Yes, I didn’t feel well when I woke up this morning. Congested to the point I was afraid to move — in the event that some breathing pathway would be further obstructed — I slept in and maintained the same dream for hours. At noon I sat up in bed, somewhat congratulatory that I’d managed some solid sleep, my accomplishment countered by a stinging thought: Why do I have to waste this day?
This much I knew: I didn’t, and I couldn’t. I set forth a mission to have what I would call The Best Sick Day Ever.
Here’s how TBSDE went. I leapt out of bed as though nothing hurt, such as: my ribs, my head, my throat, my face. I looked in the mirror. I was wearing polka dot leggings and fuzzy orange socks, and my hair was a hot mess. I decided this all made me happy, but despite it being TBSDE, I couldn’t wear this getup all day. I put on some normal human clothes, e.g. my favorite lazy sweatshirt and a down jacket (to make me feel that I was still in bed). Makeup and hair products were not applied (as TBSDE is synonymous with DGAF). I ate a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, popped an Advil and walked out the door. My destination was vaguely a coffee shop, and I decided when I accidentally started walking left instead of right, would be someplace different than I’d intended. On TBSDE, you just have to roll with it.
It was raining and, since I’d never bothered to check the forecast, I was unequipped with an umbrella. Lucky for me, I didn’t care! At a coffee shop called Sit & Wonder, I ordered a cappuccino TO STAY (gasp), which came in a ceramic mug and had pretty latte art on top of it, like all the kids take pictures of in Instagrams. I would have been satisfied ending TBSDE at this point, because I felt like a winner and had only spent $4.00 — but I had a feeling that I had more in store for me. It took me an hour and 15 minutes to drink the tiny cup of caffeine, during which I read movie reviews, scoured books, sent emails and took notes…leading me to my next stop on the TBSDE train, literally.
I literally got on the train. It was pleasantly unpacked, the opposite of my usual Tuesday train experience. I took the train to the nearest movie theater, where I did another thing I never do: Attend a matinée…alone. I bought one ticket to Gravity in 3D, a movie I’d been whining for weeks about my intentions of seeing. There were six people in the theater, and I managed to find an unobstructed seat nowhere near anyone eating popcorn — a perfect seat. I put on my 3D glasses and the next 91 minutes were spent in space with Sandra Bullock and George Clooney. Tears were shed. It. Was. Beautiful.
Walking out of the theater, I realized I was hungry — after all, it had been six hours since I’d had that peanut butter and jelly sandwich for “breakfast.” Deciding to further continue my streak of amazingness that was TBSDE, I made my way to Chuko, one of my favorite restaurants in Brooklyn. If I’d made it this far out of my bed today and accomplished so many fabulous things, it would be a damn shame if ramen didn’t make the cut.
In a matter of 20 minutes I was sitting over a bowl of ramen and a beer, feeling incredibly incredible. I slurped down every noodle, and when the kind waitress handed me my check, I smiled at the realization that she’d quietly left off my beer. TBSDE. I wiped my eye and realized that Gravity tears were still crusted in the corners.
But why stop there? I walked to a bookstore down the street, the kind with a crisp selection of new and used books and creaky wood floors. I looked at books for an hour, I bought a gift, and I walked home quietly in the rain. A block from my apartment I passed a neighbor that I frequently see, and he enthusiastically acknowledged me with a “Good morning I MEAN EVENING…wow!” which made us both laugh.
* * *
On Saturday and Sunday mornings I have a certain mindset. I wake up as early as possible, jump out of bed and get my day started, and realizing the value of weekends, try not to waste any time. For 48 hours I can do what I want, from bike rides to coffee to manicures, and it’s the highlight of my week.
I turned today into a weekend day, and it turned out to be the best thing. I felt better immediately just by not wallowing in my bed — and by doing things I never do.
Am I still sick? Yes. But the high of today has me feeling mighty fine. TBSDE.