As you read this I am sitting at Rex Hospital overlooking the city watching my mom lay in a hospital bed. By the name of this blog post you must be confused for a moment so let me explain. It turns out that this weekend, and well hell, this blog post, didn’t turn out exactly as planned. I started writing this blog entry on Saturday night. Events unfolded with a single phone call on Sunday morning from my sister saying that there was an emergency. At first I didn’t answer her call because I was busy trying to get out the house to go feed the horses. Dave and I had planned to explore a few properties in neighboring counties just to get out of the house because we were tired of sitting around. I had no idea with a simple phone call my day would change so drastically.
My mom is getting older now and for many years she has experienced a few health problems….her heart being one of them. She takes medication and for the past couple of months she has been hanging in there okay. Right after the Holidays she got the flu and just couldn’t shake it. She started coughing a lot more and we noticed that she started slowing down a bit. My mom has always been a pretty active person so this told us that something might be wrong. After a few days of having chest pains and resting in bed, this morning she woke up with pain in her chest that radiated to her shoulder and back. Since I used to pursue nursing and pretty much everyone in my family has some sort of medical job, I told my sis to immediately take her to the ER. Which of course my mom refused. I have been asking her for the past week to check in with her cardiologist to discuss her discomfort and change in activity level. Which of course she also refused to do. Instead she decided to rest at home which was not a good move if you are having chest pain. Needless to say an emergency room visit ensued this morning. So I am currently in my pajamas parked out in an uncomfortable chair altering this blog post. Heart catheterization and echocardiogram scheduled for first thing in the morning after her enzymes came back elevated and EKG abnormal. I chose to spend the night here with her to keep her mind busy and made sure she rested. Not that I will actually be getting any sleep tonight up here on the heart unit with nurses coming and going all night. The head cardiologist thinks that she either has a blockage or is congestive heart failure. My mom isn’t totally aware of what they are thinking but I think for right now that’s a good thing. The less she knows the less she stresses. The stressing is my job. By forcing her to go to the ER we may have just saved her life. And I am hoping that tomorrow we get some concrete answers as to what is going on. But for tonight I made sure my husband, son, and sis and nephew went home to get some rest. Tomorrow is going to be a long day for everyone and I will need backup once I get too exhausted and give out. I have been under so much stress lately that my anxiety is kicking up my gastroparesis. And I haven’t exactly been eating well. I think this event with my mom has been a wake up call that with all of my autoimmune and stomach issues that I need to take much better care of myself. I have been lazy and complacent. I think once I get in a stable place I will do a juice fast for a few days to get my tummy sorted, start going back to my acupuncturist, and start taking yoga again. You only get a certain number of days on this Earth and none of them are guaranteed. With that being sad, I need to reduce a lot of stress in my life. And as sad as this situation is that’s going on right now, it’s just what I needed to make me realize my wrongs lately. I’ve been so busy surviving that I haven’t been living. And that is no way to go about your life. So on that note……here is my original blog post, “Radio silent”. Enjoy it being so ironic compared to what is going on today. Life is a very funny thing.
So I did it. This weekend I made a concentrated effort to “unplug”. Save this blog post of course. I have come to the conclusion that life is simply better when social media isn’t involved. It seems like everyone is trying so hard to keep up with everyone else. Who can have the best husband, the best kid, the biggest house, the greatest job. It can cause an extreme amount of self doubt about your own life when you read how “great” everyone else’s seems to be. My husband and I have been under an extreme amount of stress. So we are entirely guilty of “checking out” and just grabbing our phones for distraction from the chaos. The end of this past week was a bit brutal. We lost the farm. Or rather, we walked away. After having continuing doubts about the family situation with the heirs that owned the land, and after getting some rather negative news from the soil testing that came back, we knew in our hearts after months of fighting that we just had to give up and walk away. This was something neither one of us wanted to do and we cried many, many tears. Friday we were so depressed after emailing our realtor the grim decision that we literally just laid in bed and cried most of the morning. It felt as if something precious had died. Our dream of having a self sustainable family farm just went up in smoke in a matter of seconds. It was devastating. But once we realized the cost that it would take to amend the soil and build that farm out we knew we had no choice but to pull the plug. Granted we lost the initial investment of the due diligence money which was $1,000. But far better than the close to $300,000 hit we were going to take without even the cost of the house. Add that onto that the cost of the house, horse barn, and equipment barns and we were going to be upwards $1,000,000. That’s a lot of money. And it really got us thinking about what we truly we want in our lives. We’re not young anymore. Hubby is nearly 40 and I am already over the hill. Did we really want to spend our retirement years working our fingers to the bone to get a new farm up and running? Maybe there was a smarter way to go about what we wanted without sacrificing so much time and money. So to rethink our life plan a little, we decided it would be best to unplug and just check out for a little while, even just for a weekend. We put away our phones and decided to concentrate on the most important thing we have going for us…..Us. Our marriage. We have so hastily neglected that in the thick of all of this mess. I figured enough was enough. We needed to get out of our heads a little bit and regroup. So we packed up a picnic lunch and headed to my favorite thinking spot, Shelley Lake. We sat in the grass with our butts on the ground with no phones, no social media, no distractions. And for the first time in what felt like months, we were actually able to have a real conversation about what we truly wanted to do with the rest of our lives and how we wanted to live it. We both acknowledged that we had a bit of a social media problem and that sometimes this distracted us from spending quality time with one another and really appreciating the other person. You get so used to the noise, the distractions in life that it can get really easy to tune everything out, even the important stuff. I stopped watching the news about 5 years ago. I found it too depressing and I found that most of the information was subjective at best. If I needed to know what was going on in world events, I tuned in to the BBC on the radio. I started watching more PBS. I found a great love for documentaries. And while I would love to say I started reading more, I did not. I love to read, always have, I just found that I had “no time for it”. The truth was, I had plenty of time. And instead of becoming addicted to trashy tv shows, I should have had my nose buried in a book. Alas, I often let the world around me influence my opinion. Something we are all guilty of doing in today’s age. It made me wonder how relationships from previous time eras were more successful. When there was no real cable tv or Smartphones and you didn’t go on dates at Starbucks. I want to be fully present when my husband or son speaks to me. I want to cut out the distractions that prevent me from being the best wife and mother that I can be. My husband agreed. We both needed to check into our situation a little bit more and check out of everybody else’s. We decided sitting right there in the sunshine with the wet grass soaking through our shorts and the birds singing in the trees overhead that we would practice unplugging. Just going radio silent for periods of time and work more on our relationship and our family. I can honestly say that Friday was one of the best days we have had in months. We walked around the lake, talked about different things, then went to Total Wine and got a new bottle of wine to try. We came home and cooked dinner together, the husband manning the grill while I held down the stove end of things. Granted we drank entirely too much wine (it was so good though!) but we ended up just listening to St. Patrick’s day music on Pandora, talking, and enjoying the simple fact of just being with each other. And that’s what’s really important after all.
What a funny thing to read after today’s events. Seems like the Universe is trying to tell me something after all. I guess with all of the stress I wasn’t paying attention to the things that mattered most.
I think it’s time to change my life up a little bit. And do things a bit different to increase the quality of it.
With that being said……Party on my friends. Tomorrow is another day.