Live to share. This is my life. I share. Some call it over-sharing. I call it, being real. And in usual fashion, I am about to get real. Really real.
On Sunday, Jan. 28, my hubby woke up sick. It sucked because he never gets sick. EVER. I felt so bad. I did what I could for him, but tried to also stay away from him. Being an asthmatic, I am super susceptible to colds and such and so that is why I tried to stay away. And, as the normal hand washing continued, I also broke out the GermX hand sanitizer, using it after everything. (yes, you could say I maybe went a little overboard, but I get sick SO EASY.) Al went to work on Monday, but left early because he was starting to feel worse. Tuesday came and went and he didn’t go to work at all. I know Al is sick when he doesn’t go to work.
Again, trying to be a nice wife, I was trying to tend to him but truly didn’t want to catch whatever it was he had going on. I even slept on the couch while he took to the bedroom. It was now, Wednesday, Jan. 31. The day came and went and he was feeling better. Thank God!
I had an event in the Twin Cities that Wednesday so I didn’t spend much time at home or at work. On the way home Wednesday evening, I started to drag…my throat was kind of getting sore and I just wasn’t feeling 100 percent. And that is when I knew, I caught it. But I don’t completely put the blame on Al. There were several people at work who were sick and germs were spreading like wildfire. No amount of sanitizer could probably kill the germs that were being spread.
On Thursday, Feb 1, I woke up and knew this was it. I was plagued. I called in sick, thinking I just needed to rest one day and maybe tomorrow I maybe better and then be back to work. Friday morning came and went and I didn’t make it to work. But, I made it to the doctor. I was hit and hit hard. Yes, I had my flu shot and yes, I have even had the pneumonia shot. Again, as an asthmatic, you do everything in your power not to get sick. And even though I had the pneumonia shot, I was worried, which is why I went to the doctor.
So, how did I feel? You know when people are sick and they say they felt like a Mac truck hit them. That was me…times 10. I felt like I was run over by a whole damn fleet of Mac trucks. It was awful.
Yep, had to wear a mask at the doctor’s office. And I think my look says it all. Diagnoses? Influenza. Prescription for Tamiflu filled and started. I was super thankful I did not have pneumonia. You have no idea.
I spent much of Friday either on the couch or in bed. It was a combination of sleep, coughing and tossing and turning because the body aches, OH THE BODY ACHES! Every inch on my body hurt, from my toes to the tip of my head. Awful isn’t a strong enough word. I can’t even explain how I felt. Saturday came and went and it was much of the same. Cough, sleep, cough, sleep, toss and turn, body aches.
Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 4. So much for our typical feast of fun appetizers and a couple of brewskis. It was water, hot Tang, water, hot Tang and homemade chicken noodle soup made by my wonderful hubby, who was on the mend, feeling better, even though he was still hacking up a storm. And, now, added to the mix was hot packs on my face as my sinuses made my face hurt so bad I could hardly see straight. I was just a big old hot mess bundle. It was gross, just gross.
Sunday night was horrible. I didn’t feel like I was getting any better. At. All. And, all I wanted was my mommy. And obviously, that wasn’t happening. Which made it worse. Al was doing everything he could to make me feel better. He is a super good nurse. And because he was already feeling crummy and was dealing with his own cold, he didn’t mind being near me.
Monday, Feb. 5 I woke up and felt even worse. I was in tears. Literally. My face hurt. My body ached. I was a coughing fool. And why and how could all this crap being coming out of my nose. HOLY CRAP. It was dreadful.
I didn’t want to go back in because I honestly thought they would throw me in the hospital and because I am real, and always speak the truth, I didn’t go because simply, I can’t afford it. As awful as that sounds, that is the only reason I didn’t go back in. I know my medical bills aren’t anyway near the bills of someone with cancer or other horrible illness/disease. It hurts my head and heart to even think about the bills those poor people must have. But I owe close to $4,000 in medical bills and a hospital stay right now was not going to happen. So, I crawled back on the couch and tried to sleep it off.
I also sent a message to the doctor who saw me on Friday and told her what was happening. A sinus infection was looming, my cough wasn’t getting any better, my breathing sucked (I was using my nebulizer about every four hours) and I just flat out didn’t feel better. I was about to start my fourth day of my five-day Tamiful regiment and thought I should at least START to feel better. Not worse. She immediately got back to me and said she was putting in a prescription for Amoxicillin and Prednisone. She also said if I continued to get worse or was feeling dehydrated I needed to go back in.
Al, again, being the best husband ever, went to Target to get my meds and I took them immediately when he brought them home. Then I slept. And drank. And ate Jell-O. And a banana. And some more homemade soup. I have to admit, the whole eating thing has been a struggle. Which obviously means I am sick because I NEVER have a problem eating. But this influenza, plus now sinus infection, I have had a hard time eating anything. It actually isn’t any fun.
It’s now Tuesday, Feb. 6. I have had one full day of my antibiotics and one full day of prednisone. And, LOTS of sleep and rest and liquids. It is helping. I am starting to feel better. I plan on taking one more full day of rest and the goal is to go back to work on Thursday. This was definitely not how I had planned to use my PTO hours. Good thing I had enough.
