Growing up, I was the picture of health. I was a little chubby, but in a cute way that had no adverse affects on my health. I was even tall for my age. Once I hit adolescence, all that changed. Every year, I went for a physical and to get renewals on my prescription meds. Every year, a new chronic condition popped up and my list of meds grew longer and longer. For the most part, I refused to take anything but asthma medicine and Excedrin migraine because they were the only things that I absolutely had to have in order to function on a daily basis. Sure, the other meds might have made life a little more pleasant, but the costs and side effects weren’t worth it to me.
Over the past twenty years or so, I have gone through different phases of health, have taken more and less meds, and have had healthier and less healthy habits. As a teenager, I would starve myself for an entire day and reward myself with a pint of Ben & Jerry’s for dinner. As an adult, I decided to try to get a grip on my health and realized that ice cream and depression were not the best ways to do that.
So, I spent two years slowly building up a workout routine of alternating interval training with yoga/pilates. I ate very healthily. I watched my calories. I started meditating. I did my best to make sure that I got as close to eight hours of sleep a night as possible. By all accounts, I should have been the picture of health. I was actually only slightly healthier than I had been as a teenager and I still weighed alot more.
I was only working out 20 – 30 minutes a day because that was all my joints and muscles could take in the past before my arthritis would start bothering me. Thinking that I had to be healthier than I was previously, I tried working out even more. About the time I started working out for 40 minutes a day, my knee started to give out on me. I finally had to stop working out all together to let my knee heal, and I had a hard time getting back into a workout routine afterwards due to a combination of life circumstances, repeated injuries, and laziness. Here and there, I have been able to get back into good habits for a few months, but then I get sick, I injure myself, or something in life happens that throws me off my routine.
With Ben having three kids, the added issues of school-aged kids bringing home snot-filled noses keeps me sick, too. I know it’s just part of life and that I will probably stay sick until the kids get to high school. Erica is in the same boat because she has a toddler in daycare. Two of our managers have older kids and look at Erica and me with pity/gratitude/laughter because they understand exactly what we’re going through right now. Even though Erica and I constantly have runny snouts and itchy throats, we’re not getting sick in the same way. Recently, though, she came to work with the same type of cold (or whatever it is) that I always have. She happened to be going through this while I was going through one of my Wellness Weeks. Seeing her feel like that made me sad, but we also laughed about it because we kept saying exactly the same thing at exactly the same time all day. We were basically speaking in stereo. So, her Sick Brain was the equivalent of my Well Brain. Go figure!
All in all, being sick because some great kids had runny noses isn’t so bad. I try to look at it as immunity-building exercises. Lord knows playing iPhone games by myself never did anything to prevent a snotty snout anyway.