I’m just getting back to this blog after what seems like a lifetime away. Just a few days after my last post, when I said Finn was feeling under the weather, he was admitted to the hospital. He had a systemic Strep A infection, Toxic Shock Syndrome, and Septic arthritis. He nearly died. It was beyond a doubt the worst thing that has ever happened to me, which sounds so ridiculous, since it didn’t actually happen TO me. He spent almost two weeks in the hospital, had two surgeries on his hip to clean out the joint sepsis, was on a respirator, and finally came home, with a PICC in his arm, and on infused antibiotics for 6 weeks. Also a walker, and physical therapy twice a week. Wow. Obviously, the garden plans fell by the wayside, although we did manage to maintain a few things. Aurora’s corn, a few of her beets, and her zucchini, which are growing like mad! Finn’s got some Thyme, and some watermelons, and some sugar snap peas, and a few carrots. Our bees were doing well, the spring was so early and SO hot, that their population exploded! We caught several swarms. We supered several hives, and Jacob put bee escapes on them, then we weren’t able to check them for some time, and the escapes didn’t work, so by the time we checked on them, we’d inadvertently killed a bunch of our bees, and had supers full of dead bees. Ugh. The honey seems to be fine, though.
Having Finn so sick, and spending so much time in the hospital, not just with my family but watching and meeting others, I really did have some epiphanies. Not religious ones, just some light shed on basic things I already know, but had been delaying acting upon. And yes, I know that’s corny and sentimental and trite, and that everyone feels that way when faced with mortality, their own, or a family member’s. Those facts don’t change the feeling, however. I have been a little burned out on my work. I love working with dogs and their owners, I just love my kids, and homeschooling and spending time with my kids, more, and I don’t feel like there is time enough in the day to do both well. Maybe when they get a little older, but not right now. They need me, and I need them. I enjoy watching them learn things, and hearing their opinions, and being with them. If I miss something, it doesn’t happen again, and I can’t get them to re-create it for my viewing pleasure. So, I really, really want to quit working. I am, of course, torn about this, both from a career perspective, and from an income perspective, not to mention how much I enjoy most of my clients, and helping them become successful. However, when I balance this against my kids, well, it just doesn’t balance out. After much, worry, thought, discussion with various friends and of course, Jacob, I’ve decided to take a sabbatical. I want some time away from work, clients, other people’s problems, to be with the kids and my family, train and show my own dogs, and work through my long term life plan a bit more. Of course, I’m such a waffler that I first said I was going to quit completely on June 1st. Now it’s June 6th, and I’ve not been able to tell any of my students or clients, and I’ve decided to continue with the petsitting part of the job, and maybe the teaching classes for the Club, and doing the behavior evaluations. And I took a new client yesterday… I have 2 more weeks of classes to teach, I think, and I really have set aside a few weekends during the summer which I won’t book so that the family can go somewhere and do something, but I still feel torn… I should be listening to my body, though, which is screaming that I’m under too much stress, with a large amount of stomach pain. Well, gut pain. Something’s gotta give, and I’m afraid that it’s me, right now. Which isn’t good for anyone.