It's no secret that I'm sick. Maybe it is to you but that wasn't on purpose. It shouldn't be. I'm in a fever dream. I'm not in control of myself--in a lot of ways, today.
There's something about getting sick that feels like defeat and that's the worst part. It's like a sucker punch that delivers certain death to your pride and once it's gone, there's no sense in attempting modesty or humanity. You just lay down and beg to die and hope you're not alone when it happens. Here's how it went for me.
I woke up on Sunday morning feeling fine. I bounded out of bed , I washed my face, I ate my Cap'n Crunch and I made a lot of headway on a writing project. I was feeling good. I got in the car with Sarah and Nickie and we drove to Hutch. At one point we split directions in the mall. They went to Payless and I went to the calendar store where all the planners were 50% off. I got a Charley Harper planner for just over $7.00 (it could have been the highlight of my day). Anyway, as I walked into the store my head started pounding immediately. It was as if my brains just started noticing my heart beat and turned up the volume to alert me and say, "What is this?!" But just as suddenly as it began, it ended. "Oh, sorry. Yeah, I know what that is. Sorry for the alarm." I was shaken, and woozy but I wasn't really bothered. I found my planner, I met my friends. We left.
We decided to get something to drink before leaving town and as we sat in Starbucks I could feel myself getting progressively worse and worse. I was rapidly becoming this illness' bitch. Every five minutes was worse than the previous. This was alarming. By the end of the 30 minute drive home, I was laying in the back seat moaning like a weirdo at every bump in the road. So I crawled up my stairs, laid in my bed and missed "Christmas on January 2nd" with my mom and her boyfriend and all of my nieces and nephews. They delivered a bowl of soup and my Christmas present. I was too weak to open it. I made Andrew do it. I wept over my wimpiness. When Libby gets sick, things get unreasonable.
This is how I know for certain that I am sick and not that I am simply not feeling well. When I am sick, I cry all the time. All the time. For any reason.
- My iTunes list went from playing Coconut Records to Colbie Caillat. Why, God, why?
- I woke up and realized that I was still wearing shoes and jeans and that I would have to get out of bed in order to change into flannel pants. Pants! I don't understand your lack of pity!
- I looked in the bathroom mirror. Who could ever love me?!
- My cat stepped on the controls for my electric blanket and turned it off in the middle of the night. Give me a break, would you?!
Next up is the issue of calling in sick. It's the worst. I hate it. I wake up in the morning and I think, "No, I'm fine. I can totally go to work today. Here's to health!" And then I stand up and fall back down and realize that in my slumber all of my muscles were replaced with spaghetti noodles and my brain weighs thirty six pounds. So I lay in bed to gather my courage to stand up again and I use the wall to get me to the bathroom where it's made perfectly clear that I am incapable of caring for myself. I contemplate getting one of those stools for the shower. Extra hand rails. I'll never leave my home again. Except... I have about 1/2 a roll of toilet paper left and decisions are going to have to be made at some point.
When you finally decide to go ahead and inform your employer that you're never going to leave your apartment again it's always when you're at your absolute worst. In my case it was just after a pitiful collapse into a crumpled, sobbing heap between my bed and the wall. I sent a pathetic text message. I waited for motivation to get off the floor--that took a few minutes.
I don't know if you can relate to me at all but I always feel a teensy bit better right after calling in and then I'm riddled with guilt for the rest of the day and I wonder if I'm playing hookie. Any small measure of progress makes me feel like I could have gone to work. The voices say, "Look at yourself, you made it to the kitchen and microwaved a cup of water and successfully carried it back to your room. What makes you think you couldn't go to work? She's a liar." I forget that it took three tries to get out of bed and then after I got back in, I discovered that I forgot an important component in making a cup of tea and I'm too washed out to go back for it so I'm sitting in bed drinking what is quickly becoming a mug of tepid water.
I even feel guilty for being on Facebook and for writing this blog post despite the fact that it requires little more than finger movements and little muscle control.
Update: This is helpful. I will link you to this http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com/2010/02/boyfriend-doesnt-have-ebola-probably.html and tell you that I am currently rolling at a solid 4 but last night there was some 7 happening in my life.