I hate blood noses so much. Probably because they happen fairly often for me. Not frequently, but more than one every three months I’d say is a fair average. I’ve woken up at night with one, woken up in the morning to one, had one at work, had one at school, had one at sport, had one at the shops… The sudden onset always gets me. Sometimes up to a day beforehand I can maybe sense that one is possibly going to happen, but it doesn’t prepare you. They don’t usually worry me, just a small annoyance. The one I had just then worried me a little, because I have a cold or the flu, and because of the amount and size of the blood and clots. It doesn’t disgust me.
I think one of my funniest instances was when I met up with a fellow Achaean when I was down in Melbourne, we were at a shopping centre. Nearly time to say goodbye, I get a message from Mum to pick up some tampons and smokes for her. Followed shortly by my nose starting to bleed. Luckily my friend had a napkin in her bag from lunch, which served better use than using my hand until I got the the ladies toilets. If you’ve ever been in most public toilets, you’ll know that there is no paper really absorbant or soft, or more than one ply. So I folded up a paper towel (so bad for my nose!), shoved it in the nostril in question, grabbed a few for the road, cleaned up a bit (only because being covered in blood usually scares people) and off I went to the supermarket.
Of course, I don’t know the rules about the supermarkets down there, but I did know one thing. I grabbed the packet of tampons, madly hoping it was the ones she wanted, with one hand, the other holding onto the tissue in my nose. At home I may be able to walk around with a tissue stuffed up my nose, but out in public it looks better if you hold onto it. So at this time of the day, the supermarket was of course, fairly busy. The express, or do it yourself queue had a line half the aisle long, and the shopping trolleys in the normal checkouts were mostly full or overflowing.
Now at this point all I wanted to do was get out of there, and figure out how to buy cigarettes in this place. Imagine, if you will, a teenage girl, one hand waving a box of tampons around, the other holding a scrunched up paper towel up her nose with hints of blood around. It was no surprise that upon my request, several shoppers in the normal checkouts let me cut in front of them. Not sure much screams ‘Pity me and let me in front’ quite like tampons and a nosebleed. Of course you don’t talk normally when you have a paper towel stuffed up one nostril either. If the tampons were mine, maybe I’d be less obviously guesturing that it was my only item than I was. After quickly buying my item, praising the generosity (or pity) of complete strangers, I was directed to a service counter to buy the smokes. Of course they want ID. Not sure if the picture quite matches what I looked at like this particular instance though, but it passed and I was good to go.
I find myself explaining to people, after I have blocked the flow of blood somewhat, that it ‘happens all the time, don’t worry’. It’s still not the best image though. And can be quite amusing to friends. Also amusing is the differing advice of people. ‘Tilt your head back, tilt your head forward, pinch it, apply ice.’ Well three of the four are correct to my knowledge. And even if tilting my head back would stop it faster, the feel of blood running down my throat and to my stomach really doesn’t sit well. 5 minutes and it’s usually stopped enough to remove the tissue. I’m used to it by now.
I don’t know why I get them so frequently, whether it’s the weather or what. Who nose. Ha.