Tuesday, May 18, 2010

the hospital and me...

"Last night I lay in bed looking up at the stars in the sky and I thought to myself, where the heck is the ceiling?"
I'm sure you are all wondering why I started with this quote, right? I really have no idea, it just caught my fancy... and made me laugh. And after the past few weeks, I need to laugh.

Well, maybe there is some correlation to the quote and my title above. It's a stretch but I'll try to explain (eventually).

It's been a few weeks since my stay in the hospital and that time has been spent, well, just trying to survive. While I'm eternally grateful to the hospital and dr's for saving my life (really, really, really grateful!) they beat me up pretty good. The trail of needle marks up and down my arms left bruises that make the strongest stomach squirm. And the drugs they prescribed me? They have wrecked havoc with my sleeping (insomnia anyone?), I've gained way too much weight in a way too short of time (steroids really suck), and my stomach has decided to reject most conventional food (it doesn't seem fair that I gain weight due to the drugs and not to the partaking of all sorts of delectable and delightful treats - it would be nice to blame it on enjoying all the amazing Italian food I want to eat and not those little pills I take each day, but alas my stomach will not allow any Italian at this point). All this to say that, while I am happy to be breathing and living with the rest of you, I'm also tired, beaten up and frustrated with how slow I'm healing. (patience and me? not the best of friends)

I just read that last paragraph and thought "damn girl, stop whining!"  I mean honestly, not too many people can say they have survived the rare and dreaded epiglottitis without having to be intubated or endure a medically induced coma - I'm pretty lucky! But I'll admit it here; I suck at being a sick person. Really suck. I hate it and it's not so fond of me either.And thus the whining. (all done in the most grateful way!)

And what does all this have to do with the quote I mentioned at the beginning of this post? Per the Princess Bride "Let me explain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up." (this is the night for random quotes, isn't it?)

That first night, as I lay in my hospital room, I remember looking around me and feeling completely at peace. It's strange to be saying that, considering I could barely breath and had been through a pretty traumatic experience. Yet there I was, looking out the window, watching the snow fall and feeling awed and grateful for my life. It's similar to the feeling I have when I'm hiking - knowing that the trail could take me to a place that will most likely surprise and challenge me. Whether it's the scenery or wildlife or the accomplishment, it's always a surprise and brings on a feeling of total peace and contentment. And that is exactly how I felt - I had survived all the ups and downs of this crazy 'hike' and was alive and on the way to the 'well' part. And as a result, I was looking out my hospital window in awe of, well, everything.

I wish I could say I have continued on with this peaceful way of being, but sadly no. Life has a way of creeping back in and I easily forget what's important. But I'm working on it.I actually think that should be my life mantra - "I'm working on it" - it's just all too true.

Wouldn't you say life would be pretty boring if we didn't have to "work on it" - being perfect is so overrated. Thank god I don't have to worry about that!