It was late Monday morning. My dad (who I live with) had closed off the wood heater since we would not need it that night or the next day. He left the house at 4:30am to drive my aunt up north to a doctor's appointment. I was sleeping hard. I slept right through my 10am alarm (which is very loud and sounds like a police siren).
I woke up a bit past 11am coughing, sneezing and gasping. The wind was blowing the soot from the pipe back down into the house! It took me a minute to get my feet under me. I opened the windows, shut my bedroom door (to hopefully save the fish from whatever it was), opened the heater door and turned a fan on it, opened the doors and screens, grabbed the dogs, and got the heck out! My lungs ached, but I was out. At least I had the good sense to throw my phone and a soda in my pocket.
Luna (my cat) went over to the front door and jumped in the small hole in the screen (going in the house is a no-no for her as my dad has cat allergies) as I ran towards the front yard with a dog under each arm. I worried that I would have to run back in after her when she scrambled and jumped back out of the door sneezing and coughing, running towards me. I knew whatever was going on must have been bad to run Luna out of the house.
I sat in the front yard for 4 hours in my night clothes and a coat. I had a book in my car to read to keep me occupied, but my vision was kind of blurry. And I was tired. VERY tired. But I sat there until Dad got back. His cell phone had been off and when I did get a hold of him, he had gotten mad for bothering him over it. He just assumed I was saying the heater stank. The smell and everything was mostly gone when he got home. He got out our Rainbow to purify the air and told me to start cleaning his camper out back (which I had promised to do already).
I was so tired, I couldn't work for long. I felt better when I sat still. Every time I breathed out, I smelled soot and my voice was going out. My cough got worse. I felt disorented and my head throbbed. I went in the house and told Dad that I couldn't do it to which he yelled. I didn't care. The vessels were tightening on the back of my neck (a sensation I know well because I have FHM) and I couldn't breath, so I jumped into a hot shower which helped some. I laid down on my bed and text a friend about what was going on and got a frantic reply from her. Apperently I was showing all the signs of Carbon Monoxide poisoning! I tried to tell dad, but I just wanted to lay still, so I wasn't very adament. He brushed the idea off as stupid. I looked over and saw my snail Sandy floating dead in my tank. She had bred with my male and I last saw her crawling up the tank in the 4 inches I had left her to lay her eggs above the waterline. Now, I worry about the rest of my pets
Dad found out that I was "most likely" right when he looked at the pipes the next day and they collapsing in on themselves. The metal was rotten looking. My lungs still hurt today and I am still fatigued. My legs are sore with a charley horse kind of ache. And yet I worry more about my pets