Winter Travel. Winter travel on an airplane. Winter travel on an airplane with a guy hacking up a lung two rows back.

Yep, I got sick recently from the guy two rows back. I’m positive it was his fault. More about him later. My recent bout with pneumonia (I was hospitalized for 48 hours) got me thinking about general negative attitudes about admitting we are sick and then doing what we need to do when we get sick.

What happened to taking a day or two off to recover?

The over the counter remedies are nothing compared to staying home, drinking plenty of fluids, hot toddies and gargling with salt water. Add in boxes of tissues, hot baths and soap operas during the day and we are usually good to go. Of course we have the super bugs, the new flu strains and such.

But, what I am most interested in knowing is this: why don’t you stay home and not infect everyone else? Are you scared your boss will get mad? Are you too important that nothing will get done in your absence? I rant, but, I too, fell prey to these emotions. How could a nutrition and wellness coach get pneumonia, let alone get pneumonia AND have to be hospitalized and put on oxygen. What? Am I too important, too irreplaceable that I can’t get sick? OMG! I am not in control of my body!

So as I recover at home, I am no longer afraid to tell people I have pneumonia. I am giving away tickets to shows that I had planned, saying no to invites for lunch, reaching out to my clients to arrange our meetings for a week from now, and, as the doctor said, taking it easy. I have accepted that on the one hand I have to take it easy for while and can’t exercise for a few weeks. On the other hand, I am way better than I was two weeks ago. This could happen to anyone. I am going to be fine.

Moral of the story: Listen to your body

Sometimes, your body says, nope, this one is going to bite you in the ass and put you down for a few days, maybe even weeks. The world, your world, isn’t going to stop if you check out for a while. Everyone will still think you are amazing. Everything will be the same when you return. And because you take good care of yourself, your recovery will be that much quicker. You just have to be a “patient” patient.

As far as the guy on the plane who infected me and probably most of the cabin we were in … you taught me a good lesson. Hope you feel better.

If you want further reading on this subject, check out this book: “The Art of Being Ill” by Jill Sinclair

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