I stayed home from work today. Called out sick.
I don’t do that very often: I don’t tend to come down with something; probably the last real sick leave I took was when my appendix came out last year and needed more time than I wanted to recover. But starting Sunday afternoon, and into the front half of the week, I felt like I was moving in molasses, and achy. Didn’t have a stuffy head or anything else, so I was pretty sure it wasn’t flu or something serious. But still, had no energy and couldn’t shake the feeling of blah. So when I woke up this morning and it was all the same, I decided to take a sick day.
While I did work on my final paper for my Worship Leadership class, I also napped. And that felt good. I had been sleeping well enough, I thought, but by early afternoon I just couldn’t focus any longer and needed to get into the toes-up position in the recliner. Two hours later, I felt better: less achy, less sluggish.
So am I fighting something? Or just tired from everything going on?
Does it matter?
In the end, one of the things we talked about in our Vocation of Ministry class last year was how we have to honor our bodies and the signals they put out. I know I’m definitely the type to keep plugging and keep working past the point of tiredness. In Orwell’s Animal Farm, I’m the Boxer the horse, the one whose answer to every setback is, “I will work harder.” Perhaps today was a gift, an opportunity from God to step out of the everyday and to rest a little. There’s no shame in that: the only shame would be in ignoring the signals and burning out before I even began.