Sunday, October 31, 2010

P as in . . . pneumonia

On Thursday I started feeling cruddy. I knew I had to be sick because it was cold outside (about 50 degrees) and I felt cold. I never feel cold. Seriously, my husband teases me that we could live in the artic tundra and I would still be a furnace. This was a cold that seeped into my bones and wouldn't leave, regardless of the fact that I was actually wearing a sweatshirt. Very strange.

Then I started getting a sore throat. No big deal. Probably just a cold. I should be fine, besides the annoying fact that I couldn't get warm. I came home and rested, and pretended that my layers of blankets and sweats could keep out the chill.

The next day I felt exhausted. Walking to work hurt my lungs (but I just attributed that to our usual poor air quality), and actually gave me a little stitch in my side. I could hardly think straight. And again, the numbing cold wouldn't leave me alone. I finally decided it was futile to try to accomplish anything of real importance. I had no appetite (as if I could swallow anything anyway). I, thankfully, got a ride home and immediately walked back into my room and crashed. I was finally warm enough. Too warm. Sweating. It was difficult to rest peacefully when my own body couldn't regulate. I was reminded of a time when I was little and my family stayed in a hotel . . . I think in Colorado. I remember sitting with my brothers in the hotel hot tub until we were sweating, and then running and jumping in the big pool. We'd come up for air, gasping against the cold. Something about the shock of temperature change was thrilling, but after doing that a few times, I felt sick. Dizzy.

I had to be at my other job Saturday morning, and I dreaded it. But, I knew that they didn't have anyone to cover me, especially since I'd not come in the night before. I argued with myself that I had gotten plenty of rest the night before, I'd be fine. Still I had no appetite. I could hardly swallow anything more than liquid. I made sure to keep my distance from my patients, wearing gloves and one of those suffocating masks. I broke out in a sweat just walking down the hall, let alone to push a wheelchair back to my office. I felt like a vice was strapped around my lungs, inhibiting how deeply I could breathe. Things did not bode well for me.

I came home and begged Brent to take me to urgent care. I was expecting a diagnosis of strep throat, something easily treatable with antibiotics. The doctor wanted a chest x-ray to rule out pneumonia or bronchitis. Fine with me.

Turns out, it was pneumonia. I feel relieved in a way, to know that I really am sick. There's a reason I can't breathe. I wasn't just making it up. And, it's treatable! I got a fun shot of antibiotics yesterday, and more to last me through the week. I also get an inhaler and a special cough suppressant. I'm glad I didn't wait for my symptoms to get more serious. Now, I just have to rest (easier said than done with a busy toddler in the house who really likes my attention). I hope and pray that my boys don't get this. I can tell the antibiotics are helping - I can breathe a little easier, but I know I'm not over this yet. I'm grateful for those who are helping to take care of me (namely my patient husband).

This little smile works wonders too:

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Soup of the week: Chili

With the change of the season starting (finally!) and the advent of cooler weather, we've decided that we want to start having soup at least once a week. One of those big crockpots full - that you eat all week.

I'm pleased to say that I made my first, completely from scratch, chili yesterday. It had to cook a little longer than I thought it would for the beans to be completely softened (read: 10 hours), but the flavor was good, and it was filling. Hooray for a new experiment! I'm really excited because it was a non-recipe experience. I just made it up as I went (big deal for me - I have a hard time deviating from a recipe card).

I have a few ideas for future soups and stews, but I'd love any ideas. Let me know what your family favorites are!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Makes Me Smile!

Talk about market saturation!