The Morning After

For more than a week, I had no voice.  My husband gave me a slight cold, which tore through our house quite quickly but left me with a severe case of laryngitis.  My voice was nothing more than a squeak for several days, hindering my communication abilities.  This, of course, was agony.  I’m a chatty gal, first off, and I am also an opinionated one, so I have something to say nearly every moment of the day.  The silence was deafening.  I was desperately scared I would be sick for Christmas, struck down by a little bug that most people can recover from easily but wreaks havoc on my weakened immune system.

In the end, it wasn’t the cold that took me down, it was the stomach, of course.

When the ER doc told me he was going to admit me, I was furious.  He left the room, and I stared up at the ceiling, thinking about the dinner I had to cook, the family I was supposed to see, the gifts for my father…no.  Not today, Satan.  I started to cry, and someone heard me.  I never saw his face.  It was dark in my room, and he came in and closed the curtain behind him.  He sat on a stool and asked what was wrong.  I told him it was Christmas, and I didn’t want to be admitted.  I told him I knew my body, and that I was going to be ok, but I felt that the doctor wasn’t listening to me, as so many doctors in my life don’t.  I told him I had food to cook and family to see and that I couldn’t bear to put my mother back in this hospital on Christmas Day.  He said something about my insurance; he wasn’t covered on it, or something, but he promised not to charge me for our talk.  Then he left.  A few minutes later he came back with a discharge sheet.  He told me the risks of me leaving the hospital, and I told him I was well aware.  Then he had me sign the paper, and he left.  I never saw his face.  I never learned his name.

A nurse came in and told me I could leave.  I went home and showered, washing the hospital germs off of me.  I put on my Christmas outfit, and I went to my Gramma’s, where I have been every Christmas Eve of my entire life.  The next day I woke up and exchanged gifts, then made a delicious dinner.  I went to bed at 9:15 and slept for 12 hours.

This morning, I got my voice back.

This wasn’t my best Christmas.  It wasn’t my worst, either, which will likely never be topped.  This Christmas was a little bit of a miracle for me, though.  I had an angel in that hospital.  I had a miracle when I woke up Christmas day and didn’t feel sick.  And it certainly is wonderful to have my voice back.

Last night my Gramma made me promise to relax today, which I will definitely try to do but look, I’m already at the computer.  And my house looks like a Christmas cyclone hit it.  But I will take my time and not worry, because I have done enough stressing and rushing in the past few days.  To be honest, it’s probably what made my stomach act up.  Anxiety is half the battle, always.  Today though, I will take some time and take care of myself, which is something I don’t do very often.  I urge you to do the same, and find a way to recover from the holiday whirlwind.  Maybe it’s over for you…me, I’ve only got a couple days break before another Christmas party and New Year’s.  Still, find a moment for yourself, to count your blessings at this time of year.  We are all blessed somehow.  Recognize it.

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