Monday, 29 March 2010


The year hasn't started out so well for me. Actually the battle with my health has been fought for quite some time.

I had swine flu in the June of last year. Then I was strung my two wasps whilst on holiday in August. In November I fought an upper respiratory infection which left me battling an wicked ear infection and felt like someone was picking sticks in my ear. I seemed to rally in time for Christmas and then came the damp wet grey cold holiday in Spain for the New Year and that just tipped me over the edge.

I was powerless against the pneumonia which left me bound to the house and completely helpless. I had no energy. My temperature soared to over 102 for 12 days solid. I ate nothing for 3 days when my husband finally force fed me toast. A work colleague visited me and I still have no recollection of his visit. I couldn't sleep due to the excessive coughing. I couldn't breath. It felt like a herd of elephants were sitting on my chest.

I took all the drugs and had a reaction to the third course of antibiotics which left me in a worse state than I had been in when I started taking them. I followed all the doctor's orders and still I didn't get better.

I became depressed when nothing seemed to help and I didn't' get better for weeks and weeks. After nearly 5 weeks I began to recover. I returned to work but couldn't manage more than 2 hours. Even during those few hours my brain felt like mush. People would speak to me but I couldn't' for the life of me make sense of what they were saying. And when I did make sense of it I certainly couldn't do any critical analytical thinking about what they were saying. I would come home before midday and collapse into bed.

After a few weeks of this I stated to feel my mojo return. I was making sense of things. I could sustain my attention for more than 10 minutes.

And then I went on a training course and sat in some of the worse chairs ever for 8 hours 3 days in a row with only a few breaks.

I ignored the pain for weeks hoping it would just go away. Finally after 2 weeks, the pain won and seized in the middle of dinner out with my daughter. I made it home through tears with my daughter completely terrified. My husband wasn't home. The doctor couldn't come to the house until after hours. I couldn't sit. I couldn't stand. I couldn't lie down. I couldn't move.

The hospital gave me some serious pain killers and sent me into gagaland which is beautiful place to go. I spent 2 days in a complete fog.

I now have a physiotherapist and am working on the back pain. I don't need the pain killers more than once/day (usually at the end of the day). I have no cough, no cold, no infection. I am not taking any antibiotics.

Health is a funny old thing. You take it for granted when you've got it. And when you don't there is little you can do about it. In the depths of the pneumonia and at the height of the back pain I felt completely powerless. It scared the living daylights out of me.

I know I run at mach 10 with my hair on fire. I have a high stress job. I work full time and have 2 children under the age of 9. I do not have a nanny or an au pair. The only help I have at home is a cleaner who visits for 4 hours once/week (which to be fair is more than some have). My husband is sometimes more of another child than a help (aren't they all?). I do the school run every day. I help with Rainbows. I am a member of the school parent group.

I don't take enough time for myself but I don't know a mother who works outside the home who does. When we are not with our children we feel guilty for working. And when we are with our children we feel guilty for not working.

Now that I am better long may it continue. But I gotta take care of myself. I'm just not sure when I might be able to fit that in........


Louise said...

LD - sounds like you've finally realised that perhaps you're doing more than is humanly possible for one person. You - IMPORTANT, family - IMPORTANT, work - IMPORTANT - everything else can be outsourced. Drop the extra activities (unless they are for yourself like book club) and get someone to do the school run and housework. Problem solved - nobody can do it all - and still be around to boast about it xxxxxx

Anonymous said...

My dear sweet daughter, if you don't take care of you, you aren't going to be able to take care of them...end of lecture..I know I've been there..Love Mom