I had this too after a cruise from several years ago. My family told me I didn't have my "land legs" back yet, and it took almost a week. Although it certainly wasn't fun, I did sort of like it because it was a memory from the cruise.
RCI Radiance of the Seas Sep 2009
NCL Sun March 2008
Carnival Destiny June 2006
Carnival Ecstasy June 2002
Carnival Elation August 2000
Celebrity Century June 1998
Carnival Carnivale August 1993
I used to have the same problem, swaying about like a drunken sailor- it got worse each cruise and was lasting a couple of weeks, I also felt very fatigued. Then someone told me to start taking Bonine (Meclizine) at night a couple of nights before the cruise ends, and continue for 5 nights after. Since I started doing that I have not had any problem.
It will pass, it's just very unpleasant while it lasts and can be quite disabling.
I just returned from my first cruise. We cruised the Mediterranean for l2 days. I had absolutely no problem with sea sickness. Even with the first night being rather rocky, I was okay.
The day after arriving home, I woke up with a terrible dizziness as though rocking back on forth. My doctor prescribed Meclizine. It makes me very sleepy, so I sleep most of the day. Now, on the 4th day, it seems to be a bit better. I'm wondering if this is likely to happen in the future if I take another cruise. I've never had motion sickness of any kind before this. Perhaps I should've taken dramamine all along for the post cruise dizziness.
I have to wonder if Geekdll was on the Holiday. It can have a little more movement than most ships. I wonder if she is still dizzy. The only times that I have been dizzy after disembarking the ship have always went away after I sobered up.
I expierienced the exact same dizziness you had, when I returned from my very first cruise. It was even shorter than yours. It was a 4-Day Bahamian cruise onboard RCCL's Sovereign of the Seas. Just like you I was concerned. Maybe not to the point of going to the ER. The dizziness lasted for almost 8 days, in my case.
During that time, I was bumping into my co-worker's on the job (especially when passing them in confined/close spaces). I wouldn't have been surprised if my boss gave me a breathalizer test. I could not put-on my pants without sitting down first, or else I risked falling over when trying to balance on one foot.
On the evening of that 8th day following the cruise, I went to work-out at my local gym. After a session on the StairMaster, I stepped-off the machine and immediately noticed a significant decrease in dizziness. I can't say whether the StairMaster will work for anyone else expieriencing this form of dizziness; but it did for me.
I have heard people describe this dizziness as "Sea Legs". I have heard old sayings suggesting that sailors will stagger and wobble for a few days after returning to port. I have even watched a TV program where some people are afflicted with this dizziness, where it becomes chronic and stays with them for a very long time. The doctors called that condition "Disembarkation Syndrom". Fortunately, it is rare.
Like I said, the dizziness began to fade after 8 days, especially after my StairMaster workout.
When I returned from my second cruise, I did not expierience any of the dizziness at all. On my third cruise, I expierienced the dizziness a little, but it only lasted for 3 days.
Upon reflection, I realized that on my first and third cruise, my cabin was all the way forward, near the bow of the ship. On my second cruise, my cabin was exactly in the middle of the ship (midship). So, maybe the location of your cabin can affect whether you will expierience this dizziness upon returning home after the cruise.
I definetly heard that the cabin location can play a significant roll in preventing sea-sickness (which I never had). And that people whose cabins are located midship have less of a chance of becoming sea-sick (due to the greater stability and less motion). And maybe the same is true with this post-cruise dizziness?
My wife and I had some disorientation after a 4 nighter to the Bahamas in which the weather was rough. Her disorientation lasted a week after the cruise and mine lasted 2-3 weeks. The disorientation made it feel like everything was moving for a brief moment. Check into Mal de Debarquement Syndrome. With the fluid swishing back and forth it takes a bit for your ears to readjust. Even if the boat is not encountering rough seas it does sway back and forth slightly which might throw off your equilibrium.