Thursday, October 28, 2010

Coming Out of Hiding

Kelly and the girls at the Northeast Florida Fair in Callahan...Yee Haw!
Well hello there, little blog. Yes, I realize it’s been nearly three weeks since I popped in on all you wonderful friends out there in blog land. This try-to-do-it-all superwoman has had a very difficult month, so I’m breaking one of my personal blogging rules today: don’t blog when you are not in a happy place (my blog, my rules; your blog, your rules). I’m not in a happy place not because I’m not happy (and you’ll soon learn I’m also heavily medicated so I might not make total sense right now), I’m just in a sick as a dog place. September, October and November are always my busiest months at work, and they are compounded by my love of Florida State football and two-three large juried arts festivals. This Fall, I’ve actually tried to cut back some…just two shows (St Simons Oct 9-10 and Halifax Nov 6-7) and just three games, only one of which I’ve made it to so far and took the girls with me…but I’ve had more and more put on my shoulders at work, so the cutting back just didn’t seem to work. This week, I have been sicker than I can remember being in quite some time. Today is my fourth day out of work. The last time I was out of work due to illness for four days straight was when I was on maternity leave with the girls seven years ago.

Saturday, I took the girls to the fair with a friend and her daughter, and that’s where I believe Olivia and I picked up the intestinal virus from hell. We both started feeling poorly Sunday and by Sunday night were running high fevers. Suffice it say things got worse from there and we spent all day Monday and Tuesday either in bed or in the bathroom. Livvie’s started clearing up Tuesday afternoon, and she was actually able to go back to school yesterday. But mine showed no signs of letting go and I was also becoming very congested and developing a very bad cough. I finally broke down and went to the doctor yesterday; I must admit I was honestly afraid to be away from the bathroom for the 30 minutes it takes to get to my doctor’s office. He diagnosed me with a severe intestinal virus (duh!) and a severe sinus infection….two totally unrelated illnesses that just happened to attack me at the same time. He put me on an anti-viral and a Z-pack and sent me home to drink lots more fluids and go back to bed. I’ve lost seven pounds since Sunday. Luckily, so far Sarah and DH have shown no signs of either illness. Hopefully that won’t change!

Yes, I know that’s my body speaking to me…telling me that I’m overdoing it. Yet you know what? I look back at the past two months, and there’s unfortunately very little I could have done differently. (This is the same issue I have with the whole “you make time for what’s important” line of thinking I so often hear…frankly sometimes there is simply just not enough time in the day). I cut things out this Fall.  I made a conscious decision to cut out one show and chose a show close to home for October so I could sleep in my own bed; I chose not go to any September games, so I had no travel in September; and I told my guitar teacher that I’d have to forego my lessons the entire month of October, but none of that helped. It was my work schedule that put me over the top, and that, unfortunately, short of quitting my job, is out of my hands. And this week was a big one, with our biggest Fall term event plus two screenings of a national film we’d been planning for months plus a very important college-wide training for which I am one of the process leaders. And nope, the world did not come crashing down because I wasn't there (at least as far as I know…I’m not at work after all, but I haven’t gotten any “the world has come crashing down” emails from my assistant, God bless her).

My point in all this? Not sure, but I’ll give it a shot. First, to the moms out there who are in the same boat as I am, working a very demanding full-time job while also trying to raise your wonderful children and work on your creativity, whether it’s a business or a hobby, listen to your body when it starts telling you that you need a break, and take it. You deserve it, and you need it.  And while you’re at it, listen to your heart when it’s trying to tell you that maybe you need a change, and see what you can do about that too. I’ve been working on that part, but I haven’t come up with a workable option yet. It makes me sad to think that I may have to give up some of the things l love (like my art or music) because my job can be so draining.

And for the moms who live very different lives from me, who work from home or whose creativity is their work, and have time at home with your children…even when you may feel like pulling your hair out because your toddler has smeared spaghetti sauce all over your kitchen cabinets (or your couch), revel in the idea that you have the freedom to be there for that, that you are not in that 8-to-6-plus grind, that you are there for all those little moments working moms miss. It may not seem like the cat’s meow to you, but sister, I know many a working mom out here who would love to lick out of that bowl.

For me? Something’s gotta give. Not sure what that’s going to be yet, but I’ll keep working on it. Right now though, I think I’ll go drink some more Gatorade and go back to bed. Hope you are feeling well!

12 comments:

Martha Lever said...

Oh, Kelly, I am so sorry for you. I know you must just feel terrible. Just one of those dreaded illnesses are enough but both at once! The z-pack should help with the sinus but unfortunately the virus thing has to run its course. I will be thinking of you and please let us know when you are feeling better.I know that change is hard. Hang in there and I hope you will be better and back on your feet tomorrow!

cath c said...

your viruses sound horrible - please take care of yourself and get well. sounds like you are doing the right thing for now.

i have been on both sides, and i do appreciate that i have the time to spend with my kids for the time being. there are plusses and minuses on both sides of the working vs sahm question, but seeing the little things is a big plus on the sahm side.

Gwynnie B said...

You have been missed, dahling, and so sorry to hear it's due to the yuckies. There's so much to do, to experience, to absorb, and pesky things like germs just get in the way when our bodies are in over-drive!

Sending lots of silly, colorful, loving, healing vibes your way, Kelly!!!

lori vliegen said...

i hope you feel the really really big hug i'm sending to you right now (can you feel it?!!). listening to your body and listening to your heart are tricky things......you'll discover what's right for you and your sweet family. in the meantime, keep drinking gatorade and get lots of rest, girlie!!! hope you're feeling better really soon!! xoxox, :))

Brittany said...

So sooo sorry to hear you've been sick! Sounds horrible. Also sorry to hear that you're not in your happy place right now. Hoping things get better soon.

Speaking from experience, (remember the lingering 8 week stomach bug at our house last year?) you might need to take double/trple doses of probiotics and completely avoid dairy and sugar to get over the hump. That's what finally worked for us. Stomach bugs are the pits. :-(

julie king said...

kelly, i think you just need to give yourself permission to be less than superwoman -- at least once in a while. :) as women and mothers, we put so much pressure on ourselves to do it all and be it all and have it all and looking back i sometimes wonder what i missed out on in the process. wishing you a quick recovery and wings to get you flying again soon!

Becca said...

So sorry to hear you are feeling down Kelly, I do hope you are on the road to recovery! Take care. Becca

aimee said...

aw, sweets, your body just said "enough". thank goodness you listened, and thank goodness for z-packs. no more fairs for you for a while, OK?? xo

ELLIE said...

I hope and pray that you start feeling so much better very soon - my daughter had the same thing - lasted a week for her - the same thing is going around her college--keeping my fingers crossed that it stays away from me!!!
GET SOME REST girlfriend....take care of you first...

Karen Faulkner said...

Feel better soon Kelly!

Roben-Marie said...

Hope you get back to your "Happy" self soon!! Great photo!! :)

Flaming Nora said...

just stopped over to check out who you are as it would appear we have been paired up in the post card swap. Think it must be someone telling us something. I hear you loud and clear! This last month has been one of the worst I have had in a very long while. I've cut back on every thing non essential, and still there isn't enough time, so I start cutting back on family time. Then the kids are revolting because they never see me, then I snap at them because I'm tired, then they act up and so it continues. If I hear another stay at home mum friend tell me How tired she is when I've worked every day for 14 days and most evenings and nights too, I think I will loose my composure compleatly. I don hope you are feeling better soon and remember this time of year doesn't last forever!