Toilets Make Crappy Hug Partners, But Gratitude Is a Decision

Laurie and Tiger hidden by pillows in the bed.
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This selfie best captures how I felt and feel after my bout with the flu or food poisoning. Wiped out, exhausted, shivering, and grateful for my warm, fuzzy, faithful companion.

Dreams CAN come true – and I guess, so can Nightmares!

Sunday evening I hit the pillow content with the knowledge that I wouldn’t have to report to jury duty just yet. I had checked in and was informed I was released for Monday. Hooray, an unexpected day off! All was right with my little world. Tiger the cat was cuddling me, I had seen the premiere of Game of Thrones in the SAME year it was broadcast for the very first time, and Mark and I had spent a little quality time together. Yep, it doesn’t get better than this…

Strange – what a STRANGE dream.

Now, I’ll bet many of you have had the ‘I need to use the restroom dream’ that often comes when we need to visit our porcelain pal in the night. But how many of you have had the “I think I need to PUKE my guts out?” dream?

I awoke going, “Whoa, how WEIRD of a feeling was THAT dream,” until I realized I DID NEED TO PUKE MY GUTS OUT!

I’ll spare you further details – except that Mark had to bring a mop bucket in case I wasn’t sure which end needed to hit the porcelain pal first.


This brought “I feel CRAPPY” to a whole new level.

The entire night from hell seemed endless. How could this happen? I’d felt fine when I retired.

Food poisoning made the most sense.

Later on, Mark and I tossed ALL of the food I’d consumed that day and the day prior. But this was later in the story.

I begged Mark for ginger ale (or death), I wasn’t sure at that point which I’d actually prefer. Luckily, he came up with the soda. I could just about manage to hold down a sip of it after each explosive event.

Believe it or not, Brave Companions, some of my thoughts were about being PISSED as hell, because I had just SCRUBBED THE HECK out of my bathroom, and NOW LOOK AT IT!

But this thought did make me laugh too. And I decided in my misery to turn it around.

“How much WORSE would this toilet hugging be, if my hug pal hadn’t at least started out minty fresh?”

This REALLY made me laugh.

“Really Laurie? You are going to practice gratitude RIGHT FRICKIN’NOW?”

Yep, it was practice gratitude or really slide into misery and despair.

Well, to be honest, the misery and despair pretty much ruled the night after that.

At Least I Don’t Have Jury Duty Today

By morning, I was able to sleep in ten minute spurts between ongoing visits to my night of hell buddy. My other buddy, Tiger, had now been banned from the bedroom, because I’m sad to report having your cat knead your tummy at a time like this isn’t the BEST feeling in the world, and I was scared I’d toss him away violently in my frenzied “Puke gal walking” state.

I was grateful to have my iPad for company since Mark sensibly was staying away. With it, I could stream endless episodes of my junk TV of choice, Survivor, and scream at those lucky, starving, exhausted, filthy contestants, at LEAST YOU DON’T HAVE WHATEVER THE F THIS IS!

I was sweaty, dirty, miserable, and wondering if I would EVER be able to hold down a sip of water ever again. No food, and I mean NO food, had any appeal in any way. I actually marveled to myself, that I had EVER actually wanted a bite of anything. Even my favorite dishes seemed putrid. The thought of any smell, nauseating. I was actually glad at that point that I have extra poundage, as that meant I wouldn’t need to eat for several weeks or months or ever again.

I was SO glad I didn’t have to think about jury duty. I had also emailed Viki, my singing teacher in the night, that our lesson was off, as I couldn’t sing and dive for the restroom at the same time.

Peaceful existence.

A day off to rest.



The endless day of misery

Well, I’m guessing you need no more description to understand how Monday went down.

The main events DID finally trail off, and I was able to force a bite of banana and half a soda cracker as my stomach needed something besides itself to throw its acid at. I also successfully drank an entire ginger ale one sip at a time and two glasses of water. I was quite proud of myself, as this seemed a feat worthy of the Rocky score.

Mark decided to cheer me with a gift.

A lilac spray in a glass in the kitchen

Mark tried to ‘cheer me up’ by bringing me fresh lilacs from our tree. Unfortunately, the smell can take me back to my hospital stay following surgery. I stupidly brought lilac spray there to spritz on my pillow to ‘cheer MYSELF up’ and accidentally associated one of my favorite scents with the hospital!

