Monday, October 6, 2008

Heading the Call


Early Friday afternoon I was hit with a huge wake-up call after taking a dose of Sudafed to battle a headache I’d been suffering with for almost three days. I took the Sudafed, rested on the couch in a back room of our offices for about a half hour when I decided I should put something on my stomach. On the way back from grabbing some soup, my heart started to race, my head continued to pound, my hands and feet began to tingle and the world started to spin around me. The next thing I knew, I was stretched out on the ground with my boss demanding that I stay awake.

When the EMT guys arrived they took my blood pressure and it was through the roof. Despite my protests, I was soon in an ambulance and on my way to the hospital. By the time we arrived at the hospital, my blood pressure started to come down and the EMT guys suspected the Ephedrine in the Sudafed might be the culprit of all this drama, but when probed a bit deeper, it became glaringly apparent that the last few weeks have been much more hectic than usual and maybe the Ephedrine acted as a catalyst for a good old-fashioned anxiety attack.

What?!?!?! Me, Mango Mama, not able to handle (with grace and ease) all being thrown my way? Say it ain’t so. Sure, trying to juggle Loverman’s new work and travel schedule, three nights of soccer practice for the brown babies, with two games on Saturdays, weekends of work-related performances or workshops may seem like a lot for mere mortals, but not me--- no way! Not true. In fact, I sensed things getting a bit out of control when Loverman announced he had to head out to L.A. about two weeks ago. He would only be gone for the weekend, but it was the same weekend when I would be tied up working with an artist with press appearances and performances. My mind raced as I tried to figure out how I could meet both my work and familial responsibilities. I finally decided to reach out and get some help. I was able to hire a young lady who works as a babysitter for a good family friend to come in to stay with us for the entire weekend and work as a mother’s helper.

In spite of my careful planning and logistics management, Friday afternoon I still found myself flat on my back in the emergency room. I couldn’t believe it and I couldn’t slow my brain down enough to understand how serious this situation could get if I don’t make some changes. As I watched the meditative drip of the I.V., I fretted over who was going to pick the kids up from school, especially since Loverman was in the air on his way to Los Angeles, and never for a minute did I consider rescheduling the press appearances for the artist I was working with, but what took me over the edge while I lay there was hearing the emergency room nurses commenting on how Sarah Palin touched them the night before during the vice presidential debate. I couldn’t believe it! These broads went on and on about she was speaking “their” language and seemed really down to earth. One went on to say, “She couldn’t do much worse than what we currently have, and what do we really know about Barack Obama?” By this point my heart was about to jump out of my chest and I knew I had to get out of there if I was going to get my anxiety under control. I called for a nurse and explained that I was feeling loads better and needed to be on my way because I had to get my kids by 3:30pm. A few minutes later, after the attending physician looked me over, I was out the door, right on time to meet the rest of my responsibilities for the evening and the weekend.

Now that this weekend is finally behind me and other than the little side-trip to the emergency room, all went off without a hitch, but that’s not the moral of this story. The moral is that I have more going on than I can handle by my lonesome and in addition to asking for help, I need to make time to take care of myself. I haven’t had a bit of exercise since the pool closed on Labor Day. I haven’t had a day off since Sunday, September 21 and I won’t until this coming Sunday, October 12. I’ve gotten up every morning for the last three weeks at 6:30am and sometimes I don’t get to bed until 11:00pm. My mind is constantly racing and instead of being present in the moment, I’m thinking about what needs to get done next. This can’t be healthy.

But, I’m overwhelmed simply thinking about how to make some obviously needed changes. I don’t think I can get up any earlier to take a much-needed walk. I’m hoping things will slow down once soccer season is over, but I can’t seem to get my head around some me-time. So, if I’m going to be completely honest with myself, at this point I’ve only heard the wake-up call, but how I’m going to address this call is still a complete mystery to me.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Just say "no". I have found it to be very helpful,as a single parent & charter member of the sandwich generation. Of course there are some things that we can't say "no" to, but the times we can say it with grace and dignity are lifesaving. You don't have to go to every hog killin'! I have also taught my son the pleasure of pajama day... days when we don't leave the house or take off our pj's are rare, but they are priceless. We read, watch movies together (or alone), eat foods we love and just breathe without any disturbance from the forces of the ripping and running that we live during the week. Try it!

Mango Mama said...

You know, I know you're right, but this is really hard for me. I am actively working on de-cluttering my life. I will also work on saying NO.

Barb said...

Breathe. Just breathe. Stay in the moment. And breathe. There is nothing that will come from imagining what your life should be like in some distant future or what you could have done differently to prevent or change something in your past. Staying in this moment...in this NOW. That's all you got. So breathe. Breathe this moment. Sending you love!

Olivia said...

Hey mama! So good to hear from you. I will definitely work on the breathing. Hope all is well on your end. Love to you too.