The rattling sound in my chest is an inescapable reminder that I am still sick. That coupled with the fact that I could pass for James Earl Jones on the phone have steered me from my objective of getting back to work and led me right back to my couch.
I have never in my working life called in sick to just have a day off. I would never have been able to enjoy a day knowing that my colleagues were doing extra duties to cover my work load because I had lied about my health to have a day of leisure. Even when I am sick, I have a hard time not going to work. But this time I didn’t have a choice – this flu kicked my butt.
I worked a few hours on the morning of the 30th and went back in for a few hours on the 31st but my road paved with good intentions quickly became the road home and I spend the next two and a half days curled in the fetal position in my living room praying for the coughing to stop. I’m not a whiny sick person but whatever this bug was proved that even the strongest people can revert to child-like behavior when they don’t feel like themselves.
Today, after feeling a tremendous amount of guilt for missing so much work, I dragged myself out of bed and made a valiant effort to forget that I am still sick. I was shocked to open the door to a temperature of -34C. After only a few seconds of vehement debate, my car turned over and I was on my way to the lodge. I was greeted warmly by my coworkers until I opened my mouth and spoke a few words. Their smiles turned to looks of fear and, as they backed further away from me, they all told me to go home.
As much guilt as I feel for not being able to perform my job, my bosses and fellow employees made me see that I was doing them more of an disservice by being there and possibly spreading my germs. Although I am past the contagious stage, I quickly heeded their advice and am now curled up on my couch once again with three layers of blankets and a hot cup of tea.
On a side note: I should have realized how severe this flu was when I discovered I haven’t had coffee in four days!!