Today is a Saturday; the final “free” Saturday of this school year, I might add. For it is the Saturday after the final exam week and before the internship period starts, which will fill up the remainder of my second year.
And yet, on this sunny, warm, happy Saturday, I am completely bedridden with a nasty case of the flu. It is day 3 now, for those who are counting. While I see the Instagram stories of my classmates traveling, going out, eating the best food, I can only wonder if my bowl of soup for the day will “sit right”. Quite the contrast, if I do say so myself.
On this not-too-happy Saturday, all I have been thinking about is the upcoming week. On Monday, I am supposed to meet up with a group of volunteers who are going to support elementary school children from Ukraine. The other hours would be filled with self study and work for my clients. On Tuesday and Thursday, I am supposed to help with the online open days for my school. I am joining to answer any student-perspective questions that might arise. On Wednesday, I am supposed to meet up with my dear grandmother for a cup of coffee in the sun, like I have made the habit of doing every week with her now. Add up the fact that it is the first internship week, and my alternative project has a very optimistic and challenging schedule, somewhere within those days, I am supposed to read a book and start some communication paths with professionals in my field of necessity.
Needless to say, most of these planned tasks for this week will not be happening.
While in this sorry state, I had quite the epiphany. One simple sentence in my head that hit me like a bus: “You will not be able to keep the schedule you so carefully made for yourself, and that is perfectly okay.”
Sounds simple enough, right? I know a lot of people who would not think twice about this. Yeah, obviously you are not keeping to your schedule, it is not like you can do anything about getting sick….
Yet, this “simple” sentence was enough to move me to tears . (Mind you, it is day 3 of flu, my brain does not work the way I am used to).
I started to think: Why does this realisation and acceptance hit me so hard?
The answer was easy enough.
Because for one of the first times in my life, I automatically, openheartedly, accepted “failure”. I do not hide the fact that I have dealt with depression for a large chunk of my life, with a fear of failure that – by now – deserves its own name. Add some hefty chunks of non-stop imposter syndrome, and you get a nice equation. A side note for first-time readers: I have been to a professional for my depression and am now in a second set of therapy with her to find deeper healing. I am okay.
Today, while feeling probably the worst I have felt in over 3 years, I found such incredible comfort in this growth. Because it opened up a sea of “what am I thankful for?”.
I am incredibly thankful for being sick now. After my exams are done, and no high-stakes events are happening. I am extremely thankful for still living at my parental home, where I have the option to just not work while being sick. As a starting virtual assistant who is paid by the hour, the missing of a week’s pay is a pretty nasty cut to lose, but a lot less nasty when you do not have to worry about rent or food.
And to end it off, there is a joke to be found in this whole story:
Over the past 2,5 years, there has been one thing non-stop on my mind. “Do not get Covid, you live with your parents. Do not get Covid, you live with your parents.”
After that: “Do not get Covid, it can really mess your system up. It can really hurt your memory. Your brain is still healing, do not let Covid mess that up.”
Here I lay, with all flu symptoms, this morning convinced I must have Covid…. Right?
Well… Guess what? That test came back negative. Ya girl is just dealing with a stupid, regular flu. Well, if that is not a joke to laugh about, then I do not know what is.
And so, on this absolutely gorgeous Saturday, I lift my head high and thank my lucky stars for all this positivity that can be found. Who knows? Maybe tomorrow I get to eat two bowls of soup?! Wouldn’t that be a hoot??
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