Thursday, October 1, 2009

Doctors Katya and Natalia at Your (My) Service

(Leaning in to examine me, right after having given me her favorite teddy bear to hold--you can see his fluffy head)

I'm sick.

So, so sick...

I even missed work today. Diagnosis? Bacterial infection, causing aching all over, pain in ears and throat, burning in chest, and a fever since Monday. 

It's been developing for about two weeks now, but I was kind of in denial... I did my best to take it easy, putting off whatever didn't have to get done at work--but then that only lead to things' piling up, and now I'm both very sick and very behind.

It's ironic, because a lovely former student of mine (she's now in law school at Harvard and I taught her French was she was in eighth grade) wrote me the kindest email yesterday about how much she enjoys reading my blog... That it's been really inspirational to her to read about our life, seeing how a woman can find fulfillment in both family, work and creative personal endeavors. She's at that crossroads in her legal studies, about to decide what type of law career to begin--and where--and she wants to "have it all" down the road (a job she loves and time for her family).

Oh, but my dear... It's so not easy... And so many days it feels darn near impossible, as if you're clawing your way through it... 

I'm sick now because I can't do it all... I just keep telling myself that things have been extremely exhausting because I started working in mid-July (and next year I won't have to do that) and because I'm new to this job... We've started many new programs, too. And many of our faculty are new, with this being the first time I've worked with helping new colleagues in their transition. 

On top of it all, I'm teaching TOEFL preparation to the 10th graders, something I had never done before. I had never actually even seen a TOEFL exam until August. I'm probably putting two hours (sometimes even more) of prep/grading into every 40-minute lesson. That will surely get easier as I feel more mastery over the material... But the stakes are so high, since the students need to do well on the exam at the end of this academic year in order to apply to universities in the USA, Scotland and UK next fall. 

Back to that super team of doctors I have on my case, though. The girls aren't used to seeing me entirely out of commission and they have been the loveliest daughters on earth! So, so sweet... Wiping my face with their cool hands to relieve the fever, snuggling me all the time (ugh, hope they don't catch it...), whispering me encouraging and loving words... 

Doctor Katya's verdict? Among many other things, no raising my voice at all, so I need to stay in bed (where I can't see what they're up to!). 

Added later: It's not the flu; they did bloodwork at the clinic and determined it's not viral. 


Tina in CT said...

Too bad they're too young to make chicken soup!

You don't want to hear this but.... you are doing too much.

Get your flu shots.

Your mother

Rachael said...

Stress catches up with you it sounds. Take care of yourself! Glad the girls are being so helpful. Hope you're feeling better soon. Are you sure it's not the flu and that you don't need tamiflu?

Annie said...

Oh, I'm so sorry for you! And, it is a cautionary tale since I'm sitting here half-sick at work....just giving myself a brief break before getting back to it. But classes start this weekend, no letting up allowed. I wish I could take the TOEFL from you distance-learning. My job here is so iffy, I need something to fall back on.

Follow the doctor's advice and get better!

Susan said...

I am also sick. Had a cold, flu since we got back 9 days ago.
Im finally going to the doctor today.
Missed work and all.......

Anonymous said...

I hope you will feel better soon! It just the beginning of bad and cold weather in Moscow, and it will last for a while. You better,as they say in Alaska(at least in Northern Exposure), fatten yourself up for the winter. Perhaps honey and milk?
Kids can do it even if they can not do the chicken soup.
Best wishes.

Tina in CT said...


I wondered the same and don't trust the doctors there.

The Expatresse said...

Get well soon. Let me know if you need anything esp. over the weekend.

Amanda said...


I'm a long time lurker, first time poster. I absolutely adore your blog. Your comment about work/home life got me thinking... In the end my comment became too long, so I've turned it into a post.

Cindy Niles said...

As often as you & your girls get sick, maybe you should totally disinfect your apartment and auto. Lots and lots of Lysol!!!!! Feel better soon.

Happymom4 aka Hope Anne said...

Get your Vit D! Here in the USA some of the alternative guys are saying that low levels of Vit D are implicated in getting ill, especially with the flu.

Get well soon!