There is an alternative title to this post…I almost called it “Taking One for the Team”, which would be equally meaningful and true.
Early Friday morning around 4am, out of the complete blue, I woke up feeling like absolute crap—you’ve all been there, I’m sure of it. You’ll recall the nausea, the aches and pain, the impending doom of knowing relief is going to have to come in the form of two outcomes, neither of which are appealing or lovely or mentionable. The flu. It sucks. This year in the fall I got a free flu shot because of my auto-immune disorder. I had never had one before but I figured I would get it since it was free and also just to see if it would work. 3 days after I got that shot I got the worst flu EVER. But everyone told me that was normal; it was just the flu shot building some kind of immunity, so I rolled with it. This time though? This time I was pissed right off. And in denial of some sort, because I think I put too much faith in that silly little vaccine. It’s not magic, people. I learned this the hard way.
Anyways, stubborn girl that I am, I went to work, worked for 2 hours, threw up at work, and went home. Tried to sleep, couldn’t sleep, visited the restroom, shivered, sweated, visited the restroom, tossed, turned, visited the restroom, repeat all of the above.
And then? And then I cried. Hard.
There are perks to my pretty little historical country cottage…I love that place. I love my solitude. But when I am sick? When I am sick I don’t love isolation.
My phone broke on Wednesday night and I haven’t been able to use it since, and my internet has been down since the beginning of January, so I started to worry a little when I took my temperature and found it was 102.6 and climbing slowly.
And that’s when I cried, when I realized I had no way of getting in touch with anyone…not that I wanted an audience or anything, but isn’t it nice to know that your Mama’s cool touch to your forehead is only a whimper away? Isn’t it nice to know that someone, anyone, is in the next room when you feel like you are dying a slow death? (I’m dramatic and I know it)
During my big cry in bed that afternoon I decided to pray that someone would come to me…I felt so alone and even though I know I’m never really alone, I still really wanted someone to come to me. And you know what? Someone did.
I had just drifted off to sleep when I heard my screen door open, and there, like magic, was Thelma and her husband Hutch (obviously those are just fun names). They were “in the neighbourhood” and decided to come check on me, even though it was almost 10pm and even though they live in Chilliwack. I am a lucky girl.
Even though I really didn’t want to go and even though we knew I probably just had the flu, Thelma took me to the hospital because I hadn’t had a thing to eat or drink in more than 24 hours, and also since I had that ulcer around Christmas that never really got taken care of.
And Thelma REALLY truly took one for the team, you guys. She was my voice and my pillow and my sister and mother and friend all wrapped into one. She took me on, germs and all. It’s amazing how quickly you realize you have allowed someone into your life for real when they can recite facts about you and your medical history and your life to a complete stranger without even having to get confirmation from you. I am blessed to have friends such as these. Truly blessed.
As yet another doctor was asking us questions, Thelma brought up the bulimia…she was so gentle and tactful and my heart almost burst when she protectively put her hand on me and said boldly, “But I know her. And I know this isn’t about her wanting to throw up”.
Those three little words, “I know her”…they mean everything to me.
My dad is in town and I saw him yesterday and it was really good. But sadly some people thought that I was avoiding him by making myself sick, which is the exact reason I didn’t mention on facebook that I was even in the hospital. It makes me sad to know that my dad’s feelings were hurt by that. Getting the flu is no one’s idea of a good time, so it’s crazy that someone would translate that into “she was avoiding something potentially awkward”. I could have made up something better than a visit to the ER.
Anyways, it doesn’t matter now. I’m feeling better and I saw my dad, which I will write about later this week.
Shout out to Thelma (also known in the real world as Nikki) for letting a raggedy sickie lean on you. And for giving me many reasons to giggle that night, even at 2:30am in a cold and scary place.
My thoughts and prayers go out to all who are sick right now, which I know is a lot of you…we need to fight through the rest of this stupid cold and flu season!
Stay warm and drink lots of water, friends 🙂 And as always, know you are loved!