Be Where Your Butt is Sick Day

My life is busy. Two kids under the age of six. My wife and I both work full time. Swimming lessons, homework and running the day to day of a busy house doesn’t leave much time for sitting around.

I like it. I’m not much for sitting around. But sometimes, as they say, the universe has other plans.

A chest cold subdued me into a fog, not to mention the inability to sleep through the night because of wheezing tight chest. Okay, enough of the details. What I’m saying is that I was forced to stay home from work yesterday.

Sure I could have doped up with some over-the-counter medications, but there is a reason for sick days. I find it’s a courtesy to take them, keeping the junk from spreading around the office, and providing a time to get extra sleep and rest and (hopefully) kick the cold faster.

So my yesterday was filled with a half-gallon of orange juice mixed with soda water, a remote and a box of tissues:

sick day

And to be honest, it was hard to do. I found myself constantly wanting to pickup the kids’ toys, check work email or brainstorm projects that I should/could be working, despite the cough and congestion sounding like a life-long smoker.

There’s a commercial out there (and I’ll spare you the video link) where the dad sticks his head into his crying kid’s room and all stuffed up and baggy eyed, says, “I’m gonna need to take a sick day today.” The truth is in parenthood there really aren’t any sick days. (Okay, here’s the video if you must.)

I still had to get up and bring my daughter to daycare, so the house could be quiet and and my effort towards relaxing could commence. And then swing by the grocery store, so I could pickup tissue and orange juice. Oh, and we needed milk.

Busy is a mindset to cram as much into the day as possible. Which may not be a bad thing according to this Fast Company article, referencing a study showing a correlation between busyness healthy cognition, especially as people age. But I wonder about physical health?

Countless times have I had to take a walk or exercise because of the feeling of overwhelm. It’s no surprise to me then that feeling pressed for time can have harmful consequences such as poorer health, trouble sleeping, and depression. Hence the cold I’m suffering from.

I’ll try to remember that next time I’m about to say, “I just can’t get it all done.” The trick–I hear anyway–is to “be where your feet are.” Or in my case when home sick, be where my butt is. The classic idea that the only time we really have is right now.

When my five-year-old son stays home with a fever from school, he’s not wondering what needs to be done. He’s either napping or relaxing in front of a TV show. This thought alone, helped me stay away (mostly) from work email and get a nap in.

Here’s to good heath for you and your family.

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