Sick Day

December 8, 2010

Today’s a sick day for me.

Now, I haven’t called in sick on this blog in over two years.  And I don’t plan to start now.

But it was kind of funny how I felt great all day, until I stepped into my car for the 30 minute drive home.  Then, I suddenly felt, exhausted, nauseated, and kind of drunk.  And my skin hurts now.  Ow, ow, ow…that was my skin.

My wife is one of those people who loves liesure time.  She works hard, and craves a block of time to do nothing.

I, on the other hand, while I enjoy time off, have a really hard time really embracing it.  Doing…nothing…for an extended period of time?  Sounds…wrong.  It’s hard for me to disconnect from the electronics while on vacation.  It’s hard to leave work at work.  It’s hard to give my undivided attention to my wife when I come home.

And I feel like I get these 24 hour bugs every now and again, just to make me stop.  I had all these plans for productivity yesterday evening and today.  I didn’t get one thing done.  I slept…and complained to my wife.  Complaining is probably my favorite sick day activity.  I’m almost sad when I get better and my wife doesn’t listen to my pleas for help anymore.

I definately do not embrace the Sabbath day ideal of doing nothing.  It sounds weird to ask people at church what they’re doing Sunday afternoon, and say I’m doing nothing.  Nothing is wrong, it’s un-Protestant.  I think there was something about that Protestant work ethic that built the country.  Great, so now America is counting on me to keep moving.  I’m letting America down.

It’s hard for me to remember that we were created to sleep a third of our lives away, and rest another day of the week, and take a bunch of time off for holidays.  We have to cancel plans for the weather.  So today, my mind is rebelling, as I struggle to form a coherant thought, forcing me to stop, to realize that those things I want to do can wait, to let the earth keep moving without me.

Are you the kind of person who’s always on the go without stopping, or do you crave that time to do nothing?  Do you try to tough out a sick day, or do you turn into a blubbering pile of mush at the first sign of the sniffles?

27 responses to Sick Day

  1. I tend to be one who is always on the go. Although I do enjoy slowing down enough to work on a jigsaw puzzle (insider winter activity since I can’t ride my bike). I do try to tough out a sick day when I get one. My wife works so there is no one home to complain to anyway so it isn’t any fun. Hope you get to feeling better. :)

  2. I can do nothing. But I also tough out my illnesses. Because by golly, if I’m going to do nothing, I want to be healthy enough to enjoy it.
    Su recently posted..Sorta Like Sprinting

  3. Matt, it seems you are a person who should learn to sit quietly before the Lord, and to take to heart the “day of rest.” We cannot hear God if we are always busy.

  4. Man I hate being sick, and I hate not having anything to do. Last night, when my blogging was done, real work was done (Navy instructor), Facebook was updated, and the kids were in bed, I found myself pacing, not knowing what to do. I go absolutely insane. I was raised in a culture where not having something to do was “burning daylight” and I guess it has stuck to me. That doesn’t always mean I’m productive, just busy.

  5. Are you the kind of person who’s always on the go without stopping, or do you crave that time to do nothing?
    I guess that depends on how you define “nothing.” Doing nothing the way my wife means it, is to tighty up the house and pick up things. Weird, I know.

    For me, doing nothing means playing PS3 or watching a blu ray movie.

    I’m generally okay with a cough and the sniffles. BUT…if my body starts to get that ache-y feeling. I’m doing for. I pop dayquil and drink nyquil like you wouldn’t believe. It’s great now because at my job we can work from home on such occasions. They’re big on not getting other people sick.

    But I feel the same way, in that sometimes I think getting sick is a way for us to slow our bodies down.
    Jonathan Chang recently posted..242 Hating on Jay-Z

  6. Are you the kind of person who’s always on the go without stopping, or do you crave that time to do nothing?
    I was for a long time. I was a 7-day-a-week CEO of a fast growing Internet company. I am the type that can always seem to fit in another request. I am very scheduled during the work week.

    My wife is the opposite. If there is one more thing to do, she just needs more time.

    Since I turned 50, I have a new saying. “I don’t need more to do.” I am trying to find creative ways to be there for my family, write a blog and play in a band – and find nothing to do but enjoy the sun or a walk on the beach. Oh and work be gone 50+ hours a wek.

    I am recording a new CD that basically is entitled, 10 minutes for folks that don’t have time for God. It’s a 10 minute track with a narrated prayer or Bible verse followed by some meditative music.

    Do you try to tough out a sick day, or do you turn into a blubbering pile of mush at the first sign of the sniffles?
    I never missed a day of work for 15 years. I did however; have some days I felt so good that I called sick to enjoy the day. My last company was European and we had a lot of time off.

    I did have some cold symptoms a few days ago, but before I could start complaining, my friend with cancer texted me to ask for prayer for pain.

    A few years ago someone asked me if I was a 9 Commandment Christian? Although I realize the Sabbath is an issue of the heart, I will never work another Sunday. It is a day for me to worship, be with family and get a little down time.

    Hope you feel better, Matt.
    David recently posted..Its Here! – My Mini-Book on How the Church is Really Supposed to Work!

  7. I completely understand how getting sick is a major interuption in my mind-set. Doing nothing seems to be impossible. What does one do when they do nothing? Watch TV? Listen to music? Cruise the internet? That’s all something. And I don’t think the Sabbath is meant to be a day in which one sits and stares at the wall. But I’m sure that napping is a completely holy activity.

    Hope you are feeling better.
    Phil Appling recently posted..Real men dont iron womens clothes!

