Being Sick

I like myself when I’m sick.  I don’t like to be sick.  But I’m a better person when I’m sick.  I don’t argue much.  I try to be an easy patient.  I don’t like asking for things because I don’t make a big deal over being sick.

I almost appear aloof because like my body, my mind concentrates on getting better.  Though I usually have to focus on feeling worse for a while before skipping to all the things I must ingest to get better.  It’s so easy to focus on getting better.

I’m good at that–at focusing on ridding my body of the badness than I am at connecting with, feeling, and accepting that badness.  Perhaps, for a moment, I’m closer to the basic human impulse to fall into a small space of helplessness.

I’ve been drinking everything from hibiscus tea to concoctions from a loving, older Indian couple who I met with the other day.  But no matter what I do, the cold or the virus will take whatever time it will take in me.

Being sick.  Accepting the wall that is a stuffed head, an endless stream of yuck in my nose and sinus cavity, a roll of toilet paper on my car seat just because I’d rather use that than the little nice packages of kleenex I bought to replenish things at home.

Being hot but never quite cold, seeing the look in my wife’s eyes that accuses me of doing too much when I’ve only been able to accomplish a few things well.  The swell of my head when I move too quickly, my constantly open mouth because I’d suffocate if I tried to breathe through my nose.  A penetrating glance of grace in the form of my son’s prayer and of many other people’s acts of compassion.

I hate it when I’m sick, but I am probably much closer to being right when I’m being sick.

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