To My Knees

Nothing brings a singular focus to your life like illness.   It trumps everything else.  I’ve spent the last 6+ days getting my ass handed to me by the flu.  It wasn’t as bad as it could be - I wasn’t hospitalized, but everything hurt.  My body was incredibly sensitive to touch, temperature and sound.  Nothing else mattered to me except feeling better - in any way possible. 

I don’t think I’ve ever had the flu best me in such a vicious way.  Really.  Three days was formerly my max and I went to work on the third day.   Nope, this time my body had been ravaged like the first Thanksgiving.

I realized a few things as I lay in bed, fighting for a comfortable position within my body:

I could actually rely on my baby sister to take care of me. We were visiting family in Seattle.  On the second full day of our visit, I dropped like a sack of rocks.  I was in bed from Saturday, until Tuesday afternoon, only because we had a flight home to catch. For days, my sister propped me up with drugs, tea, water and Jamba Juice.  She bought a thermometer and took my temperature.  She made me eat.  She plied me with loving looks and a warm hand on my forehead. Physically, I was a mess, but she nourished my soul (and got herself sick in the process).  It wasn’t that I didn’t already know that she was a caregiver, I did.  She took care of our Nana during those last, painful years.  I just didn’t know that she was going to have to take care of me.  

Thank you Leslye.  I love you.
Any of the remaining shit I continue to fret about is unimportant. When I was intermittently conscious, I had some time to think.  I couldn’t even read - it hurt my eyes.  Illness was my entire world, to the exclusion of everything else.  When you're sick, it's quite a simple process to figure out what's important and what isn't.  I did have the fleeting thought that if this is the way I was going to die, then that would be shitty.  Know why?  Because I’ve wasted a lot of fucking time while I was healthy not doing what the shit I was supposed to.  I'd spent lots of time watching TV.  Plenty of time shooting the shit. More time than I'd care to admit thinking instead of doing.  It was terrifying.  I was sorry - for all the time I’d wasted while I was healthy - doing nothing but bullshit.  Fretting about crap. Being too much in my head. Being lazy.  
Besides my immortal soul, good health is the most valuable thing I possess. I’ve always been healthy.  My body has always felt like it’s been on my side. I got pregnant and although I had five months of morning sickness, I only had four hours of labor.  I only gained 30 pounds and three weeks after giving birth I could fit back in my pre-pregnancy jeans.  My body has been my great friend. I cannot say the same. Not enough sleep.  Not enough water.  Shitty food.  No exercise for years on end.  Smoking (!).  My body is still trying to be here for me.  Now it's my turn to be here for it, after all we are in this thing together.  
More to come.  This is just the beginning.