The first week of school passed mostly without a hitch until my Thursday. I had a clinical rotation at the hospital. I had to get up by 5 am and be in the car with the Kiddo by 5:45 in order to report for duty at 6:30. I thought it was odd when I popped awake at 4:30 unsure of why but knowing that something was wrong. I gave up on falling asleep and decided to start my day. As I was standing in front of the bathroom mirror, I noticed I was having some very intense hot and cold flashes. You know the kind. One second you are boiling hot and sweating and dizzy, the next second you are freezing cold and shivering. I swung back and forth on this little climate-change coaster several times before I remembered that Kiddo had had a brief and violent episode of stomach flu over the weekend. Normally, I am terrified and popping extra vitamins as soon as I realize she is ill and I may soon become ill. But the hullaballoo of the first week back in class distracted me, I guess, because I found myself completely unprepared. I found myself chanting "no, no, no, NO" over and over as I forced myself to get dressed. But I couldn't get my shoes on because I was so dizzy and nauseous I couldn't see straight. So I called my instructor. I am allowed to miss just 2 clinical days in a school year or risk getting KICKED OUT OF NURSING SCHOOL! I know people, especially in health care, are not supposed to go to work sick, but trust me when I say it is ingrained in every aspect of nursing school that you do not miss class, no matter how sick you think you are, no matter how sick you think your kid is. You get your ass to class or you will find yourself in some high-ranking instructor's office attempting to explain yourself and avoid throwing away years of expensive education.
In my case, the absence was okay because I have not missed a clinical day yet and actually have extra rotations on my roster thanks to the NICU rotations I've taken on (that means begged for). If you think this soothed me at all you are incorrect.
I am a single mother. I know I'm not single, but for all intents and purposes I am doing the child-rearing/nursing school/overloaded schedule coordinating/studying thing ALONE. With Jerry in North Dakota, my "help" is reduced to a sometimes comforting voice on the phone at the end of the day and checks that show up in the bank account. I don't mean to minimize this; my guy rocks and I am so in love with him. We are coming up on 7 years together, and I am so proud of us and the obstacles we've managed to overcome together. Not bad for two stupid kids in their early twenties who thought they were having a "good time" when they first hooked up. But....there is no one to help me solve the day-to-day problems now. There is no one to cover when someone is sick. There is no one to take over the main parenting for a day so I can study for a test. I could write a book on the time management skills I have had to learn in the last 6 months. Like I said, ALONE.
So...the fact that it is the first week back at school and I have already missed a significant day was not helpful. Abscences must be hoarded for extreme emergencies, not piddly little sick days. Plus when I called I wasn't entirely sure that the nausea wouldn't just pass in a few minutes and I'd be mad at myself for wasting an absence on nothing. Usually if you are sick on a class or hospital day it is best to show up anyway so the instructors can see you for themselves and send you home. But I just couldn't make it. So I called in.
Boy, was I glad I called an hour later when I started puking my guts out. It was crazy up in here, ya'll. I was pretty proud of myself for interpreting my body's signals correctly for once because I am usually way off. I would much rather spend the day sick on my own bathroom floor than the employee bathroom at the hospital while trying to juggle patients. Plus, for the first time since I was about 17, I had to call and have my mommy come take care of me. Kiddo was zooming around and needing things and getting very worried about my state of health.
I felt better at night, passed out, and ignored my ringing phone. Woke up to a text message from my dad saying he was "just pulling into town." He had decided the night before to come to town to visit a friend in the hospital and I didn't get the memo. So I had to stagger into the shower and shove crap into cupboards in order to look like a sane person by the time he arrived. I think I pulled it off.
Oh, The Bad Debt List. I did make it last Saturday after I posted. It was ugly. My office is now strategically organized and free from paperwork that is laying around unopened. This is a good thing for finances and studying. I find myself studying in bed or in the living room (where I also fall asleep easily) if the office is a mess. Mr. Ramsey and I have been commuting together this week. I negotiated with the first big bad debt creditor to start making payments and have made two so far, with the goal of paying it off by the beginning of February.
And Jerry and I gave up a trip to visit each other this weekend in the name of better budgeting. That part really sucked. I miss my guy. I so rarely have a spare weekend when school is in session to get over to see him that I badly wanted to take advantage of it, but alas. Here we are.