I was grateful to him, as I Love lilacs. But the smell almost did me in again. Read the caption of the photo above for details.

I decided a shower would make me feel better, and it did.

The wonders of how crystal clear every drop felt on my poor ravaged body. How lovely the soapy soap bubbles making me renewed and fresh….SCREECH…oh no, it can’t be…not YARDLY LILAC soap! Arrrrghhh! I Tossed the offending soap out of the shower and grabbed instead some wonderful scent free soap I use on my face.

Nirvana. Soap I can’t smell.

Don’t tell the governor, but even during our famous draught, this was not a short shower. But wonderfully criminal as I felt, I did need to finally leave it and wrap myself into fresh jammies and a new attitude.

As I started to feel better, gratitude began to bloom. Every moment I DIDN’T feel as awful as previously, was a blessing. And I thought it unlikely that I would be called to jury duty on a Tuesday, and so would have more time to recover.

Call Right Away When the Lines Are Closed

I checked my jury service portal online, and found, to my horror I was to report the next day. I considered for a fleeting moment, whether I should indeed report, to get my civic duty over, but realized, this was not feasible.

The instructions said, if you have an emergency, call this number right away and speak to a representative.

Ok, I’d better dial right now.

The phone tree had NO option for representative.

Too tired to curse, I finally figured out the secret combo of numbers that would inadvertently connect me to an actual human.

“Our hours are from 8:30 am to 4:30 PM”


It was now after 5:00 PM

I felt uneasy knowing I couldn’t report and couldn’t call until RIGHT BEFORE I WAS SUPPOSED TO REPORT.

Mark told me to chill. I won’t write what I told him.

Then after I calmed down, he explained, that many people get sick and it wouldn’t be a big deal. He even rubbed my back after. Generous man. I was grateful for that back rub. And his advice. And boy was I tired.

The Nice Human and other Blessings

Having already cracked the secret phone tree code the evening prior, I was able to reach an actual human at jury services by 8:35 the next AM. She was very nice and sympathetic and assured me, “It was not a big deal” – dang that Mark, he is almost ALWAYS right – as she moved my service into next week.

So Tuesday began the horrible part of illness where you aren’t sick enough to “be in every immediate moment” (thank all that’s holy) yet you don’t feel well enough to DO anything! TV was hard to watch (attention deficit). Reading impossible. I was so weak, I couldn’t walk around my yard, let alone, the park. I did manage to wash my bedding, and THAT made me happy. I posted a brief message online, but even THAT made me tired and I had to rest.

Finally I found this solution to amusing myself.

Laurie's podcast logo on the big screen TV via the podcast app on Apple TV

I was SO bored I amused myself seeing what I looked like on the whopping big TV thanks to the podcast app on our brand new Apple TV streaming device. (Also how we FINALLY got to watch Game of Thrones in its actual season). I listened to some old shows and HATED what I sound like. Usually, I’m not critical of my regular voice, so I think I was just wacked out and hating everything at that point.

Since my old shows are SO old compared to now, I’ve forgotten them and they were entertaining to listen to. Since they were MY shows, and I’d recorded them, no worries if I fell asleep. I did find myself becoming very self-critical over them, especially the whiny ones.

Mayhaps too close to home that day?

But I was cheered by the comments that I saw come in to this blog, even though I couldn’t whip up energy to answer. Even if I was buried under my pillows and my own self-pity, you, the BCs were having a life and thriving and wishing me well. Hooray for life! Hooray for BCs!

As I lay there, on the sofa, listening to my old self spew wisdom, nonsense, and all manner of silliness, I was grateful. I laughed again at Foolish Fun (Thanks Dawny) Marveled at Stéfanie’s beautiful voice during her secret topics, enjoyed Cheryl’s wry humor in her writing and Fionna’s wonderful songs. I also missed many of the early BCs whom I’d almost forgotten since they are no longer active. But I also marveled at just how many BCs HAVE contributed to the show and to my life.

Yep, jury duty can interrupt your life. Flu can bring you down in misery. But BCs can lift you up.

