It started right around Thanksgiving...the sickness did that is. One person after another dropped into the abyss of the ill. Mainly it was the children. One would get something and then get well, and then the next one would get it. And for the most part we stuck to the simple cold. But we also threw in strange symptoms such as my 5 yr. old son throwing up for no reason in the middle of the night, or just not acting himself at all for weeks. (which we found out was due to sinusitis and a double ear infection.) And then it all began to snowball into worse stuff. The kids all ended up with the worst of colds where they felt so miserable and feverish and I felt so bad for them. I made it by until after all the programs our church was putting on for Christmas were over and then I literally crashed. I was so sick I could hardly stand it. That was on a Saturday night. All day Sunday was the worst I had ever felt. Chills and fevers and more besides. By Monday morning I was positive that I had strep throat. It was the Monday before Christmas. I hurried in to the sick clinic and was able to get some medication for the Strep throat AND the ear infection that I had. By Christmas day I wasn't completely healed, was still quite tired, but was much better. But the evening of the 29th I fell sick again. This time with Bronchitis. And, as a lovely addition to it all, so did my husband and my oldest daughter. My husband began with what looked like the flu. I quarantined him off to the bedroom and kept everyone out as much as possible. I kept him well supplied with fluids to drink but despite all of that he ended up quite dehydrated and also had Bronchitis. We were able to get medication for him and he began the verrrry slow road to recovery. He was nauseous for days and so weak. I began to worry that he wasn't ever going to get better!
In the meantime I was laying shivering with chills on the couch and coughing so hard I was pulling muscles. I would get into coughing fits that would literally last an hour and a half. I felt like I was dying. I just couldn't get air through to my lungs. Hannah's experience with the sickness was much less intense- THANKFULLY! And she virtually recovered pretty quick. Amazingly enough, my son and my youngest daughter did not get sick. How?? ONLY by the grace of God.
We were so blessed during this time by loving friends and church members who came and brought food. When the whole family is down, it's hard to get much cooked to eat!
During this time was a cold snap in East Tennessee. Coldest that it's been in....forever?? Water pipes froze, our heating and air unit blades froze and wouldn't turn, so we were left with our woodstove, trying to keep the fire going enough to get the house warm. Finally we got everything thawed out and by this time we were beginning to feel a bit better. I remember one day we went for a little drive and after being gone for only a short while Mike and I both looked at each other and remarked how much just being gone a couple hours had tired us out! We were both ready to get home and crawl into bed!
Thinking that we were finally over all the sickness, (this was several weeks later) We decided to head out of a weekend get-away and enjoy a bit of a delayed holiday fun time together as a family! We reserved a hotel room (making sure it had a pool and a Jacuzzi!) and headed off for the weekend! (we nearly made it to our destination when we were called back to fix a burst pipe on a rental property!! once fixed though we headed back out) We went bowling with the kids, out to eat, driving through the Smoky Mountains, swimming in the pool, soaking in the hot tub, and then the highlight of it all- snow tubing! And then we headed home.... During our weekend, Hannah all of the sudden came down with the worst cough, and Rebecca's nose continued to run (but thankfully nothing worse came of that!) And then we got home and that night I got a lovely reoccurrence of Acute Bronchitis and Acute Sinusitis (as I was later diagnosed.) I coughed and coughed and coughed. I coughed until I majorly pulled and bruised the rib muscles (maybe even breaking one, it was that much pain). Finally I was put on Antibiotics, Steroid, Inhaler and medicated cough syrup. Very very slowly I began to get better. Except for the awful pain in my side. Then I began to feel better, so I decided my living room was such a major mess that I needed to clean it. So I did. Major clean. And I ended up popping some rib cartilage and ended up in bed for the remainder of the week. OH! And get this! I also ended up with the Flu that week. Spent a night in the...... and the next day in bed so nauseous. FINALLY, 5 weeks later I was able to go to church. I was SO thankful!
During this whole saga I learned a lot:
*There are going to be days/moments when you feel like you have reached the end of your ropes. But you haven't. Because God has promised that He won' give you more than you are able to bear. That can be hard to believe, but if we trust this, we will find that it is true. He is always faithful. Faithful through family, faithful through friends. Faithful to the end.
*There are a lot of things you can do with your children while you are laid up in bed! (look for a post with ideas to come soon!) And you can turn a rough situation into a memory making adventure.
*There is a whole lot you COULD be doing, but instead of focusing on that, focus instead on what IS happening, and what you CAN be doing.
*Prioritize. Always Prioritize. Use paper plates!!
*There is ALWAYS something to be thankful for.
*Brighter days are coming. Eventually!
We are finally all doing well. The rib pain in my side is finally easing up, and by adding Iron, B12 vitamins and a few other things my energy levels are beginning to pick up- for which I am glad.
I have been missing on this space of the web for oh so long! It feels good to be back and I have a lot of pictures to post, and ideas to write about. However, I DO have a wonderful family and I always seek to be present in their lives, so.... all this to say that, although I love to blog, it isn't/can't be my life. So, if there are lulls in the posting, you'll know where I am- right where I'm supposed to be. With my family. Present.