This is what influenza/sinus infection looks like. It’s not pretty. It hurts. It sucks. It’s awful. But it was real and it happened and I would never in a million years wish it on my very worst enemy.
More news to share
So, last Wednesday, Jan. 31, I was invited to be part of a media panel at ClearWay Minnesota. Click HERE to find out more about the organization. It was pretty awesome. I got to share my story about smoking, how I quit and a little about my asthma journey. But moreover, I got to share about being a reporter and how we go about doing stories and basically, how the newsroom works in a newspaper setting.
There were two other media people on the panel – a former TV reporter from a Twin Cities TV station and a news director and on-air personality from a radio station in Mankato. We all shared some great information about how each of our newsroom operate and it was an eye-opening experience and one I hope I get the opportunity to have again. Thanks, ClearWay, for letting me be a part of your day.
The healthy living journey continues…
I will try and make this short and sweet, but it probably won’t happen. Just saying! After losing my parents last year, I kind of gave up on myself. I didn’t care about my weight and a few of my bad habits reared their ugly heads. Like stopping at one convenience store to buy treats and then stopping at another to ditch all the evidence. Yes, that happened. A lot. More than it should. As I felt my clothes getting tighter and tighter and my attitude and motivation going deeper and deeper in a dark downward spiral, I all of sudden decided enough was enough. I am not one for New Year’s resolutions, but I am one for letting a new year be a time for a new beginning. So, I did what I knew needed to be done. I stepped on the scale.
Yes, this is real. That is what my scale read when I finally stepped on it Jan. 2. As much as I would like to say I was shocked, I really wasn’t. But…it was what I needed to see to make it really real. For me, I knew what I needed to do for me. I got in touch with the awesome folks at Nice Juicery and ordered myself a three-day cleanse. Most cleanses are six juices a day, but I opted for five juices per day. By the way, I love their juices. I truly do. These people are awesome!
These were my juices each day for three days and then I ate a healthy meal for supper. Honestly, I would do juices every day if I could. It’s easy and I don’t have to think about what I am going to eat, which is always a struggle. Anyway, LOVED the cleanse and would do another one again.
This was my weight after the cleanse. I was happy. I needed this jumpstart. Again, this is what I needed. I am not saying everyone should do it. I am not telling anybody what they should do. Everyone is different and everyone needs to do what THEY need to do. I don’t judge others and I sure hope like hell nobody judges me. (Okay, I’ll jump off my soapbox now. Lol!)
After my cleanse, it was time to do what I needed to do to get myself back on track. I opened my Weight Watchers app and started using it again. My goodness this felt GREAT! I once again felt like I was in control. I started eating health again. I started tracking everything that was going in my mouth. We found some awesome new recipes and Al was cooking some great meals. I was meal prepping and preparing and it felt amazing!
Nearly two weeks in the New Year and I was feeling good. Finally.
This was my weight taken on Jan. 12. Down two more pounds. YES! I don’t care how slow it comes off, I just want it off. I found a picture of Al and I at the Minnesota Newspaper Association Convention from a few years ago, I think it was either 2014 or 2015. I put the photo on my phone so I can look at it anytime. I felt great in this photo. It is what I am using as my motivation and to help me reach my goal again, which by the way is anywhere between 145-150 pounds. That is when I felt the best. When I felt my happiest. When I had the most energy.
This was my weight Friday, Feb. 2, just before going to the doctor. I am down a total of 10 pounds from when I started and I am good with that. I am happy. I know stepping on the scale isn’t everything, and that it is just a number, but for right now, it’s what I need. I know I will have bad days and I am okay with that. I just don’t want anymore bad weeks, bad months. A day here and there I am perfectly happy with.
One final ramble
Stepping into 2018, I knew I needed to make some changes. I am still grieving the loss of my parents, but for me, it was time to stop wallowing in the grief and start my move to accepting their deaths and it is time for me to push past the grief and not let it consume like it was. I know neither my mom or my dad would want me to continue the downward spiral I was in. I needed to make some changes at home and it started with moving “them” into their own space and out of mine. Sound cruel? I hope not.
My parents are on my mind constantly and there is not a day that goes by where I don’t think of them. But instead of the constant sorrow, pain and grief, I needed and wanted to start feeling happy again. I want to look at pictures and smile instead of cry. I want to look at pictures and remember the happy times and have it make my heart burst with love instead of break with sadness. It was time. Time to move forward.
We have a spare room downstairs that has my dad’s bed and dresser and my mom’s nightstand and jewelry stand in. I decided to make this room “their” room. I set up a “shrine” if you will, in that room, so that when I needed them, I could go in there and be surrounded by their love and presence. It is a great escape and I love it. And, since setting it up Jan. 1, I have visited it a couple of times.
It felt good to do that. I feel good about it. I am finally starting to have more happier days than I am sad days and I knew with time that would happen. I also know that at this time last year is when things started to fall apart. I know in two days my family will celebrate my dad’s birthday without him for the first time and that on March 11, we will celebrate the one-year anniversary of my mom’s death. But I also know that I now have a room that I can visit, escape to and that everything will be okay. It is all going to be okay.