My Journey Through Last Year
It’s been a while since I have posted. And there was a time when I thought I might just pull my blog down from the internet as I didn’t have time to maintain or write on it anymore. Last year was a whirlwind of events. The year started off well. I was beginning to feeling better with my thyroid related issues, had energy, treated my adrenals, and started to feel like a human again. Then a hurricane of events brought me to my knees.
We had hail damage, tornadoes, high winds. The storm snapped a tree in our backyard in half landing it on our back porch and house. It damaged our porch but luckily didn’t damage the structure of our house. The insurance wasn’t going to cover all of the expense of our porch so we opted to build it ourselves and I must add, we did a great job! It looks better than the pre-existing porch. Thank you YouTube, and my husband’s dedication to researching how to properly build it!
Vacation, Family, and Just Being Busy
Shortly after (I think it was maybe a week or 2) the construction workers re-roofed our house, we built our porch, and we were headed for some much needed vacation. Then 2 weeks (I think) later family came in. Then many more visitors, events, and just being busy . I don’t remember every visitor, event but it seemed as if every week, we had something going on. Before I knew it, my dreamed summer vacation was gone. It was time to start planning for homeschool.
This one was a kicker that seemed to make everything spiral out of control. My husband’s employer “volun-told” him, (I’m stealing this word from my hubby,) that he would be going on a grand adventure for a few months. He had 2 choices; go or lose his job. He had already missed multiple layoffs so he sucked it up and went.
Although they told him he would be going, they never gave a time or date, until 12 hours before the departure. No, I am not joking. At that point, homeschooling would start in about 2 weeks. We had not even decided if the girls and I would be tagging along with him. But 12 hours later, all laundry washed, everyone packed up, we were in the car driving to OKC. I told myself it would be okay. It would be in our past before long. It could even be fun!
It wasn’t until the time we left that we even knew which hotel was booked or where we were staying. For a perfectionist,planner like me, this was bonkers. This is when the real fun began. The company wouldn’t pay for the hotel on the weekend unless he was working on a Saturday. Most weekends, we drove 6.5 hours home. On Monday, we were making the drive back. The hotel and food was covered. A company car and gas for the company car was provided but the insurance didn’t cover me or my girls therefore we couldn’t ride in the vehicle. I hate driving so my husband drove our own vehicle and paid our own gas.
And while my husband had a daily allowance for food, it wasn’t as grand as everyone would think. It was exactly as it sounded. He had a daily allowance. His boss would not allow him to get a week’s worth of groceries. We had to go to the grocery store, or out to eat each and every single day. Since the 2nd hotel served free supper Monday through Thursday, we would eat and then head to the grocery store every…single…day. Sometimes getting snacks, getting food for lunch, stocking up on goods for home, or when we got tired of the hotel food. It sounds great in theory but we got sick and tired of going to grocery store every day.
Most would say well why didn’t you just stay home with your girls? We have been through a deployment and we know how tough it is to be apart. Others told us, “Oh how nice, it would be a paid vacation.” Let me tell you, this was far from any ideal vacation I have taken. It was a nightmare. I’ll put things into perspective. Imagine, driving 13 hours every weekend. Being home long enough to unpack, rewash your clothes, repack everything to live in a 1 bedroom hotel room for 2.5 months.
They had problems booking our room in the hotel so it was a constant, “Which hotel are we staying in?” for 3 weeks. Finally, we were booked in the hotel room with the rest of the guys who were volun-told. We thought, “When we finally get in the other hotel, it will make it easier.” The 1st hotel amenities didn’t seem as glorious as the 2nd hotel. The 2nd hotel had a kitchenette, apartment size fridge, 3 working washers and dryers (the 1st hotel room had 1 washer and a dryer that was out of service), Monday-Wednesday free supper and a courtyard.
Sounds great right? Nope, it got worse. The room was smaller, had 1 queen size bed and a pull out couch. The 1st hotel had 2 queen size beds and while it lacked the other amenities, it had a separate sitting area.
To top it all off, the hotel staff at the 2nd hotel hated us from day 1. I’m not joking when I say this. We arrived before the other guys and we were told they check in wasn’t until 12PM. We waited around until 11:45 and tried to check in. The manager tells us, the room isn’t ready. Check in is at 12PM. So we waited in the car until 11:51. Seriously 9 minutes before and she still would not let us check in. It wasn’t until 11:57 PM, when the woman, who also happens to be the manager, was a little gracious and let us check in 3 minutes “early.”
Oh and I must add, the other guys checked in as soon as they arrived. One of them literally checked in 15 minutes after our first attempt. My head wanted to explode. Trying to stay positive, we thought, “well, next week will be better…” It was just because this was our first time staying there. Finally, they began to allow us to check in when everyone else did. But the issues didn’t end there.
So the courtyard also had 3 basketballs out when all the employees were there. One of the times, I took my girls down to the courtyard to play their energy out. There was one ball out there. One of the nicer staff members told my daughter, I will go get you another ball. Ok cool. My girls won’t fight over the ball. Maybe things were looking up. I’m just stressed and think they hate us. HA HA HA!
At the beginning most of the balls were just left out. But then they were missing one day. No big deal. I told my daughter to go ask for 2 balls. She comes back with 1 basketball. I thought you went in for 2 balls? She tells me, ” The woman said they only had 1 ball.” I set there for a second and the more I sit there, the more furious I get. I ask, “Which lady was it?” It was the same woman. I calm myself and tell myself, “don’t get blow your fuse.” Be Christ-like and be kind. I go in there and ask politely for another ball. She tells me with an attitude, “We only have 1 ball.”
