The Subtle Rewards of Sickness

There is something oddly comforting about being sick, of wandering around in a medication induced fog, shuffling from room to room in baby soft yoga pants and yellow slipper socks, some book or other held open by it's spine and wrapped around my middle like a protective shield. I have allowed myself to succumb to the entreaties of my husband and my friends~go to bed, rest, drink lots of hot tea, watch mindless television. In fact, dare I admit that it's a tiny dream come true? The evil bacteria that have lodged so peremptorily in my throat and sinuses have perhaps given me a small gift. And I have quite willingly abdicated my responsibilities for the past two days. I have not worked, or shopped, or gone to the bank or the pharmacy. I have not walked the dogs, nor cooked or cleaned. I have allowed others to do those things for me, without protest, without even the slightest nudge of guilt poking me in the shoulder and urging me to my feet. I could perhaps get used to this. Alas, I feel this coming to an end as the marvelous wonder that is medicine begins at last to work its magic in my bloodstream, gobbling up the vile germy invaders, flushing them out like the vermin they are. My head is beginning to clear slightly, and the room doesn't spin each time I move. I can take a deep breath without the air stopping dead somewhere midway between my lungs and my esophagus, or suffering paroxysms of the seal-like bark that has been masquerading as my cough. By tomorrow, I may be nearly as good as new. Already, I can feel my husband retreating to his usual safe place in the corner of daily life, the silent observer who patiently waits for all the necessities to be handled, smoothly and competently, and as they always are, by me. Sigh. It crosses my mind that perhaps one should not wait for illness to strike to allow themselves an occasional retreat from the dailiness of living. Perhaps a "me day" every so often is not out of order, a day to wander around the house in floppy yoga pants and yellow slipper socks, a day to eat only toast with honey or chocolate cake if those are the things the palate desires, a day to have an open book on every comfy chair in the house, ready to be picked up as you amble through the room, a day of not answering telephones, not paying bills, not reading the mail. A day to just be. Hmm. I think I'm on to something.