Cough....

I'd like to share an epiphany. I was going to write a blog earlier this week about how one of the benefits of being a "working Mom" is that when you do stay home from work because you, yourself (as opposed to your kids) are sick, people take it seriously and let you rest.

This is what I started to write:

Yesterday I was talking with my 13 year old buddy CM that being a stay-at-home Mom sometimes sucks because you can't really take a sick day. Her mom works full time in banking and rarely gets sick (they have good antibodies). I explained that when someone who works gets sick enough to stay in bed, it is expected that they stay in bed, or at least, horizontal. When you are at home all the time, it is assumed that you can spend your days napping at leisure, so why get sick?


But for a stay-at-homer, a long weekend plus a snow-day is overtime. My husband went into work and left me to deal with the injured dog and kids-play dates on the snow day. Not to mention laundry, grocery shopping and the aforementioned soup-making. Granted I could have opened a can of Campbells and proclaim dinner served, but I felt they needed a real meal...and I craved home-made food.

You get the gist of it. 

I realized that this isn't true. We, collectively as women, have been socialized that everyone else comes first. Perhaps, YOU, my reader (male or female, working/not) have no problem cuddling under a duvet when you are ill. Maybe it's specifically me? I'm the daughter of Gloria-don't cry-for-me-Argentina-martyr-syndrome. Maybe it's rubbed off? No matter what your age, your parenting status or your income, maybe you know better! If you are sick, sleep is the best medicine. Why should *I* be the martyr?

And I shouldn't! Last night as I truly believed I may cough up a lung, I had a revelation: If I'd stayed in bed for the first few days of this cold and slept it off, I could have been well already.

Instead I acted as if I were perfectly fine and now I'm paying the price. If martyrdom = illness. Time for healing = health.

Lesson learned. Today I slept late, and the kids managed to get themselves to school without my supervision. I didn't do anything stressful today (I didn't nap either, though). And while I didn't exactly order in, dinner is very easy-peasy. It's good to be needed, but it's acceptable to take care of myself first sometimes.

Just as we learn every time we get on an airplane. Adults sometimes need to get their own oxygen before they can assist others. A most important lesson!

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