Yesterday, I found a tick on my leg. It was huge and gross and I totally panicked. This is my great fear. And it happened.
I had pulled my pant leg up at work because I wanted to see if I needed to shave my legs before getting a pedicure after work, and there it was. A big, brown tick just hanging from my shin. The slow motion realization during that moment was almost funny. My brain went, “Is that?! Is that what?! Is that what I think it is?! IS THAT A TICK?!?!????”
I went to our on-site clinic and they pulled it out with some tweezers. It had bitten me, but hadn’t gotten any blood yet (they think). When the lady pulled it out, it sorta went thwunk as it came away from my skin. “Well, that felt weird,” I said. She laughed a little too hard. I don’t think her patients have much of a sense of humor.
It was still alive and wriggling around, and she put it in a plastic baggie and then made me walk it down the hall to where they identify the ticks. First of all, the fact that the clinic at Brookhaven employs people who identify ticks (among other duties, I presume) is so weird and funny to me. Long Island has one of the highest incidences of Lyme Disease, and Brookhaven has a huge population of deer on the campus, so it makes sense they would have clinicians available to treat and diagnose this, but still.
Also, carrying that gross creature down a hallway was such a bizarre experience. I kept looking at it and then shuddering and looking away. I also felt, for some reason, like I was a kid getting sent to the principal’s office. I think it has something to do with the 1950s school vibe of the decor in our clinic.
Anyway, the worst part: it’s a dog tick, so the chances of Lyme exposure are low, but I could have been exposed to Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, which is so much worse. Yay.