And from the bottom of my heart. I’m grateful.

Comments box:

9 thoughts on “Toilets Make Crappy Hug Partners, But Gratitude Is a Decision

  1. Dave

    Great Picture.

    You know there are some times I wish I constantly had the flu….I’ts the one time I really can’t binge….LOL

    Although a binge is usually the first thing I do when I feel better.

    1. Laurie@CompulsiveOvereatingDiary Post author

      Hi Dave, I’m glad you liked my photo. I called that one, my arty sick pic 😉
      I know you were joking, but I remember when I used to secretly be glad when I was sick, because I couldn’t eat and I thought I’d lose weight. Something that I’m grateful to this time round, is I actually had no thought of that. I was/am sick, my body has/had its needs, and I WAS really in the moment about trying to make my body more comfortable. Those old thought patterns are starting to budge. I’m so glad you commented about it, because it brings to mind how much my eating disorder was in charge of me and how I far I’ve come. Not perfect, but moving forward. Thanks for all of the support, my friend, xoxoxoxo

      1. Dave

        I know my comment was funny, but there is truth behind it. I still struggle with wishing I would stay sick so I could not eat or it would pass through me quickly (the runs)…sorry TMI????.

        I am better armed in my battle against COE, thanks to you and all the BC’s

  2. dawny

    hugs miss… so glad it appears you may be on the mend..

    sounds HORRIBLE to say the least, once.. I am NOT jealous or the least bit *green* with envy… Im a bit green with your descriptives.. LOL

    Hopeful recovery and back to your snappy smiley self sooner than later..
    a great kitty you have luvin he’s momma.. wooohoo

    I told you time and again that husband of yours IS truly AMAAAZZZINNNGGGG. lucky gal

    Drats, that the duty to civil services was extended to ‘drag’ it out, but seems for the best…

    1. Laurie@CompulsiveOvereatingDiary Post author

      Hi Dawny, thanks for the good wishes. I was using my humor to feel better. Sorry about that 😉

      Something I AM glad for, is that for the first time I didn’t think about my weight or my usual eating behavior during this tummy event. I wasn’t secretly glad I might be losing a little (what a way to do THAT), or glad that I would be able to eat more later and not feel guilty. I actually didn’t think that way at all. So I AM grateful for progress. I’m making some white rice now for lunch. Hoping it will work. I think it will. Still tired, still many comments to go, but thought I’d at least get started with yours.


      PS, I DID secretly hope that maybe they wouldn’t call for jury duty and I’d complete my service AND my tummy problems in the same week.

  3. Nola

    Love your attitude and I’m sorry you’re not quite up to par but I’m very jealous about Game of Thrones. We just watched Season 4 and I also just read A Dance with Dragons. I’m in severe GOT withdrawal mode and was very tempted to subscribe to HBO just so I could watch Season 5 without having to wait several months.

    Anyway, get some rest and get better soon!

    1. Laurie@CompulsiveOvereatingDiary Post author

      Hi Nola, that’s exactly what we did. Once HBO Now came out, we couldn’t stop ourselves. We always wondered why HBO didn’t just make itself available via streaming since so many would be willing to pay to see GOT alone! We’re very happy we did. Apple dropped its price on its TV device (which almost KILLED me to buy since we have a perfectly good RUKU) but GOT is GOT! And the HD aspect of our whoppin’ big TV is much more clear via the Apple device (a bonus). Usually we wait the year and buy the Blue-ray version and binge watch the whole season. It was WEIRD not to see the next episode immediately! Thanks for the good wishes.

  4. Cheryl

    You have my deepest sympathy, girlfriend. Been there, done that, said “stuff that t-shirt”. Hope by now you’re feeling all better. Did you take any mental readings as you improved to see how it felt to REALLY have an empty stomach? Big Hugs, Cheryl

    1. Laurie@CompulsiveOvereatingDiary Post author

      Hmm, the interesting thing is, since this whole episode started I have had absolutely no sensation of emptiness nor hunger. I have zero appetite. I do have the desire to make my tummy feel better and be less rolling and to absorb the acid. I also know, I need to eat some calories for energy as I am so tired. It actually is work to eat and no pleasure in it as yet. Very weird indeed!


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