Taking it easy is one of the nice aspects of being sick. However, completely resting is difficult for me. I almost always have to accomplish something. Yes, I know, it’s a bit odd and not necessarily the most helpful quirk, but honestly, I’d go stir-crazy lying in bed all day. Last year, I let myself watch TV when I had the flu, but beyond that, I use the time when I’m sick to get a little extra work done on writing. So, since cleaning, playing games with the kids, and running errands makes me feel worse, I sit down with a bottle of water and whatever book I’m working on at the time and let myself escape into the world of storytelling.
Strange things happen when I’m sick. First of all, my grammar and spelling become nearly as strange as they were when I was in elementary school if I’m not extra careful. (That’s one reason I always ask my husband to look over my blogs before I post them.) But my creativity also increases. Actually, I think this is more a result of not having the energy to censor myself and worry over every idea I come up with. My ideas pass from my brain onto the page without the normal filter.
Really, it’s amazing how certain natural states of life lower inhibitions. I also have to be careful I don’t just say what pops into my head when I’m sick. When I’m feeling particularly awful, I’m not always the most patient or pleasant. But on the flipside, I’m also more likely to feel like snuggling up to my husband and enjoying be taken care of. In that state, I’m more likely to say the “I love yous” and other sweet things.
Reading, on the other hand becomes a little more challenging. I find it harder to focus. Though, the analytical part of my brain also doesn’t edit as much. If a book is truly engrossing, it can transport me for a brief time away from congestion, headaches, fever, or whatever I happen to have at the time, but it has to be a pretty good book for that.
For me, the opportunity to devote more time to writing, one of the great passions of my life, helps alleviate the frustrating and unpleasant nature of being sick.
What helps you tolerate those sick days?