Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Still Alive & Kickin'!

I can't believe how long it has been since my last post. And since this past weekend when I was kindly urged by some family (you know who you are, D&L!) to get on here & say something - here I am!
Thanksgiving was great. I got up, puttered around my house, went for a run, & then headed over to Mom & Dad's to make some noodles. I went to Mike's grandma's with him for the noonish time meal & then we went to my parent's for the 4ish time meal. Needless to say, we weren't very hungry for round two. I feel kind of bad for my mom b/c the meal at their house is always #2 for her kids. We just don't have too much appetite for another round. But, I did eat her stuffing with much more gusto that Grandma Stewart's oyster stuffing. OH MY! Does anybody out there like that oyster stuff?
The day after Thanksgiving started early. I had to work my 2nd job from 2-9, so I had to get my shopping done quick! My family has a completely insane tradition of shopping on Black Friday. It's not just me & my parents; it's also my siblings & their families, my grandparents, & my aunt & uncle. All in all, it's 15 people. We can't count Mike b/c he says he would have to smoke some weed to be able to go out that day. So I gladly let him stay home ;-) So I shopped, I worked, & then I crashed. Saturday was a lot the same.
Sunday morning was when things just went totally south. I had the feeling that I was coming down with something late Saturday night. I woke up & my left ear was really painfully achy. I hadn't had that feeling since I was a little kid. Sunday morning I got up & just felt really draggy as I got ready for church but I was hoping I'd shake it off after I had some coffee. It was a 5th Sunday so we had our regular morning service, a fellowship carry-in dinner & then an afternoon service. We also had a short choir practice after that for the Christmas Cantata. I got home at about 3:30, changed my clothes, & drove myself to the urgent care clinic. My ear was hurting very badly & my throat was getting scratchy. NOT GOOD. I waited forever (trying not to think about how I was breathing in all the germs from the other sick people) & finally saw the doctor. He thought it might be a mild ear infection. I was chilling but had not developed a fever so he wrote a script for a z-pack & sent me on my way. I got it filled & started taking it immediately. Went home, Mike came by & tucked me in & I was asleep by 8:30 or 9:00.
Monday was worse. In fact, it was probably about the worst day of sickness. My fever was around 103 for hours & my throat was full of infection (I'll spare you the details). I called my regular doctor & he advised me to go to the ER or see him first thing the next morning. I opted not to rack up a bajillion dollar hospital bill & waited to see him Tuesday morning.
So, I'm at the doctor's getting a chest x-ray & blood work b/c he thinks I either have pneumonia, mono, or leukemia. Yep, leukemia. Evidently it can start with a terrible throat infection. Who knew? My mom took me home to wait for the phone call. At this point I'm pretty upset. I didn't' really think I had leukemia, but I was really concerned about the mono thing. I didn't want to think about how long that can linger & how it affects the rest of your life. Scary stuff.
The phone finally rings that afternoon. Leukemia - no. Mono - no. So what gives? What is making me so miserable??? Acute tonsillitis. I never knew it could be so bad. I was given strict orders not to go anywhere until I had seen the Doctor again the following Monday & he gave me a ten day course of Levaquin (an antibiotic that has the side effect of rupturing tendons - how fun!).
So, ten days of drugs later I am feeling pretty ok. I still get really tired by the end of the day. I think I have begun to realize that I need more sleep on a regular basis. I just can't do what I used to do - how sad...I'm aging!
And it seems like the last couple of days I've been surrounded by people with upset stomachs. Fun! I am terrified of the stomach flu. I am scared to throw up. I am scared about feeling nauseous. Am I the only one? Seriously, I should probably be counseled about it; it's a huge stronghold of fear in my mind. Pathetic, I know.
Anyway, I spent a whole week at my house & I really loved having the quiet time there by myself. I got to feeling a lot more comfortable there. I know the sounds & smells better, if you know what I mean. The worst part of the whole deal is that I didn't have any paid time off left. My company is a little unconventional in the way that they handle vacation, sick time & personal time. It's all considered the same & they are fairly liberal with how much you get (I'm a six year employee & I get 26 days a year plus 7 paid holidays). The catch is that none of your days carry over year to year so many employees are trying to get their last days of in December. Since we only have 9 employees I try to make sure all my time is used up so that we aren't too short-staffed. Well, let's just say that plan totally came back to haunt me. I missed 5 1/2 days of work with no pay. And I missed all of my scheduled hours at my 2nd job, too. So it's going to be interesting the next couple of weeks as I figure out where to cut some corners. I had some money saved (thank God!) but that is kind of a lot to cover, especially this time of the year when I had been spending a little more for Christmas gifts & things.
All of this to say, the Lord has been right here with me the whole time. I am so grateful to Him for protecting me when I am afraid, helping me sleep when I don't feel well, & comforting me with His Word. I had some wonderful hours during that week just reading my Bible & loving it more than I have in quite some time (to my shame). I also had a nice visit with my sister. She came by one morning & we spent an hour just catching up & enjoying each other's company. Somehow I let my life get too busy/overwhelming to delight in those kinds of moments on a regular basis.
NEWS FLASH!!! I just got a text from Mike that says he is NOT getting laid off at the end of this week. Thank God they are keeping 65 employees & he is one of them. The Lord has been so good to answer prayer in this matter.
I have more great stories to tell, but they will have to wait for a later date. Hopefully soon I can give you some details about the wedding. We haven't planned much b/c we were waiting to see if Mike would be laid off. That question has been now been answered so it's time to move forward!