Wednesday, October 20, 2010

How long until your guilt-o-meter starts ticking?

Apparently, mine can hold out for about three days.

On any given week, I've got at least four projects on the go. Big projects - like novels, or a cross stitch (yes, a cross stitch!), or a new proposal of some sort.

This in addition to my long To-Do list. The kind that is never fully realized because I add a few new things a day. Like making cookies for handsome hubby, or washing the dogs, or organizing the hall closet...

I'm not whining. Truthfully, I accept this "take on everything" attitude as one of my many character flaws. My family accepts it as well, and when I'm not racing around doing something, my husband and stepdaughter are scratching their heads wondering if I'm ok.

I haven't been ok for the last week-ish. A massive head cold left me bed ridden for two whole days where I could not read, or write - heck, I could barely breathe. By the third day, I could keep my eyes open for long enough to finish reading a book and start another. I even wrote a blog post.

I took those three days in stride, accepting that my superwoman cape was at the dry cleaners and I had no choice but to suck it up. No choice but to relax. Handsome hubby fed me chicken noodle soup. Awesome stepdaughter made me smoothies. I caught up on soap operas. And only thought about what I should be doing once....or twice.

But it's day four now and I'm still feeling like crap.

The guilt-o-meter kicked in about midnight last night. Which is when I realized there was a pile of laundry in the corner of my bedroom. Which made me think about the two bathrooms that could use some TLC since my Sunday routine was interrupted by the cold. Which of course reminded me that the carpets needed vacuuming.

As expected, my mind didn't stop stressing over unfinished housework. It moved on to the day job(s) tasks sitting in wait, coupled with a few contract assignments that are creeping up on deadline. I thought about the cross stitch I'm trying to finish for my stepmom for Christmas, and how I promised my stepdaughter I'd help her with a short story she has to write.

And finally, I started thinking about my writing.

As I wrote the e-mail to my boss this morning explaining that I simply couldn't muster up the energy to make it in quite yet, that guilt etched up my throat and gave me a stomach ache of extraordinary proportions. I *should* be at work. And if not at work, shouldn't I be puttering around the house tidying, or better yet, cleaning with purpose?

The To-Do list started small, a few things to curb the guilt (like make cookies), but in 10 minutes it morphed into something massive - a glaring reminder of everything I'm missing by not being healthy. Not just work, and writing and house cleaning,! All three classes today...

Alas, it would take a miracle for me to feel well enough to attend dance tonight - and even if I did feel better, guilt wouldn't allow me to leave the house.

Instead, I'm sipping on orange juice, eating chicken noodle soup and staring at a To-Do list just keeps growing and....

Sigh. Ok. Maybe I am whining a little.

How about you? How many days can you stay home sick before you start stressing about what isn't getting done? And how do you curb the feeling of guilt?


  1. None. I'm stressed about not getting enough done when I'm not sick! When I am, well I usually make myself worse by still trying to get it all done.

  2. After a few days of doing nothing I'm feeling out of sorts. But getting better is a priority if you ever want to tackle that to-do list! I'm trying to picture you cross stitching while busing a gansta move!

  3. IIIIIII... feel absolutely NO guilt for being sick. I think you're just crazy! <3

  4. If I'm home sick, I'm too miserable to think about the things that aren't getting done. If my mind starts wandering to the stuff I need to do (at home or work) I'm usually well enough to go do it.

  5. No guilt at being sick. No guilt at no housework/blahblahblah whatsoever.
    However, I do reach a point ( approx. day two) where I get super pissed at being sick. And I stay mad till I get better. lol

    hang in, screw the housework and everything else ..
    just . get. better.

  6. Love of lifetime.... Yes this is you. You're so amazing all your hard work for our family is greatly appreciated!!!! I would be lost without you. Thanks for being so strong sick and all I'm so in love with you.

  7. No dance classes until you feel better! Trust me, we are of the same breed, and as much as us "take on anything and everything" gals push we need to realize when we need to take a break for our health. If we don't then we, break. Been there, done that last spring, not fun, will not repeat. Please get better and try not to feel guilty.

    And besides you probably accomplish in one day as much as many people accomplish in one week, so you get at least a week of guilt free sick time.

  8. You take all the time you need to feel better!! I hope you get to pick up your Super Woman cape at the dry cleaners real soon :)

  9. CANDY - I figured YOU would say that. We seem to be a lot alike.

    JAN - LOL. That does conjure up a certain hilarious image :-)

    KYLE - I KNEW you would say that...

    VICKI - good point, and pretty much why I hauled my sick butt to work this morning.

    JAMIE - Hm. I forgot to mention the "being pissed at being sick" phase, which does, like you, happen at about Day 2. I'm not 100% but pissed enough to come in today. xo

    HUSBAND - you make me melt. That is all <3

    JESS - blech. Hate missing dance. Not going to be there tonight either. Will get back into it next week. Best to be 100%, me thinks.

    SS - oh how I have missed you. You're so sweet :-) Cape is at dry cleaners still, but found a ratty one that will get me through the day.

  10. Okay, repeat after me: Housework can wait. When you get to it, it will be the same amount of work no matter what, and just as clean afterward, so putting it off a few days is A-OKAY.

    I really hope you feel back to yourself again soon! (and don't push too hard, too fast--allow some recovery)

  11. HART - where were you YESTERDAY when the guilt was so consuming, I succumbed? And because I was well enough to clean, I figure I'm well enough to go to the day job. So, here I am :-) Seriously though, thanks. I'm not fully better, but I'm no longer wishing for death...

  12. Hey! When was the last time you RESTED. Cut yerself some slack sweetie! <3

  13. Thanks, DONNA. I did rest, but I'm happy to be back into the swing of things. I Miss you <3