An odd serendipity, that the word for one incapacitated by an illness is the just a pronunciation away from the word for “not valid.”

Given how I felt on Sunday, the two words were synonyms.

The feelings that each of those two conditions gives rise to is reason enough for special self-treatment. The writer feels like crap. The writer has several alternatives. 1) To get thoroughly drunk (a cure worse than the illness.)  2)  To suck it up and soldier on (not my style.)  3)  To punch a wall (painful and unnecessary.) 4) Or to simply feel it until one needs to feel it no longer.

When I am beset by these particular complications (and they happen no more than once or twice a year), I choose that third course. And my remedy to the State of Invalid is treat myself as if I were recovering from an illness.

When one is also possessed by a case of the physical icks (fever and aches) as well as the emotional ones (the subject of which came first, the physical or the emotional, is a discussion for another time), the timing is perfect; the treatment critical.

For me, I take to my soft bed; I nestle amidst its caressing pillows. I offer myself every comfort I can find. I make myself toast and lovely hot cups of tea. I take naps. I pile the space beside me with the books and articles that I’ve been too busy writing to read. I am kind to myself. Solicitous. I refuse to worry. I just heal.

At the end of that recover, the passage may still suck. But it sucks less. It hurts less. With the re-finding of one’s strength-from-sickness, one finds one’s patience with the self, with the flawed writer, with the person who achieves her result from hard work and not just by inspiration from the ethers.

One has found, for the moment, at least, a way to forgive. The in-valid is valid again. Welcome back to the world.

 

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