You know how they say it takes 10,000 hours of experience to be classified as an expert on something?
Well, I'm a real live epistaxis expert.
In the spirit of Halloween I'm giving y'all a blood trigger warning for the rest of this post, so click through the jump to read on!
Photos by Kelly Kai
I've spent years of my life sitting in my bathroom with a wadded up tissue permanently pressed to my face trying to stop blood from draining out of my body. This sounds like a spooky nightmare, but it's not as horrifying as you'd think. I've actually racked up a couple of ridiculously hilarious experiences involving me bleeding all over things/people/places, but I'll save those golden anecdotes for another time.
My nose has been through so much trauma over the years. The sheer amount of pinching and pressing it's endured has probably been enough force to have sculpted it from a potato to its current shape and form. Chronic nose bleeds were especially useful in high school when I was a punk ass teenager and could make my nose bleed on command. Truly a blessing and a curse. The blessing being that I'd constantly abuse my power and fake sick my way out of class. The curse was (and still is) that having a nosebleed leaves me in this weird physical/mind space where I get super dazed and weak. You remember when Voldemort is born into that creepy serpent baby thing-- a weaker, vulnerable, bleedy version of his original powerful self? Yeah, thats me after my nose stops bleeding. It's cool though, because having my nose constantly gushing blood as a kid was my entryway into figuring out how to hammer on in shitty situations. It's actually a miracle that I made it through and survived the first half of my life losing blood every day. It just makes me think about how many people pummel through life without having their bodies working at optimum level.
Part of me is royally pissed off that nobody ever taught me to pay attention to my own body. The other part is just grateful I finally figured this situation out. I honestly didn't think it was ever worth mentioning to people, I just quietly coasted through my childhood with the possibility of blood gushing out of my nose at any given moment. Turns out the veins in my nose are just uber sensitive, especially when the weather is changing. My body has a full blown nuclear meltdown whenever it has to adjust to the dry cold. The sensitive veins are hereditary and inherited from my shitty dad, 'The Steven'. (It's just another reminder of my daddy issues.) I realize now that the main cause of these nosebleeds was because my immune system was shot due to my crappy diet of tv dinners and fast food. How the hell is a kid supposed to figure that out and tell someone they need help? Bleeding all the time was absolutely normal in my child eyes. Complacency is a slow killer. The good news is that I dug myself out of the malnourished health hole my childhood left me in. I treat my body like a temple now so I only get nosebleeds when the air gets cold and dry. I am truly a phoenix reborn from the ashes.