This whole week I've been run down. No voice, a bad cough, chills and lack of energy have left me feeling pretty yucky. Coming home for the weekend has got me reminiscing about what it was like to be home sick. Here are the 5 biggest differences:
1. Staying home from school
Being able to sleep in and stay in bed all day made kids almost wish they would come down with pink eye. Getting sick meant being able to read, watch TV, bake cookies, and catch up on rest instead of going to school. Being sick as an adult is different. It means going to school and work armed with tea, tissues, cold medicine and trying really hard not to get others sick while still trying to be productive.
2. Having others take care of you
My mom would make me chicken noodle soup and tea, and if needed take me to the doctor. While I enjoy having both the freedoms and responsibilities of an adult most of the time, its just not as comforting to microwave a bowl of soup in your dorm room while doing computer coding as it is to have mom bring you homemade chicken noodle soup while your buried under blankets.
As a kid, I bounced back from being sick super quickly, probably because I was able to get lots of sleep. In college it's a different story. While I try to take good care of myself, drink lots of water and sleep when I can, I'm busy. I have class for 3 or 4 hours a day,then 4 hours of homework, a work study job, and club and volunteering I'm involved in, plus I want to be able to spend time with friends. While I wouldn't trade any of that for the world, it does make getting enough sleep to recover somewhat difficult.
4. Getting diagnosed
As a kid it seems like your mom always knows exactly what's wrong with you and when you should go to the doctor. As an adult I'm never really sure when my "long cold" is just that or when it warrants a trip to the campus nurse or the doctor. So if I am sick for longer than 4 or 5 days, figuring out what is wrong with me involves talking to all the girls on my floor, going on WebMD and being told I have cancer (seriously don't go on WebMD), and calling Mom or Dad or both before deciding what I should do.