Pneumonia

Nebulizing in the Emergency Room at Gangnam Severance Hospital.

A few weeks ago, I was struck with a bout of pneumonia. After several days of fever and burning lungs that antibiotics couldn’t tackle, my girlfriend took me to the Emergency Room at Gangnam Severance Hospital on a Saturday night. They sent me home with a bag of drugs.

But by Sunday noon the fever was back up to 103.2 F (39.5 C). This time my girlfriend couldn’t come to me, but she called an ambulance, and back to the ER I went. I spent the next 28 hours there, and didn’t leave the hospital until the following Sunday. I spent another week at home recovering.

I’ve wanted to write something about what I went through, but I’m finding it difficult. Sickness, like dreams, is mostly interesting to the person experiencing it. Unpleasant as it was, it was nothing more than a few days in the hospital, a few days of feeling rotten and then less rotten. That it’s one of the worst things I’ve ever gone through is maybe evidence of how lucky I’ve been in life. It was horrible, but I’m not sure it was interestingly horrible.

I’m also tired of thinking about it. I want to be well again, and mostly I am, though my lungs are still recovering. Maybe later, when this is fully behind me, I’ll be able to turn my hospitalization into amusing anecdotes. For now, it’s enough to say that it happened and that I’m OK again. And if you’re looking for things to do in Seoul, I don’t recommend pneumonia.


Originally published at Josh Philip Ross.