College is so great—the freedom, the endless fun times with your friends, the cool new classes that let you expand your intellectual boundaries. There isn't that much to complain about really, but there is one thing all students know looms in the distance somewhere and will inevitably happen, especially with winter coming in strong: getting sick. What? Getting sick and having to take care of ourselves? Yup, it is just as awful as it sounds, and you'll most likely go through these steps during your experience.
1. First, you'll just be minding your own business, having a good time with your friends at school and loving life.
2. Suddenly, you'll start to feel the first symptoms and a slight denial will settle in—it's just a few sniffles right? And that's barely a fever.
3. A few hours into this act, you'll realize you really are sick with a capital S, and you begin coming to terms with the fact that it's only going to get worse.
4. You might try to prevent it and pump yourself full of vitamins and some good ole H2O, but at this point, the effort is wasted.
5. Very soon, you're in the throes of the illness and it. is. miserable.
6. All your friends are new to this whole "taking care of ourselves" thing, too, so while their efforts to comfort you are appreciated, they leave you yearning for your own bed and yes, your mommy.
7. You've probably already called your mom at this point, maybe even four or five times...today. "Yeah, hi Mom, is seven times too many times to take my temperature? No? OK, I'll update you hourly."
8. It suddenly dawns on you that you may have to call the doctor for yourself and go there, unaccompanied by an adult! *horrified gasp*
9. You also have to email your professors and try to make them see that you really are too sick to leave your dorm and come to class. (No, really, I promise I am!)
10. You should thank your roommate too, for dealing with your germs and being your resident doctor and medical-advice professional throughout this ordeal—and not even complaining once!
11. Finally, finally, finally, when you had truly given up hope on ever feeling OK again, a miracle will happen, and you will be your old self again. Back and better than ever!
12. And you know what? You can give yourself a little pat on the back, because you just got yourself through your first sickness all by yourself.
So people, even though college is fun and wonderful, don't forget to take care of yourselves. We are adults now, and we can take care of ourselves, but there is nothing wrong with still wanting your parents to come comfort you—you aren't all on your own just yet.