Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Today's PSA: Wear Shoes

I am the absolute worst about wearing shoes. As such, I'm always getting splinters and stubbing my toes and just generally getting stupid injuries that don't happen to the properly shod.  On the plus side, I'm always up to date on my tetanus shot!

So, a little over a week ago I was out wandering near the barn with no shoes, which is really the worst place to not be wearing shoes, when I felt a sudden sharp pain in my foot.  I hopped about for a minute, cussing and looking around for whatever it was that attacked me, but didn't see anything.  My foot was a little red, but there were no marks, so I assumed it was just a wasp or something and hobbled into the house to mix myself a wasp sting cure.  (AKA Margaritas)

The next day I felt a little under the weather, but I attributed it to the 3rd margarita I had and went on about my day.  On day two, I woke up barely able to walk, completely wracked with intense muscle pain all over my body.  I decided this was probably something more than a wasp sting or hangover and went to see the doctor. (Sometimes I make good decisions)

After reviewing my symptoms and doing some blood work to rule out horrifying diseases like ebola or something, the doctor concluded that I had most likely been bitten by a black widow spider. He also admonished me for not doing a better job of hunting down the offending insect to identify it.  You know you have a country doctor when you get fussed at for not properly IDing the creature that bit you instead of for wandering around with no shoes.

Luckily, black widow bites are not fatal in healthy adults. Unluckily, they are horribly painful. I could barely walk for about three days, and wasn't quite right for over a week afterwards.  The venom causes widespread muscle cramping that makes you feel like you did a triathlon with no training. I do not recommend the experience.

Always wear your shoes!

Spiders are lurking everywhere...


  1. I also hate wearing shoes. And this is one of my worst fears ever haha. That and being bitten by a brown recluse. There are so many spiders in my house I frequently wake up with them crawling on me :(

  2. I rarely wear anything but sandals, unless I am riding. Especially when it is 106 out. I pay for it on occasion, have yet to be bit by a spider, but I fully expect a scorpion sting everyday. Been lucky so far.....knock on wood!

  3. Oh Shannon, so sorry that happened to you!

    While cleaning up after the recent hurricane, I picked up a piece of lumber, on the underside of which - right next to my finger - was a healthy black widow. Thankfully, I noticed it in time. I took that as a sign to always wear gloves (or shoes) when prudent.

    Hope you're feeling 100% now. :D

  4. I also do not like shoes. I hate socks even more so.

  5. I'm a closed shoe fanatic outside the house - particularly at the barn - but at home it's barefoot all the way.

  6. Ouch. Taking Microbiology kinda ruined my barefoot attitude. Glad it wasn't anything worse.

  7. Hope you are feeling better. Honestly, stepping on a spider would not be anything I would expect either. I do wear shoes outside, but not always in the house. And always in the barn.

    Sending good vibes your way.

  8. YIKES! I'm glad I always wear my shoes!!!! I would be more worried about getting worms, but yeah spiders are bad too.... I don't like spiders! I hope you're all better now! I didn't know that about black widow bites.....


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