Raise your hand if you’ve NEVER, not even once, called in sick to work or school when you’re weren’t technically sick. Anyone? Anyone? (I didn’t think so.)
Back before I was a bridgetender, I pretty much hated every job I had. And I called in sick a lot. Of course, I was younger then, and believed I could get another job quickly and easily, even if I pushed my luck. It also never occurred to me that catastrophic health problems could ever be in my future, and that it might be a good idea to hoard my sick days.
But every once in a while, you just need a break. You know? (Of course you do.)
I think the need for mental health days has increased over time. The world is just too crowded and there’s too much information flying at us from every direction. The pressure is building. It becomes increasingly impossible to keep up, emotionally, financially, politically, and culturally.
Sometimes you just need to push the reset button. Sneak out and see a movie. Or sleep in and hug your dog. Or take a walk in the woods. Or read a good book.
And that’s okay. If you checking out for just one day means the world will stop spinning, then you seriously need to learn how to delegate. Just sayin’.
A friend of mine posted a meme on Facebook that said, “If ‘Plan A’ doesn’t work, the alphabet has 25 more letters! Stay cool.”
My response to that was, “I think I’m on Plan Q.”
And it’s true. My life has been a never-ending series of do overs; a veritable cornucopia of screw ups and bad choices as a centerpiece in a virtual Thanksgiving feast of innocent and/or stupid mistakes.
The fact that I’ve hit the reset button so many times is probably why so many of my loved ones think I’m strong. To that I say, “piffle waffle.” “Try, try again” isn’t a sign of nobility or power. It’s a sign that you have been left with no other alternative.
Giving up is not really an option. Sure, you can curl up in a fetal position with the sheets pulled up over your head for a while, but eventually you’re going to get hungry. You’re going to have to do something. Withering up and dying is a long, nasty, painful process, and one that takes an astonishing level of stubbornness.
So, yeah, I’m on Plan Q, if I haven’t lost count. And I’ve no doubt there will be a Plan R in the near future. That’s life.