Sunday, December 6, 2009

Great Pains

Friday was going to be a normal day— drag self out of bed, head to the office, no casual Friday for me due meeting with work boss and client team about an event we’re planning that takes place on the 11th. The to-do list for the day included finishing billing review and sending it upstream to the partners for approval. It even held the potential for a complete full, one-hour lunch outside the building for the second time in about three weeks, which was good, because my reserves of frozen microwave lunches had been but a memory since about Tuesday.

It didn’t take long for the day to go wonky. The meeting at the client’s office ran long. At 11:00 we returned to our own office, with another unfortunately long list of time-sensitive tasks bearing my initials, including writing the scripting notes for the emcee of the event. To make it more exciting, the partner directing the project, who had been awaiting a call from the office of a high level state official for three days, was leaving at noon. My day turned into me serving a sentence at my desk in case the urgent call came in while the Boss Partner was out. On second thought, that’s pretty much a normal day after all.

Virginia, the office breakfast angel, had brought in Sausage McGriddles, which turned out to be a fortunate situation for me – one of those became my lunch. At 2:30, the first of what would be a long series of back and forth emails and calls came in. And I will say, it was fun to hear “Tammy, so-and-so from the highest ranking state official’s office is on line six three …”. Three times in one afternoon! But I don’t want to brag or drop names or anything. Hey, I got to feel important for a nanosecond.

At the end of the work day, it was a mad dash home to meet the HVAC contractor for the energy evaluation on the house and an estimate for a heating and cooling system. At 8:00, I heated up leftover pizza for us both, becasue we were ready to keel over with hunger, and a while later, the process was done. The verdict: my house is “loose,” with a lot of air drafting from the attic and basement. The attic needs more insulation. The furnace has been confirmed as a 1983 model – which means it is on borrowed time based on an average life of 10 to 15 years, a nugget of knowledge I possess from my recent crafting of the brilliant copy on the HVAC company’s website and ad series. And who knew that a system’s fan is NOT supposed to blow 24/7? (I sure didn’t.) Now I await the shocking news in the form of the estimate, which could very well send me into a permanent state of shock (just like in a soap opera).

In a shockingly brief time after the pizza ingestion, digestive disaster struck in the form of cramps, stomach spasms and shooting pains. It was a long night and a long wait until 9:00 to call my doctor’s office, which, fortunately, (brilliantly!) has weekend office hours. I had only to hang on until 1:30 for professional help. I felt a little like a dog that had swallowed a ball.

And one doctor’s visit, one urine sample, an x-ray, a pharmacy prescription for the spasms, the Christmas parade in 32 degree weather, a cancelled trip to Nashville (called off on the way to the Interstate due to intestinal distress) and 29 hours later, they were still with me. Along with hunger coupled with a total fear of eating. The official diagnosis? Well, let’s just say I’m going to live, and this, too, shall pass. I was a wee bit disappointed it wasn’t the alien creature I had predicted. So much for self diagnosis.

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