The Great Salt Blog
We’ve pretty much ruled out any problems with the heart and now we are looking at the kidneys, hence the nephrologists. He is conducting some more extensive labs in hopes of avoiding having to put me through more invasive testing. As part of these labs I was required to take sodium chloride. Yes, table salt. He said that he could just send me home and tell me to pour salt on everything I eat until it tastes bad for three days or he could give me tablets. I opted for tablets. Especially since he said that every one who has opted to over salt their own food had not poured on enough salt and therefore was required to redo the lab work.
Salt tablets, I can do that. Simple enough. Not so, just finding the tablets (we’re talking table salt here folks) in and of it’s self was an ordeal. I couldn’t find a pharmacy that carried salt tablets, which are mostly used by marathon runners I am told. The one pharmacist suggested I go home, take my saltshaker, measure out the proper amount of spoonfuls of salt and shovel it down. Hmmm, that is unthinkably disgusting! I can’t even imagine taking a spoon full of salt and eating it! Let alone multiple spoonfuls.
Rehearsing all of this to Cameron (he's always able to see the humor), he jokingly said, “Well you know, the feed store down the road carries blocks of salt.” Yes, I can see it now, a big giant salt block in the middle of our dinning room table. Neighbor kids asking, "dude, what is your mom doing?". While throwing a waded up napkin and laughing at him I responded, “Well then don’t be surprised when the neighbors mention they saw your wife down the road fending the cows off for their salt lick”.
Finally I find it at a specialty pharmacy. Thank heavens, I was getting worried I would have to face those cows. However, they are out of the tablets and will have to order some in. So a few days later I have the coveted salt tablets. I thought the worst was over. By the second day I was miserable, I couldn’t eat anything. My appetite was ruined. Nothing tasted right, foods I normally loved I couldn’t eat. A perfectly wonderful batch of chocolate chip cookies I had made, couldn’t even get through one cookie. I kept double checking everything I ate because it didn’t taste anything like what I had put in my mouth. Anything salty like tortilla chips and salsa sent me into a down hill spiral of endless nausea. I could see the look in my boys eyes, their expressions said something like “uh, there’s something wrong with mom”. One even asked, “Have you thrown up yet?”
If any of you happened to see me around town and wondered why my mouth was gapping open like a frog with a fly stuck in its throat, well now you know. It was the salt. No amount of water or other liquids helped either. In fact the more I drank the more I felt like the Dead Sea was churning within the very depths of my belly. If you’ve ever been to the beach and caught an unexpected mouth full of salt water you’ll understand how it burns inside your throat and nose, your stomach feels ill and your lips and tongue are so salty you can’t stop smacking them together. Well multiply that by the Pacific Ocean. It was literally uncomfortable to close my mouth, as this seems to produce more saliva, which was saturated with salt. I constantly felt like I swallowed a wave right out of the Gulf of Mexico. I’d say the Great Salt Lake, however, there are no waves in the Great Salt Lake.
Seriously I was so overly saturated with salt I made sure to stay clear of any cows. A human salt lick is what I was. I highly don’t recommend it unless of course your doctor does. And if you are unfortunate enough that he does, you now know what to expect.
Friday morning I anxiously went to the nephrologists to finish the lab work. As I left his office with a skip in my step singing rapturous melodies I couldn't help but to think it was a grand day indeed not only was the sun shining but no more salt tablets!