I opened my eyes for the third time since falling asleep, but I no longer had the choice to lie back down as the morning sun was peering through my sheer curtains. I groggily checked my phone as it flashed 8:04, reminding me with every passing minute that I was another minute late for work.
Still, my head rested on my warm pillow and all of my blankets stayed tightly wrapped around me. Still, I lied there and let the Monday-ness of the day wash over me.
8:10, 8:20, 8:30 passed and I finally had to wrench myself out of my comforting blanket burrito or face serious consequences at work. Sitting up, I pushed the weight of three blankets off of me in such a hasty movement that I nearly knocked my cat off the bed. She had been sleeping peacefully at my feet, but now stared at me with narrow, seething eyes. As a final attempt to find a little more comfort and a lot more motivation for the day, I grabbed her and pulled her close to me. She stayed for a moment, too tired to fight my attempts to love her, but quickly ran away when she realized I was not planning on letting go first.
I brought my tired body to it’s feet, walked it over to my vanity, and stood there. My daily routine always starts with an overall assessment so I can come up with a game plan. Today, I was running through every foreseeable problem that I would not have time to solve. Unkempt hair? Check. Dark circles and perpetual acne? Check. Chubby cheeks in desperate need of contouring? Check.
Sighing, I resigned myself to throwing on a hoodie and jeans and mentally preparing answers to all of the “Are you sick?”questions I would inevitably face once I braved the outside world. “Nope, this is just my face.” was the snarky comment I wanted to say, but the one I planned on actually using was something along the lines of, “Just not feeling myself today!”
Then, as I was about to turn away from myself, to move on and walk out the door, I noticed something different. Something off. Something I did not recognize.
A swollen lip.
“Did I do that?”I wondered aloud as I brushed my index finger over the multicolored bruising skin, wincing at the sudden sharp pain from the contact. But how did this happen? I know I’m a pretty restless sleeper, but I never considered I’d wake up with a bruised face from thrashing around too much. I guess it was only a matter of time.
Brushing away all of my “how’s” and “why’s,” I simply frowned at my reflection. Today was very Monday indeed.
Then, I made a decision. A rash and wrong one might I add, so don’t let me convince you to do this tomorrow morning.
“I’m playing hooky.”
No way was I going to let this be any ordinary Monday like I planned. Instead of giving in like always, I could change my fate. Or not face it.
Calling in to work proved to be a little more difficult, as I realized after one ring sounded in my ear that I really did not want to lie. I didn’t want to tell my boss that I was sick when I had no visible ailments to show for it.
It was about an hour later that I realized I was not actually lying at all. My brain had not caught up to my actions, but my subconscious knew what it was doing.
Lo and behold, a movie came on TV as I was searching for something lighthearted to watch while I ate breakfast. It was called After Words and the story revolved around a depressed librarian. Oh, the irony! And though the plot itself was sad, I was not. I was enamored, in love with every way in which I related so much to this character. The movie was not sad. There were sad moments, serious moments, but it never felt heavy. A movie about a woman who plans to commit suicide but does not feel overly depressing even in the worst parts but also does not mock her or make light of her situation in any way is everything I could have wanted but never thought to ask for.
Spoiler alert! She lives. She stays. She finds hope, love, passion, everything she once felt but from a new, refreshed perspective. Everything she thought she lost was simply waiting for her to rediscover it. To see it in a different light.
So, no I was not physically sick. There was no fever, broken bone, or persistent cough to convince anyone that I really did need a sick day. But I did, and because of it, the Monday-ness wore off just like my subconscious had hoped it would. And I am okay.