Time after time, I was forced over or dealing with schedule changes. I was beginning to become stressed, going to sleep in class, and starting to miss my children.
Finally, there came a day that I was able to leave at my regular time. I immediately rushed home to grab my children from their granny’s house. On the way home in the car excited and somewhat relieved, I remember looking back at my them and saying “Mommy is home today aren’t you guys glad to see me?” with a smile. My daughter Ariel, who was 4 at the time looked right at me like I never said a word and said “When are we going back to grandma’s house? I like being over there instead.” Now I know she was only 4, but honestly my feelings were crushed. My children started to grow distant from me… and honestly who could blame them? I was never really at home and even when they saw me, I was tired or in between school and work.
As I was sitting down at a table after eating dinner that evening, I suddenly felt a stabbing pain in my stomach and a my mouth started to water like I was about to puke. Running to the bathroom, it started to come up, but instead of any food, it was a burning sensation. It felt like I was spitting up acid. Thinking it was just heartburn from something I ate, I took a spoon full of mustard and went to bed. I woke up feeling better and thinking that it was over, I went to work the next day. After I ate lunch, I suddenly got that urge to throw up again. I immediately ran to the bathroom only to end up with the same result as the day before. This happened for the next couple of days until I decided to schedule an appointment with my doctor.
After consistent visits and no trace of illnesses, my doctored finally sat down and have a heart to heart with yours truly;
“Mea, I am concerned… your tests are showing no illnesses outside heartburn or gastritis but your are constantly here and are in pain. Mea… I don’t think that it is just sickness… are you stressed out?”
“No… I’m fine I just got a lot on my plate… but I will be ok.” I said while getting my jacket on.
Still looking concerned my doctor handed me a doctor’s note. “Well instead of doing more tests, why don’t you take a day or two off to rest. Looks like you need it.”
“Doctor I wish I could, but I have to go to work… bills don’t pay themselves you know.”
Walking out, my phone started to ring. It was my good friend and coworker Ralph.
“Hey. How did everything go?” He asked.
“It’s okay, the doctor couldn’t find anything but he told me to take a day off… but I have to pay these bills. I’m past due on my gas and….”
Ralph immediately stopped me “Mea… stop that. You are worrying. You will always have a chance to make money and pay bills, but you won’t always have a chance to get your health back to 100%. Do what the doctor says and take a day off… the job will be alright… believe me they are not hurting. I’m about to clock in so… I will give you a call later to check on you.”
Reluctant, I followed doctor’s orders and called in. That night I felt somewhat better, but the more I started to think about work again I started to dread the coming day as I went to bed.