A Date With Destiny

Updated: Jun 4

So much for writing my blog every week as I have already failed after the second week so instead, I shall write as and when the mood takes me. If I actually waited until I had something to write about then I might never write!

We pick ourselves up and start again - although I'd be a bit fed up if I was that penguin. But sometimes, life doesn't go as we planned.

The reason I got behind on my blog - I was trying desperately to finish my middle grade novel for a competition. I figured that why spend all year writing it, when you can do it all in three weeks. Okay, not completely true, but certainly in those last few weeks my fingers were flying as they typed all the words that had for so long been hidden from the world. But alas, no matter how many words I wrote, I could not finish it in time. Every time I thought I could see the end, my brain would put another obstacle in the way. A whole new battle that I never knew even existed suddenly became the epicentre of the book - it all made sense (I confess most of it hadn't before that!) but I didn't give myself enough time to complete and so now I have all the time in the world to perfect, edit and even plan my next book in the series.

As I write this, the world is lost and struggling to make sense to many people. Each day is a challenge and a question of survival. But for me, as the title says - it was a date with destiny that could have had catastrophic results for me.

No, not a date on the calendar,


A date that I ate.

No, it didn't look like this, but it did look sweet and innocent and I thought it was a healthy option as my two current goals are to finish my novel and to lose weight. I've always enjoyed eating the dried, sweet, sticky dates and would often have a few each morning for my elevenses - but NEVER again!

I'd eaten several dates already, and then I put another in my mouth. Instantly, there was a burning sensation. My throat became constricted and the pain was so immense that I could barely speak. I immediately spat the date out but by then, a massive ulcer had formed on the roof of my mouth. I squashed it with my tongue and a load of blood poured out. I still hadn't associated it with the date at that point because as I said earlier, I've always eaten dates, so I figured I was just run down and it was a co-incidence that I happened to be eating at the time and had aggravated this unknown ulcer.

Days passed, but my throat was still burning and I was struggling to swallow solid food. I presumed it needed time for the ulcer to heal. I eventually managed to persuade my other half to look at my throat for me with a torch and he described it as having a bright red footprint on my throat. (sorry for the wrong colour GIF but you get the idea.) And yes, that rather freaked me out because then I imagined little people taking over me.

As I didn't seem to be improving, and couldn't work out what had caused it, I started searching Google. People always warn you not to search medical cases on Google because they only highlight the worst scenarios so instead of looking up burning throat ulcers and causes, I played it safe and looked up dates. The emoji below says it all...

What I presumed to be a healthy option was quite the opposite. They are apparently quite common for causing allergies consisting of: severe rhinitis as well as itching of the mouth; and cases of urticaria, angioedema, and anaphylactic shock so I guess I got off quite lightly with just a bleeding mouth and difficulty swallowing. Then I read something more shocking. (you might want to shut your eyes for this bit) Organic dates can contain bugs, spiders or worms which can burrow inside the fruit. A warning of pests inside the date is brown specks inside that look sawdust.

It reminds me of the joke - what's worse than finding a maggot in your apple - half a maggot!

So, I still don't know what caused my throat to burn and the ulcer to appear other than the date affected me. I believe the footprint has now gone and my throat after a week is just starting to recover. I wasn't able to go to the doctor so I had a phone conversation which wasn't exactly helpful when all I wanted was someone to see how sore and raw my throat was but there we go. No more dates for me and I would advise the same for you.

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