Twice this year I’ve been sick.
And by “sick”, I mean fetal-position-on-the-bathroom-floor, puking-while-driving-(twice), can’t-watch-food-commercials sick.
I guess this was life’s payback for years of bragging that I never get sick. Lesson learned.
And while I typically enjoy the perks of living on my own (notably: no one judges the amount of ice cream I eat, I don’t share a bathroom, and no one cares that my bed is not made), being sick when you live on your own sucks.
You have to crawl out of bed to get your own glass of water.
You must have all the Tylenol, Gravol and Nyquil in stock (and not expired…that’s a thing) because a quick drugstore run takes the same amount of stamina as a half marathon.
You have no one to commiserate with you, only you feel sorry for yourself.
You have to gauge the seriousness of your own symptoms, asking yourself questions like “Am I normally this shade of grey?” and “Does this level of shivering and sweating constitute a fever?”
(Side note: I don’t own a thermometer because I thought that was something you only did if you have children living in your house. My doctor and a few friends assured me adults take their temperature occasionally too. I did not know this.)
But here’s the thing. When you tell people you’re sick, they care that you’re sick.
They check in to make sure you’re still functioning somewhere in the “alive” zone.
They go to the pharmacy to pick up your prescription for you and also get you Gatorade and Lipton chicken noodle soup.
They offer to come clean your kitchen and wash your sheets.
They keep their phone close by overnight in case you need them to drive 40 minutes to take you to the hospital that’s three minutes away.
They offer to come sit in your living room while you shower, in the event that you blackout and fall.
They make sure you’re following doctor’s orders, even when you think you’re feeling better.
They feel sorry for you and say “this sucks so much” and “I wish I could make it better” and “wow, you really do look terrible”.
If you were to tell teenager Lindsay that she’d be living on her own in her 30’s, I think that’d be hard for her to hear. But I hope you’d also tell her that she’d be very happy and supported and taken care of. Because that’s so sweetly true.