Wednesday, October 05, 2011

No Sick Days For Moms

I've been meaning to get on here and explain my recent, unplanned, blogging hiatus. I wanted to post, I had ideas! I just couldn't make it happen. We've had a rough month or so. Actually, things didn't really get rough until this Monday.

Peter has been logging some long hours. Last month he would usually come home for dinner but then he'd have a few more hours of work to do on the computer. Thus, during my normal uninterrupted computer times, the computer has been occupied for the past month.

Last week John got sick. A stomach bug. The way everything went down, including the moment he unleashed his projectile vomit, was eerily similar to the way it happened at his first birthday. For those who aren't familiar with the first birthday story: he vomited all over me just as we were sitting down to eat at his party (thankfully this time I escaped the regurgitated deluge). Then everyone staying at my mother's house ended up being violently ill; 6 of us all jockeying for position over the toilet for a memorable 12 hours.

So, I was immediately scared that the same horrible sickness was going to strike down Peter and I and everyone at Black Eyed Pea that night (where John threw up). As the week went on, I thought we'd escaped it. We hunkered down for a few days. John recovered and the weekend was mostly great. Except Sunday night I didn't feel so well.

Monday, I was vomiting all day. This, in itself, while not fun, is not highly unusual and might not have been so upsetting to me except for the fact that this week Peter's work schedule has been outrageous. He took Monday morning off. But he went in for the afternoon and the whole team had to stay until 9 pm to finish seeing the teems of patients at the clinic. This left me with John Monday afternoon which was probably a mistake because that wore me out. Regardless, we discovered that Peter cannot easily miss work. Tuesday a saint from my church took John from 7:30 am to 2 pm. Literally, I believe this woman is the reason I was able to get out of bed today. So I slept yesterday morning and had John yesterday afternoon again. I felt better yesterday, I wasn't nauseous but I was so tired. Walking from my bed to the bathroom made me feel like I needed a nap.

Overall things went pretty well, though. I even felt well enough to go out and get some chicken noodle soup for dinner. Which I ate and kept down for a while. But in the evening things fell apart. Peter didn't get home again until after nine. I wasn't sure that my energy level would ever rebound enough to take care of my highly energetic toddler. I was making phone calls to loved ones in tears mostly trying to enlist help for this weekend when Peter will be on call. I finally erupted into sobs which led to me throwing up all my chicken noodle soup!

I felt so desperate and discouraged mostly because it seemed like Peter can never take off work. Which isn't totally true. He technically can but it puts a huge burden on his colleagues. As I mentioned above, they all had to stay until late in the evening when he took off Monday morning. In my mind I felt the weight of the next three years of residency, and possibly beyond, thinking "I can't get sick for the next three years! Nothing can go wrong for three years!" I was just at the end of my rope. Clearly there were some sickness and fatigue induced histrionics involved. But all I could see last night was me having to care for John by myself everyday for the next three years having my big pink vomit bowl at the ready for heaving into (I have indeed been carrying around such a bowl. It works well for me because I'm not great at making it to the toilet or trash can.).

Today was so much better! I can't even explain how much better. Even though I'm not feeling 100%, the fog of tiredness and illness has lifted. It's amazing what that can do for one's outlook! Compared to last night it's as if I came out of a coma. The difference is night and day. I now realize it was a little dramatic of me to assume I would never have any energy again. But in my exhausted, nauseated stupor, I couldn't imagine how I would ever regain it. Today, I could actually walk to the bathroom without feeling like I needed to lay down. I had the energy to play with John. Things are back in a more normal perspective.

Anyways, God has been very gracious to us with our health, for which I am very thankful. It must be obvious that I don't usually get sick when one little stomach bug sends me into a tailspin of desperate tears. I'm thankful for our health and for the church. Another family from church was willing to take John this afternoon if I needed it. I didn't have to take them up on it but it's a huge blessing to have people to turn to in times of need. And I'm also thankful for big pink bowls. Seriously, usually when I get sick I have to clean up my own vomit from the floor, or wherever I throw up when I don't make it to the bathroom. My vomit bowl solved the problem!


Anonymous said...

I am so glad you are feeling better. Mommies are not supposed to get sick. You have been in my prayers.

Vanessa Rogers said...

Oh Leslie!! Poor you!! That sounds awful. I know what you mean about when your sick, even thinking about doing anything energetic can wear you out. I completely understand that feeling. I'm glad your feeling better.

Peter and Leslie said...

Thank you for the prayers! I can always use more!