inside and kept stinging me.
We cut the ride short and went home. At this point, I can’t believe the pain and heat I feel and the headache that came from this stupid little wasp. I was laying on the couch, my husband made me tea and gave me aspirin, and I spent a few hours moaning and vacillating between thinking I was acting like a big baby and feeling worse by the hour.
Several hours later, I noticed I had lumps on my neck and behind my ear. I ended up going to a walk-in clinic and told the doctor about the lumps and the headache. I did NOT tell him about the wasp. And he says to me “that’s odd, is there any chance you were stung in the hairline?”. I confess that yes, I was stung on the opposite side of the head from where I have the lumps but didn’t think it would be related. He told me the sting caused swollen lymph nodes on the opposite side (that’s how your body works) and the swollen lymph nodes were pressing against the nerve that controls the facial muscles on that side of my face. He gave me medicine to address the swelling and then told me that if I had waited until the next day to come in, I probably would have had permanent nerve damage on one side of my face.
I went home and told my husband the news. After he asked if I was going to be okay, he asked if I’d like to go on a ride the next day to make up for having to call the ride short today. Imagine.
…By the way, back to how to remove a stinger that is stuck in the skin, soak the stung area in warm water which opens the pores, then you can see the stinger better and scratch it or pluck it out with tweezers. Just in case you got hung up on the bee sting part of the story.