My temper rises but I keep my cool. “There has been 3 balls out there every day.” Point blank she tells me, “We only have 1 ball.” I retell her about how one the other hotel staff gave us another ball when there was one already out there. She asks me if I want to come look back in the office. I tell her no but now I am confused. She haughtily goes back to the room behind the desk and keeps saying they only have 1 ball. As she starts rolling, I say rolling, it was more like chunking the balls with much emphasis toward the front desk. She picks up one that is flat and kind waves it in front of me.
At this point, I’m ready to come over that desk, but I keep telling myself, “Be Christ-like.” Like a mantra. After this, she regathers herself or maybe because another customer walked up behind me that she seemed chummy with, she places the balls on the desk and says they do not belong to the hotel. Then she kindly tells me I can take one though.
I’m in shock from what at what had just unfolded and seeing 3 balls, it might have been 4 with the flat one, so I ask, “Are you sure?” She replies calmly, “Yeah sure. It’s fine.” I hesitantly take the ball, tell her thank you, and go back to the courtyard. From this point on, I avoid her like the plague. It went smoother once I avoided her but I felt like an unwelcome guest from this point on.
The Kindness of an 8 Year Old
I must take the time to brag on my daughter. After this incident, my daughter had to ask for a ball again another day. I told her, just ask for 1. Ya’ll will have to share. I didn’t want any more trouble and just didn’t have the energy to fight it. She goes in there and it’s the manager. My daughter tells her with sincerity, “You look very pretty today.”
As parents, we think we are the teachers. But that day, my daughter taught me, no matter how ugly someone can be, you can always return goodness to those who have not been so kind. I was overwhelming proud of my daughter’s kindness. I had every intention on reporting this manager after it was all said and done. But after seeing my daughter’s good heart, I decided I wouldn’t. I would try my best to show her kindness when I really didn’t want to.
Business Trip Coming To An End
Towards the end of the business trip, I got sick. And was flat out tired. I stayed behind for 2 weeks. My husband begged me to come with him for the last week. Like I said above, we have been through a deployment and we realize how precious time is together. After a long and bumpy road, OKC was finally in our rear-view mirror. Things had to be looking up from here…right?
Birthdays and Holidays
Completely exhausted from all our travels, the stress of my husband being on a new product line, birthdays, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas were up next. My husband was working 6 days a week, 12 hours a day. By the time Thanksgiving hit, I started experiencing anxiety. I knew something was off so I went for blood work.
Anxiety, Adrenals, and Thyroid
My Rt3 was high, ft3 was declining, my iron labs were off, and I had anxiety. I had never experienced anxiety. I began working on my thyroid. I pushed through and felt like I had overcome the anxiety. Now it was Christmas. I ordered every gift online because I knew I couldn’t handle the busyness of crowds. And I honestly just didn’t feel the holiday spirit.
Then I was asked to take on a big role. My sister in law had been having lots of health issues. She was going to be going to a holistic facility for a month or 2. My brother had to work and they homeschooled my niece. He asked me to watch her during this time. As the time approached, I would feel worry and anxiety slip in but I would push it aside. I would be okay. It would be fine. No big deal.
When he brought her down, it finally sunk in. And the anxiety hit me like a freight train. A freight train where I had somehow missed the tracks and now was being blinded by the light. A month later and I am still coping with the anxiety. I never knew how much of a burden anxiety could be. I called my sister sobbing, she told me she would be there in a minute to pick up my niece and take on the job I said I could do. My brother was furious and I couldn’t even bring myself to talk to him. I felt so ashamed. I desperately wanted to help, to do this favor for him, but I couldn’t seem to make myself snap out of this hole I had fallen in.
That brings me to today. A month later, I am still coping with anxiety. And while I am not ready to share the details of the dark place anxiety brought me to, maybe in the future I can bring myself to share and let my walls down. I’m slowly getting better but the wound is still sore.
In the meantime, I am still working on my thyroid. I’ve had more blood work done. I discovered, I have the MTHFR gene mutation, excess rt3 more than likely caused by adrenals, high copper. I’m waiting on my adrenals test to come back. And sex hormones are next on my list. I hope someday I can be there for someone who is also going through a tough time.
I wanted to take some time to show my thanks for all my loved ones who have seen me during one of my darkest times and been there for me to lean on. My husband, my rock, who has been more than understanding and taken up the slack for me when I couldn’t even take care of myself.
My sister, who took on the role of taking on a responsibility that was to be my own.
My mother, despite her ongoing health issues has checked in on me, stayed with me, and listened.
Robin, who I didn’t know very well but reached out to me and also saw me in my lowest, listened and understood.
My children, who have tried to help mommy out in any way they could. This is my support group that I have leaned on so heavily.
They comforted me, understood, listened, shared their own struggles with anxiety and loved me. To to the Lord, through all my doubting, faith testing, you were always right there with me. You never left me. I could never thank “all ya’ll” enough.
As I close this post, I didn’t realize how tough it would be to revisit last year. I didn’t expect the emotions I felt through every single one of these struggles to come back up. I didn’t know how mentally exhausting it would be….. This entry was supposed to be more encouraging. Instead, it has journeyed through my emotions, experience, and past. Anyone who knows me, knows that I have a hard time revealing my flaws, my weakness, my hurt, and opening up. I suppose this journey is just one more footstep towards my healing. And while it has been hard to believe I will be okay again, I will get through this, I have to believe that I. Will. Be. Okay.