|Posted on July 11, 2018 at 9:40 AM|
Photo by Imani Clovis on Unsplash
This is Day 3 of being home sick with the flu-- or whatever bug is around right now. Ugh! This isn't the post I had planned for you. I've been sleeping a crazy amount the past two days. However, in such a not-so-great circumstance, I found value from this experience to share with you.
My husband and I saw fireworks Saturday at one of the local ports on the Great Lakes here in Michigan. It was an absolutely gorgeous day! We enjoyed walking around the harbor together. Music played. Boats had pulled into the docks at the harbor for festivities. Of course, vendors selling those silly squid hats, glowing necklaces, and other stuff you can only get at this time of the year were being sold to pay for next year's fire works. There were several families, couples, and individuals having fun while waiting for the firework display that was to be shot out over the water. The number of people tripled by the time the first shot was fired. The local group who put on the display always put on a great show. Then we hurried to not get stuck for an hour in snail-paced traffic because it would also be an hour drive home. So what does this have to do with being sick? A lot.
Evidently someone either didn't know they were sick yet or they were just getting over this flu and wanted to see the fireworks anyway. You know that feeling when you aren't quite well, but you want to get out because you are sick of being cooped up sick. Right? At any rate, someone was contagious-- and accidently shared this bug with me as well as an unknown number of other people. I have a compromised immune system because I take a Disease Modifying Anti-rheumatic Drug (DMARD). It slows down my hyperactive immune system to reduce the damage my immune system causes to my body. It's good because I function much better than I did before, but bad because I am more susceptible to illnesses than I used to be. Many people don't think about people like me when they are sick.
Here are a few reasons to stay home when you are ill:
- You will get well sooner if you take care of yourself until you are well. Medicating the symptoms to rush out the door to work or take your sick children to daycare prolongs illness. I've worked in daycare before and can attest to how ill children stay when parents give them Tylenol and take them anyway.
- Young chldren and elderly people are very vulnerable to illness. Just because you can't wait to hold that new baby or see Grandma doesn't mean you should take your germs with you. If you are running a fever, have a sensitive tummy, or feel draggy when you shouldn't, stay home. Set another time for their sake.
- Cancer patients are extremely vulnerable to illness. The chemotherapy drug that kills cancer cells also kills healthy cells. Radiation burns from radiation therapy are prone to infection. When the doctor does bloodwork, he looks at the blood counts including white cells. Quite often those will be low during treatment, unless the patient has an infection. Lymphocytes are the white cell warriors that attack foreign invaders like the germs you may be carrying. You will often see these people with medical masks when they are most vulnerable. Keep some hand santizer at church and in your pocket to santize your hands before touching them, please. Wear a medical mask when visiting a cancer patient if you've been exposed to illness even though you feel well. Wear one when you travel. To learn more, see the CDC.
- People with autoimmune diseases are usually prone to illness. First, our immune systems are very confused and on high alert attacking our own bodies. When we get sick, the autoimmune disease worsens. The medications we must take also lower our immunity making us susceptible to illness. This includes people with type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, mixed connective tissue disease (mixed collagen vascular disease), and many more. To see over 100 types of autoimmune diseases, visit AARDA. I am that cautious lady who uses the santizer wipes on the cart handle at the grocery store!
- Taking care of yourself when you are ill is good personal stewardship. We honor God, respect others, and love ourselves when we allow ourselves to get well. As much as I would love to get together with a friend this afternoon and enjoy the outdoors, I am staying home so I don't share this bug with her or anyone else. There is an elderly couple in our building who would be very likely to get sick before anyone else. Illness could put one of them in the hospital. Be responsible by practicing good personal stewardship when you are ill.
Even in the summer viruses and other nasty germs abound. If you get infected, please be considerate by staying home until you are well. Everyone will thank you for it.
May God bless you!