2018 is Off to a Rough Beginning

Dear Friends,

I wonder if the phrase “in like a lion, out like a lamb” applies only to March, or if it might be dispersed across an entire year.

The first 10 days passed smoothly enough and it seemed the transition from 2017 into 2018 was a seamless one. I don’t tend to believe that life gets an abrupt new beginning on January 1st of each year. It’s just a date, a way of marking the passing of time, after all. But now I find myself beginning to wonder if 2018 might be a cursed year for me. At any rate, the last week has certainly been vexing.

Over the course of the last seven days, everything has turned to chaos. It began with the boys’ bikes being stolen right out of our carport in the middle of the night. Nothing else was stolen; nothing of mine; only my boys were victims. I was angry, more at them losing something they loved than at the loss of my money spent on the bikes. At any rate, I bought a new bike chain with a combination lock so that I can ensure the replacement bikes I buy will not meet a similar fate.

That same night, we received our first winter weather of 2018 in the form of freezing rain, topped with sleet. The next morning I found myself trapped because I drive a front wheel drive soda can for a car and live up a mountain. Okay, just a really steep driveway…but when it’s covered in ice it may just as well be a mountain.

I got mad at the driveway, spent a couple of hours chiseling ice, and made a bee-line for St Louis to shop for a Subaru the moment I was able to get my car out without sliding through my neighbor’s living room window. This trip led me to the discovery that Southeast Health decided to bill me for x-rays from four…yes, four…years ago, and turned it over to collections because they typed my address into their system incorrectly so I never received a bill. Nor did I ever receive a phone call, from them or the debt collection agency, despite them having my correct phone number on file.

I only discovered this bill existed because it showed up in my credit report when the dealership ran credit, and it had tanked my credit score. I had to call the hospital to pay the bill and make sure they removed it from collections since it was, as seems to be par for the course with this hospital, their error that led to the bill being reported to collections in the first place.

In the midst of this, the boys came home from their dad’s for the weekend, and Hunter brought home with him the stomach bug that he had picked up from his dad and sister. While Logan and I were battling (still) the driveway, now coated wtih freshly fallen snow, Hunter was quarantined to his room and I spent the next two days scrubbing my hands and repeatedly sanitizing every hard surface in the house. Thankfully we were off on Monday for Martin Luther King Day, but I also had to miss work for Hunter’s illness on Tuesday.

Yesterday morning Hunter was ready to go back to school and I was headed back to work. We left the house at 7:15 per usual, only to find a dead car battery. My first thought was getting the kids to school. I called my friend Ashley, who is also Logan’s teacher, to pick up the boys and take them to school. Then, I called my coworker Josh to come give me a jump. A few failed attempts later I ended up just hitching a ride, as my car battery was beyond the point of resurrection.

I called Dad, who came down after work and took me to buy a battery. It was a quick swap, and my car was back in business. Finally, I could relax. Or so I thought.

Last night, at 3:00 a.m. almost on the nose, I was awakened by the sound of coughing. I realized quickly that it wasn’t coughing, but vomiting that I was hearing. I got up and went to the bathroom, only to find it empty. Was I hearing things? I went back to bed, then heard it again. I jumped up and opened my door, to discover that it was coming from Logan’s room. Oh, no. That means he’s also caught the stomach virus, and thrown up all over himself.

I stripped his bed and took the sheets down to the wash, and put new sheets and a blanket on his bed. I set up the bathroom trash can next to his bed, then went back to bed myself. But there was no sleeping, because over the course of the next three hours he threw up at least another half dozen times. For the sake of sparing him embarrassment, all I will add to this is that I again had to strip his bed and ended up throwing a sheet into the dumpster rather than try to clean it.

Neither of us got any further sleep last night, and today was spent once again manically cleaning and sanitizing every surface in the house he could have touched, or I could have touched after being in his room. My hands are almost raw from the constant scrubbing and germ-x-ing, and I’m hoping desperately that I will not be the next rotavirus victim.

With Logan on the mend and a doctor appointment scheduled for first thing tomorrow morning, my fingers are crossed that he will be back in school and I will be back to work, and life might settle and return to normal in time for the weekend. I had to forfeit my plans for the Crab and Oyster Fest at Broadway Oyster Bar on Saturday, because I don’t want to potentially expose my grandmother, who is back on chemo, to the boys’ virus unnecessarily. But just as I was typing this I received an invite for girls’ night right here in town…and after this last week that might be just what I need!


2 thoughts on “2018 is Off to a Rough Beginning

  1. That was quite a beginning to the new year! Here I was thinking that my year started off patchy, but yours took the cake. On the bright side, the good thing is that you’re so industrial and determined! Thumbs up!


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