A Different Kind Of Vacation

July 29, 2010

It’s been a week since David had his surgery, and four days since we’ve been home recovering.

Clockwise from top left: the patient’s domain, my home nursing shelf, Cleo wondering what’s going on around here, and the huge pile of snacks that we’ve amassed.

My patient is improving by leaps & bounds, and soon he’ll be zooming around. But for the first month he still can’t put any weight on his right leg and he can’t drive himself anywhere. That means he still needs help doing some fairly simple things like going to the bathroom, showering, and having meals prepared. In addition to activities of daily living, I also have to give him a shot in his belly once a day, give him his medication, help him do his physical therapy, & change his surgical dressing once a day.

I love having my husband as a patient, but in the meantime I don’t think I’ve been taking very good care of myself. The only time I leave the house is to get the mail, go to the pharmacy, or attend a previously set obligation. I sleep late, don’t shower till midafternoon (if at all), hardly ever put on makeup, and eat junk. Then there’s the fact that David’s family is getting ready to leave on their vacation that we were supposed to go on, while I’m faced with the prospect of going back to work with nothing to look forward to. The result of this lifestyle & attitude is that I have been getting progressively more and more depressed.

This morning David gave me a wake-up call when he told me that he was really worried about me & that he was feeling guilty about being the cause of my sadness. In reality it has nothing to do with him – I absolutely love all the time we’re getting to spend together – but obviously I’m just not being good to myself. When I have days off from work during the week I’ll routinely spend all day at home and enjoy it, but doing that for an extended period of time is just not healthy for me.

So this is what I’m doing to get happy again:

First, I had a cup of coffee and took a few deep breaths.

Next, I called work and told my boss that I’m taking another week off. I don’t want to stress about going back too soon or feel guilty that I should be there and not at home. I want a little more time to relax.

Finally, I made a list of fun and – since we’re kind of broke right now – free things I can do at home or in the area in the next week that will make me happy and make it seem a little like vacation. This is my list so far:

  • Take the dogs to the dog park
  • Start running again
  • Watch Glee on Netflix
  • Visit the Orange Show Monument and Beer Can House
  • Use the spa gift card my family got me
  • Use the Groupons I have stored: one for microdermabrasion, another for products at an earth-friendly store
  • Go to the yoga studio
  • See a movie (I have a couple free passes I got at work)
  • Send some “just because” cards
  • Figure out some sort of project to do around the house

So far so good, I think. It starts now.

What about you? If you had a week to spend at home and not much money to spend, what would you do to make it into a vacation?

Posted in: health, personal, me, personal

Comments on A Different Kind Of Vacation

  1. 1

    From Lauren From Texas:

    On my days off I love making sure everything is in order. Sometimes this means little projects I have been putting off forever, a big grocery store trip, making/freezing some meals, baking (which I love but never have time for), etc. I also love to “pamper myself” – give myself manis & pedis, clean out my closet, and try to put together new outfits with stuff I already have. Thrifting is my latest vice & is SUPER cheap – it gives you the thrill of shopping without spending a lot. Obviously I love cooking & baking, & it can be fun to have time to cook a fancy meal & dessert without having to worry about a time frame. Watching movies, reading, exercising – all good ideas! I hope your “staycation” turns out to be surprisingly fun & relaxing!

  2. 2

    From kapachino:

    Love your ideas! Since I’ve been home four days the house is already really tidy, and I’ve come to terms with the fact that at this point cooking is more stressful than fun for me. Thrifting sounds really fun but our level of broke-ness prohibits me from doing even that! However, revisiting my closet is something I might try! :)

  3. 3

    From Callina:

    Boy can I relate! Some things I try to do that I can look forward to when I have downtime are home projects–something big enough that gets you excited, but small enough that you can accomplish quickly and easily. Last weekend I just repainted our bathroom vanity. It was easy and therapeutic, and my bathroom looks better! All I spent $ on was a small can of paint.

    I also go to the library and LOAD UP on books. I’ll explore a new section and find new things I’m interested in reading/learning about. Books will keep me busy for a while.

  4. 4

    From kapachino:

    I’ve been doing so much reading! I have a whole shelf of books to read, and I’m slowly working my through them.

    I really want to do a project around the house, but I haven’t decided what yet!

  5. 5

    From Scott:

    I would read books and play video games until my eyes burned. Then I would build a bookshelf. We really need another bookshelf upstairs!

  6. 6

    From Amber from Girl with the Red Hair:

    I would READ, sit outside, go for walks, get ice cream, tackle a big baking/cooking project, clean my house from top to bottom, go to the movies, rent movies I’ve been dying to see but haven’t had the time and catch up on blogging/organization/life.

    Oh, and DEFINITELY use that spa gift card!!!

    I hope you get some R&R time in soon. Your health is important too, remember!! :)

  7. 7

    From Jessica:

    I love that you made a list of what will make you happy again. I need to do something very similar and take a long hard look at it.

  8. 8

    From Nora:

    I’m glad he’s starting to feel better! I’m doubly glad that you’re taking care of you. All your activities sound great. I’d definitely go to the library, hang out at Barnes & Noble, go to the zoo & art museum (they are both free here), window shop at my favorite mall, and bake with whatever ingredients I have at my house.

    Oh, and catch up on my movies/queue on netflix! I’m “behind” on watching things if that’s possible.

    Send our get well wishes to D! Enjoy the next week off and time with your man, even if not under the most ideal of circumstances.

  9. 9

    From Nicole:

    Awww, way to be positive!!! You go, girl!

  10. 10

    From Emily Jane:

    Great action plan. Glee is definitely a must. When I’m home off work (which is pretty rare!) I feel guilty for not being at work, so I’ll do things like laundry or hoovering or just making sure the house is nice and clean, but it doesn’t do anything for my personal happiness! I would catch up on writing – just make a nice big cup of tea or coffee, and sit down and write for a good few hours. I’d probably read too, and spend an unhealthy amount of time researching music recommendations and finding new tunes :)

    Do take some time for you – it’s important to look after yourself!

  11. 11

    From becca hoelscher:

    Hey, I had a thought for your house, maybe. I don’t know how it would work out in yours, but we have too many projects in ours to count and can’t seem to get started on any. However, I grew very tired of out boring bathroom so I took off the doors of the cabinets (you know how I am about that. I like to see my stuff!) I arranged everything in baskets that we already had, I rolled up our extra towels, and displayed some of the lovely lotions and soaps that I forget we have. It makes me feel like I am entering my own – not tiny – but intimate “spa” bathroom. It added color and cuteness (and now guests can use those things without snooping) all for nothing! Someday I can actually overhaul the whole thing, though. Good luck with your house.

  12. 12

    From Kyla Roma:

    I’m so glad that you’ve been taking more time for yourself and are trying to keep things feeling positive & normal. You guys are in my thoughts & prayers! <3

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