Thursday, September 15, 2016
Women and Sick Days
I have a lot of empathy for Hillary Clinton this morning. This is not a political post-keeping that our of my blog posts thank you very much. Well it might be a tad political but I totally get the angst she must be feeling and felt about her bought with pneumonia and the push-pull to continue soldiering on through. I feel really cruddy today but have lots of commitments, deadlines, and people relying on me the next few days. On the one hand, I'll be backed up and will create a gap for others if I don't buckle up and head into the office. On the other, I know I am not fully concentrating, will be moving slow, and this will persist for several days if not nipped early. I have weeks of paid sick time available, so this not a loss of wage issue as so many workers face.
I know men struggle with this as well, but I don't think they carry the guilt if they do decide to take a down day the way a woman does. I think when men take a sick day the response is, "Wow, I must really be sick!" compared to, "Oh, I must not be capable enough." This might be my own insecurities, but the media have had a field day over the candidates pneumonia. I don't know if a man would feel the need to over compensate once back at work, but I'm already planning in my head how things will get done and what nights I can work late to make up the lost time. Perhaps if DH or the president could fill in for me like Mr Clinton and President Obama did, I would loosen my guilt. Nah, and I don't think Mrs. Clinton is feeling less bullied for daring to take a few deserved health days. I'd say the same thing about anyone that is in the public spotlight with a grueling travel schedule, but then has to defend their competence.
I am one to bolster myself up, but then when I do finally succumb, I am down for the count. It might come days later, or even a week or more later. Maybe I shouldn't attribute this to my gender, but my martyr complex I know I possess. I inherited it from my mom. I've been bouncing between writing this post, and running some reports for work, sipping tea and trying to squelch the motion in my head and gut, all the while telling myself I'm not really ill. We have the guy coming to take measurements for the tile sometime this morning, and I probably will haul myself in the shower and be prepared to go to work when he leaves. We have an open house at the high school tonight, and need to swing by the MIL's to collect her house and car key as she is leaving very early Sunday morning on a trip east and wants us to collect her car from where she is meeting the coach bus. There's a lot going on to take a "duvet day" as one of my British blogging friends refers to them. I bet Hillary has rarely taken a duvet day in her life. Let the media write about that.