aaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhh... a snake!
aaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhh… a snake!

Snakes are my least favorite animal, the way they slither and feel slimy makes my skin crawl.

When I was six years old I was bitten by a snake, it was stupid really, I found an interesting hole the dog was digging in and decided to dig as well. I never actually saw the baby rattler who was kind enough to share its venom, but my small body soon realized something was wrong. Baby rattlesnakes have neurotoxic properties in their venom and with my body already being compromised by my disease (Friedreich’s ataxia), it was a dangerous combination.

Once my mother realized I had been bitten by a rattle snake she drove me to the hospital as fast as she dare, my father was called and met us there. Being six I didn’t know why a snake bite was such a big deal but being the youngest of three, I was happy to have my parents to myself. It felt like ages before the doctor gave me the antivenom, I don’t remember much more of that day, but was later told they had administered the antivenom too quickly and sent me into anaphylactic shock.

I was moved to the Santa Rosa Hospital for the remainder of my stay and loved all the attention from family and friends who came to visit. During my stay at the hospital we learned I had been bitten by a baby rattlesnake, giving me dangerous amounts of venom.

I wasn’t diagnosed with my disease till six’s years later, but my symptoms started early because of the nerve damage from that baby rattlers venom.

I often wonder how my life would have been the different if I hadn’t been bitten by that snake, and the truth is no one can know, but I’m happy with who I am and what I’ve been through is a big part of that.

Stephen and I laughing
Stephen and I laughing

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