The Good That Comes From Being Sick

The Good That Comes From Being Sick

What you lose in health, you gain in perspective.
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Despite our best efforts to strengthen our immune systems and avoid contagion, we all find ourselves sick at least once a semester. And while sickness is always uncomfortable and rarely convenient, these moments of weakness provide us with a unique perspective on things that we would otherwise overlook.

First, of course, is the sensation of bodily health. We never quite appreciate the miracle of being able to breathe until we can't for some reason. There's nothing like a head cold and a stopped-up nose to make us look back fondly on the days when we could take a breath uninhibited by congestion.

If we have a sore throat, we long for the day when we will finally be able to swallow again without feeling like we are being stabbed in the tonsils. A bad case of the stomach flu causes us to abandon our cravings for elaborate meals and instead long for the simplest crackers and water. We hardly notice our bodies' incredible capabilities of taking in air, water, and food until we become sick and are forced to do without them.

But our physical health is not the only thing we take for granted when we are healthy. We think of our responsibilities, like attending class and completing assignments, as drudgeries until we are no longer able to fulfill them. When we are too sick to attend class, we may enjoy the freedom at first, but soon find ourselves wishing for a change of scenery instead of staring at our bedroom walls.

If a fever or a headache keep us from working on assignments, we begin to miss the days when our brains functioned well enough to actually complete readings and homework. Sickness helps us appreciate our very ability to participate in school activities that we normally complain about.

And finally, times of sickness can help us realize how truly supportive our friends and family are. Maybe your folks drive you crazy, but the fact that they're willing to drive hours to see you and help you if you really need them speaks volumes about how much they care for you. And of course you already love your friends, but you grow to appreciate them even more when they risk their own health to drive you to the doctor or bring you soup or Gatorade. Sometimes it just takes a nasty virus to humble us enough to accept the generous love and care of people that want to help us.

Even though sickness remains a source of physical discomfort and a huge logistical obstacle in our daily schedules, perhaps we would do well to spend our recovery focusing on the new perspective that we gain through illness.

Your body knows when it needs to stop and take a break. Maybe sickness is a time to reevaluate how we are living our lives and look for ways to improve, whether that means taking better care of our physical health, shifting our priorities, or just being thankful for little things like breathing.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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Everything You Will Miss If You Commit Suicide

The world needs you.
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You won’t see the sunrise or have your favorite breakfast in the morning.

Instead, your family will mourn the sunrise because it means another day without you.

You will never stay up late talking to your friends or have a bonfire on a summer night.

You won’t laugh until you cry again, or dance around and be silly.

You won’t go on another adventure. You won't drive around under the moonlight and stars.

They’ll miss you. They’ll cry.

You won’t fight with your siblings only to make up minutes later and laugh about it.

You won’t get to interrogate your sister's fiancé when the time comes.

You won’t be there to wipe away your mother’s tears when she finds out that you’re gone.

You won’t be able to hug the ones that love you while they’re waiting to wake up from the nightmare that had become their reality.

You won’t be at your grandparents funeral, speaking about the good things they did in their life.

Instead, they will be at yours.

You won’t find your purpose in life, the love of your life, get married or raise a family.

You won’t celebrate another Christmas, Easter or birthday.

You won’t turn another year older.

You will never see the places you’ve always dreamed of seeing.

You will not allow yourself the opportunity to get help.

This will be the last sunset you see.

You’ll never see the sky change from a bright blue to purples, pinks, oranges and yellows meshing together over the landscape again.

If the light has left your eyes and all you see is the darkness, know that it can get better. Let yourself get better.

This is what you will miss if you leave the world today.

This is who will care about you when you are gone.

You can change lives. But I hope it’s not at the expense of yours.

We care. People care.

Don’t let today be the end.

You don’t have to live forever sad. You can be happy. It’s not wrong to ask for help.

Thank you for staying. Thank you for fighting.

Suicide is a real problem that no one wants to talk about. I’m sure you’re no different. But we need to talk about it. There is no difference between being suicidal and committing suicide. If someone tells you they want to kill themselves, do not think they won’t do it. Do not just tell them, “Oh you’ll be fine.” Because when they aren’t, you will wonder what you could have done to help. Sit with them however long you need to and tell them it will get better. Talk to them about their problems and tell them there is help. Be the help. Get them assistance. Remind them of all the things they will miss in life.

For help, call 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

Cover Image Credit: Brittani Norman

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5 Tips To Help You Feel Better If You're Sick

A few helpful tips if there's a bug going around.

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Not to brag, but I don't get sick very often, maybe once a year. When I do find myself a little under the weather, there's a few things I like to do for a faster recovery. I have no idea if any of these are 100% accurate, but I'd like to think they do. None of these will immediately make you feel better, but they'll help quicken the process.

Drink lots of water.

This one is a no-brainer, but it can be hard to do sometimes. I know when I'm sick, I definitely don't think about it. Water can help flush toxins out of your body, makes you hydrated, and can help you feel more awake and energized! If you're not a huge water drinker like I am, Tea also helps.

Stay home.

If you're sick, it's honestly better if you just take a day off and focus on feeling better. If you're worried about going to school or work, it's better that you don't spread anything. Let me just say, I'm fairly certain the last time I caught something was because someone behind me in a class was coughing through the entire lecture.

Rest.

This one goes with the last point, but sleeping will help your immune system fight off any infections. It's good to take some time off and get any extra sleep you can.

Clean everything.

I like to wash all of my clothes and bed sheet, because they're what I wear and touch the most, especially my pillow cases. This will help get rid of some germs and stop them from spreading. It's also good to disinfect anything you touch often, like doorknobs and table surfaces.

Take medicine.

This one also sounds like a no brainer, but seriously if you expect to feel better soon you should be taking some sort of medicine. At the very least, it'll help with your symptoms, so you're not couching or sneezing every couple minutes.

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