KONFESSION: The last 11 days of my life have been the most miserable I ever remember having – and that includes my October struggle with swine flu – TWICE. I could bore all you healthy people with the details of how I was diagnosed, then misdiagnosed, then saved by a new doctor who finally discovered I had developed pneumonia in both lungs. But I won’t. Just know that there has been a lot of fevers and chills and sweating and headaches and coughing and mucus and, okay… I’ll stop.

But I’ve learned some really precious things about what makes up the tiny little corner of the world that is my life… and it’s worth sharing.
1. Dogs are the best nurses. My 5-pound Yorkie, Elphie, is my personal self-proclaimed nurse. She has hardly eaten or played or done anything in eleven days except cuddle up to my side or in my lap. She KNOWS I’ve been very sick and her sympathy is obvious as she refuses to enjoy her life as long as I’m this bad. I’ve tried to fake it and toss a toy at her to fetch, but she doesn’t buy it. I had NO IDEA dogs were this sensitive and it breaks my heart! Now, my other Yorkie, Luna… different story.
2. My husband, Sam, is pretty much Captain Awesome. He shows up regularly to make sure I wake up to eat – and some of the time I probably wouldn’t have broken out of my feverish coma long enough even to eat, if he hadn’t been there. I knew on Monday morning when I woke up that I was NOT getting better and I was ready to be rolled into a hospital bed. Sam had already left for work and I texted him: “Fever is back.” I knew then that I needed a hospital. I couldn’t function and I knew the doctor was wrong when he said he could find no cause to warrant my symptoms. Sam texted back, “I am going to come home now and take care of you, Krissi.” And he did. He had a plan, contacted the new doctor, got me in THAT DAY, and it worked… a few days later, I am on the road to healing. I keep looking at him and thinking, “In sickness and in health… poor guy never knew when he said those words that the 2009-2010 school year would be like this.” But that’s part of what makes him Captain Awesome. The man meant his vows and sticks to them.
3. Sometimes you just need your parents. My parents are both generous people who show love in different ways. I had only to make one text to my dad about how bad things were and how much school I was missing for him to come to my rescue with whatever I needed financially to get through it. My mom calls, sends texts and emails everyday with Scripture encouraging me and checking up on my progress – and this is while SHE’s been struggling with her own horrible case of pneumonia. I know had she not already been in a weakened state that she would have been up here cleaning my house and cooking for me and doing my laundry. My parents might have been divorced for 20+years, but they are the best set of parents a girl could have in times such as these.
4. The best kind of friends are the ones that teach YOU how to be a good friend. And, man, I’m so humbled every day by the loyalty and thoughtfulness of the friends around me. My school friends have looked out for my classes, helped my subs, covered my responsibilities. And then there are church friends… I made a flippant statement on Facebook that I didn’t have Ferris Bueller’s Day Off on DVD… two copies showed up at my house (thank you, Sam and Barbara!). A dear friend, Tammy Warren, brought us a yummy dinner tonight – chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans, rolls, chocolate cake – and she doesn’t have extra time to throw around! Another friend, Brian Whitfield, surprised me with flowers and chocolate cupcakes tonight. I’ve gotten offers from so many others – everything from keeping me company in those dark moments to bringing me whatever I needed. And let’s not discount the countless prayers that I know people have uttered to God on my behalf. It’s astounding to me how much people are willing to give and it really shames me for how much more I should be doing for others.
5. The teenagers in my life are not too busy to care. I know I get to work with some of the best teenagers out there, but let’s face it… teens are teens and can sometimes be too busy with their own lives to notice others. But not my kids. Every day I have gotten a text, a Facebook message, a comment, a note or something from the students in my life. My sweet Amelia offered to come hang with me and bring movies, and even though I was incapable of doing that, she instead sent flowers and a yummy cookie icing sandwich (with the sweetest card). So many of my teens have taken the time to tell me they’re praying for me or that they miss me. And, I’ll be honest… it feels good to be missed. Sometimes you work so hard to make a difference and then you wonder if it even does. I’m just so thankful that my kids at church are so thoughtful and that I teach the kind of kids at school who can still behave and keep their cool with a sub in the midst of my three-week absence. I am so blessed.
6. There is wisdom in my favorite teen 80’s movies.
“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t slow down to notice, you might miss it.” -Ferris Bueller
“Goonies never say die.” – Mikey (Well, I almost did this week – a few times – but I’m a Goonie, and Mikey is RIGHT. Goonies don’t quit.)
7. There is some REALLY GOOD cough medicine out there. WOW. ‘Nuff said.