On Working From Home While Sick…

I just followed up a really great and tiring long weekend with three days (so far) of being sick.

I’ll preface this discussion by saying, I rarely get sick. And then I moved to New York City. I had to take a few sick days last year (something I NEVER did at any part-time job), and I’ve taken two this year. One was in January when I was 90% sure I had strep throat (the doctor said otherwise, but then again I had to wait a few days to see him. I still think I had it during that time), and today for the freakin’ common cold.

I never get colds, I get “sinus issues.” My nose runs, my throat hurts, I get pressure in my head, and it’s gone in a day. I woke up Monday feeling like crap and blamed it on the weather. And then yesterday I woke up feeling worse and weak and could not stop sneezing. I knew I hadn’t suddenly developed some crazy allergy, but WebMD did tell me I have the common cold. For once it didn’t tell me I was going to die.

So when I woke up and got ready today feeling like death, I knew it was time to stay home before I got the whole office sick. I also had a boatload of work to do.

I went back to bed for awhile to the discontent of my cat who loves routines, like me waking up at 7, but definitely needed that extra hour and a half. Then I made a to-do list on my computer and got to work.

Working form home has always sounded ideal to me. I don’t have to worry about getting to or from work, I get to be comfortable, I could work out if I wanted to (not when I’m sick, obviously), my phone isn’t constantly ringing…and as I daydream about this I always think, “nah I’ll never get anything done like that, I’ll eat my weight in junk and just be on Facebook all day.”

Seriously, I’ve never been so productive. Seriously! First of all, I didn’t turn the TV on at all, just had some music on while I read through articles for a newsletter. No one was calling me, I was able to focus on one thing at a time, the lighting in my apartment is much better than the fluorescent stuff that’s prevalent in every office…it was perfect. Granted, there are certain things that I can only do at my office, like submitting invoices and whatnot, but those things that I never made it off my to-do list earlier this week? Done!

I learned a few things about myself today. For one, I don’t have ADD. Sometimes with everything going on in an office, I feel like I don’t actually have the capacity to focus on one thing at a time. But with all the distractions that my own apartment can tempt me with, I was able to put it all aside and just get things done. I also learned that I can get more done while not feeling stressed out. When I am stressed out, I hide it because who wants to work with the girl that’s freaking out? No one. But hiding it doesn’t help either. What I need to do from here on out is just take a deep breath and prioritize. Sometimes that means rearranging my to-do list to accommodate new projects, and that’s ok.

I also learned that sick days as an adult are completely different from sick days during school. Despite how crappy I feel, I knew I couldn’t just let everything slide today. I couldn’t sit around watching Spongebob all morning…ok, so I did watch SOME Spongebob, but what’s a sick day without cartoons? At least I didn’t take an hour break at 11 am to catch The Price is Right.

I suppose the overarching lesson here is that when you actually stop and look at yourself, you realize how much you’ve grown. I’ve always felt like a little kid that’s younger than everyone around me, and who doesn’t look my age (this past weekend someone guessed it at 21…they were three years off). I suppose this is part of being the baby of the family, but another part of it is not believing I’m actually an adult now, I guess? But then I have days like today where I’m super responsible and I realize, yeah, I actually am one! I mean, I even made myself a full dinner from my new Giada book (with lunch for the next two days) and cleaned out my fridge. I did, however, neglect the laundry for another day.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to finally get some rest, catch up on some New Girl and perhaps binge watch the last season of Mad Men. Anyone else stoked for April 7th?

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