  8. I’m a big baby when I’m sick too. I almost never complain about anything…until I get sick. Then I turn into a toddler that can’t do anything for himself. It’s the only time I get to do it…so I take advantage.
    Tony Alicea recently posted..On Perspective

  9. I hate feeling sick. When you’re laying on the couch cheering on Judge Judy, seems you’re almost at eye level with the dust bunnies. Then I feel guilty about being sick and think I should be vacuuming or doing something else productive. That’s why I like surgery. Then you officially have a doctor ORDERING you to do absolutely nothing – sometimes not even bathe – for a period of time. You just can’t beat that!

  10. I definitely need down time. If I’m on the go for too long, people (especially my husband) start avoiding me! I need time to sit and think and process life in the presence of God. I need to be quiet so I can listen, or everything I’m doing becomes my own, rather than His.

    I have learned (the hard way) to pray before committing to anything, to keep white space on my schedule, to welcome quiet, to aim for quality rather than quantity, to be willing to be interrupted by the Holy Spirit.

    I don’t know if it’s connected or not, but I hardly ever get sick.

  11. I’m an introvert, so I love my downtime. I’m actually battling a cold right now, and wish I could just zone out and watch movies. Sadly, I have to write a paper involving Protestant activism and America’s founding (no, really, I do.)

    I do think a little sickness now and then is a good thing spiritually – it reminds how fragile we are and how things are not in our control. It forces us to rely on the kindness of others. The year I had to drop out of college to recuperate from a chronic illness was the best thing that ever happened to me. It brought my relationship with God to a new level, and made me rethink my priorities. Although I did get sick of watching tv in sweatpants all the time.
    Sarah recently posted..Museums in movies- When In Rome

  12. I have 5 young children–it’s awfully hard to stop, wait, and rest when so many want so much of me.
    seekingpastor recently posted..I’m Not With The Band

  13. I heard a good definition of the Sabbath. “Doing whatever it takes to keep your mind off of working.” For some it is sleeping or reading a book. For others it is a 10 mile hike. One is done lazily and the other is really exerting. But both kept the peson’s mind off of working. so it is a sabbath for them!
    jay sauser recently posted..…jake’s painful journey…

  14. Ugh…I hate being sick. I don’t sick often but when I do I get SICK. Of course, I’m someone who hates not “doing” something too so I’m sure my sicknesses come from running myself ragged.

    Get better soon bro!
    Jason recently posted..I’m proud to call myself a Christian

  15. May I suggest the book “The Rest of God” by Mark Buchanan? It’s an insightful and challenging book on reclaiming Sabbath rest. Might help you shed some of that guilt of the American work ethic ;) It did for me, anyway. Just a thought :)
    Angela H. recently posted..A post

  16. I just had my thyroid removed and spent three weeks in bed (well not all in bed). The third week was the prime week for rest and relaxation, since the first two were full of pain and discomfort. It was sweet to have my wife and daughters wait on me! They are awesome!
    Rocco recently posted..The Summit- Faith Beyond Everest’s Death Zone

  17. I with you, Matt. It takes nausea, dizzines or unbearable pain to send me to bed or the couch for an extended period of time of doing “nothing.” I will work through almost anything else.

    My husband? Exact opposite.

    Feel better soon!
    Heather Sunseri recently posted..Because God Loves Us- Not Because He Was Supposed To…

  18. Hey, Matt!

    First time commentor, short time reader (Heh heh). I started reading your blog while researching to start my own. Love the stuff, bro!

    Anyway, I personally take a day every week with no radio in the car, and at least once every three months a youth pastor friend and I take groups out into the wilderness in which we greatly enjoy not having the electronics with us! It feels great to “not do” or “not think” in the busy sense. We find our greatest inspiration and refuelings (as well as being able to hear God moments) come when we are able to shut off and get away (even if it is only in the car alone on the way home or sitting in the bedroom with everything off).

    One of the hardest things for me was a few years back when I actually (gasp!) shut of the radio for five minutes! I was one of those always going, always listening/watching something, always talking people. Now I find it a lot easier to stop and listen to Him at any time!

  19. You should read “When I Relax, I Feel Guilty”. I’m a gifted relax-er. When I’m sick, there is no question that I will immediately put on my pyjamas and burrow under a pile of blankets. (No whining here. I’m grateful for any day off I can get.) I believe in the healing power of rest. I’m also a fanatic when it comes to fun. Give me a beach to walk on or a book to read. Unlike my husband, I do not keep a “to-do list” of chores in my head. Productivity versus fun and relaxation (or just rest, as is the case when you’re sick), I choose the latter every time!

  20. I love down time and quiet contemplation by nature. Unfortunately since my husband became seriously ill, I’ve been working 70 plus hours a week trying to make enough. I can’t really afford sick days or time off. Living this way seems so foreign to me. When I do have down time though, I’m so incredibly thankful for it. I do end up feeling kind of strange though, since I’m so out of practice. That’s the problem with being self employed… you have a slave driver for a boss.
    Linda B. recently posted..What I Think About Late at Night…

  21. I never get sick. It’s a perk of having “strong genes” (at least according to my mother). Plus, I used to work at a church with a workaholic pastor, which made it even tougher to take a sabbath. So I’m kinda in the same boat… I work, even when I’m sick, even on my day off… I know I shouldn’t, but I do.
    SethC recently posted..Courage

  22. Before last night I went something like 3.5-4 days on about 15-18 hours of sleep. I think that says it all right there. I go until I crash. I also super multi task…
    Jason recently posted..Christians-Should We Vote