It is disgraceful that I’ve been home on leave for more than two weeks and still haven’t written a post about how I ended up on leave earlier than planned. Bad blogger!
I turned 30 on September 20th. In an unusually fortuitous piece of rostering, I had a four-day weekend over my birthday. In an even more surprising turn of events, H had the same four days off work. THIS NEVER HAPPENS. Fours days off, together, and over my birthday? Unbelievable.
I had a lovely weekend, filled with several birthday celebrations, including my first surprise party (which I truly did not see coming – I am thoroughly gullible). Lovely H went to a lot of effort including decorating with balloons and streamers, which is not something my macho husband has done before. My girlfriends totally spoiled me with not one but two girls-only birthday events. It was wonderful.
The downside was that I was physically much more active than I should have been. I knew that I was pushing my limits, but darn it, I’m only going to turn 30 once and I was determined to make the most of it! Work had already become a struggle – the 10 hour shifts, spent largely on my feet with lots of bending and moving, were pretty difficult on my pelvis. I was truly dreading returning to work on the Wednesday afternoon after my long weekend.
Luckily I didn’t have to!
I had my 34 week OB appointment on Wednesday morning. The moment my doc saw me waddling and wincing my way into his office he flat-out banned me from returning to work. I have to admit that I felt hugely relieved. I’d been dreaming of taking early leave ever since my pelvic instability was diagnosed, but to be honest I felt too guilty. I was rostered to work up until 36 weeks, and I guess I didn’t want to feel like I was wimping out and leaving my colleagues in the lurch. Having the doctor take the decision out of my hands took all of the pressure off me. I went into work after my appointment and was able to tell them that, rather than not coping with work, I wasn’t allowed to work. (And the added benefit is that the extra time off was sick leave rather than coming out of my maternity leave).
I quickly realised that there was simply no way I would have coped with the 80 hours of work I had been rostered to work over the 10 days following my appointment. After my birthday weekend and several weeks of powering-on through work when I really should have been taking it easy my body simply gave up. I spent the first 3 days in bed or on the couch, sleeping frequently, and infrequently painfully hobbling to the kitchen or bathroom. I felt truly disgusting. I’d been ‘keeping-on keeping-on’ for weeks, and now that I had the chance to rest, my body went on strike.
The good news is that after that much-needed period of rest I did regain a little mobility. I’m still in pain every day, but it is mostly manageable and I’m sleeping well enough at night that I rarely need an afternoon nap. I do spent a fair amount of time getting to know my couch while reading or watching DVDs, but to be honest on some days I really enjoy the enforced laziness. Although I am only allowed to use the 5 stairs to our front door once a day, that does allow me a few trips to a friend’s place, the movies, or out for a meal. With the silver lining being that I have totally given up all responsibility for vacuuming and taking the rubbish out!