Shake the Disease (Week 11: Sickness and Health… well, mostly sickness)

In summary:

Monday was an emotional rollercoaster; Tuesday an emotional hangover. Wednesday—CRASH! Thursday, so, sick, I planned my funeral. (I wasn’t going to invite you, by the way. Just because.) Friday, I decided I was going to live; Saturday, I felt loved. Sunday, the coughing started.

To flesh things out a bit:

I got really, really, really SICK. I suppose it started to germinate Monday, poked through Tuesday, and flourished Wednesday and Thursday–those two days I felt so weak and exhausted that I essentially floated in and out of consciousness on the couch (thank goodness it’s in the kitchen, cause the kids still needed to eat).

Have you ever noticed that when your body is not well, your mind is convinced that there is NOTHING right with the world?

BTW, my OCD documentation indicates the source of my illness pretty clearly:

From the process journal, Sunday: “I needed to chill and rest but I felt GUILTY about it. I know this is ridiculous. I’ve worked so hard. I need to rest. But the guilt comes nonetheless. ‘Do More.’ No REST.”

Music, anyone?

I think this should be the soundtrack to this post:

On Friday, I explored my issues with the Buddha, in some detail:

According to most tradition, Siddhartha Gautama left—another word for this is abandoned—his wife and son to pursue wisdom and enlightenment. And, so we say 27 centuries or so later, he found it.

So I wonder… was his son proud? Did he grow up thinking, “Wow, my Daddy’s the Buddha!”

Or did he think of the Buddha as… “that bastard who walked out of my life and wasn’t that present when he was in it in in the first place”?

Sean: You realize every time you write something like that either your mother or my mother is going to call to ask if we’re all right?

Jane: I love you, darling, and you’re so fucking wise and insightful, but you’re not the Buddha and nobody thinks you are.

Sean: I love you, darling, but I also know you mostly write in metaphor.


But there’s no metaphor here. The more I think about it, the more I think the Buddha was a selfish jackass who was afraid of life.

(Sorry, Cara.)

Flora: Does anyone in your yoga cult read your blog?

Jane: Probably not. Why?

Flora: Cause they should probably ex-communicate you.

Jane: I think only Catholics do that.

Speaking of Catholics—I’ve spent much of this sick week watching G. K. Chesterton’s Father Brown series on Netflix. (G.K., by the way, stands for Gilbert Keith—I know you were wondering, so I googled it for you.) I don’t know if it’s any good. I’m mostly unconscious as I watch it.

I really like how green England is, though. In spring. Apparently also fall and winter.

Outside my window, Viking hell is melting and creating ruts so deep, they trap SUVs. (On Wednesday, coughing and feverish and naked under my snowsuit, I try to dig a neighbour out of one of the ruts. Cinder, in shorts and a tank top—Canadian child—helps. We fail; need to call a tow truck.)

On Saturday, there was synchronicity up the wazoo:

…but I’m not going to tell you about that, because it was all too specific and requires too much backstory, and there was a horse involved. Also, Eric Carmen’s “Hungry Eyes” and a pie (pastry, of an undefined kind) topped with whipped cream and a burlesque dancer wearing an apron on which cherries whirled.

But no green beer.

Still. I decided I was glad I lived. And I felt loved. Which was a definite sign I was going to live and defeat this man cold.

Hack. Cough. Wheeze.

Oh, I forgot to tell you:

On Friday, I decided I was going to renegotiate my entire relationship with money.

I have a new sankalpa. And I’m soon going to be rich.

Yes, I was on drugs. Fuck off. I had a blinding, incisive insight.

You: Care to flesh that out a little?

Jane: Um, yeah, not really. Like Saturday’s synchronicity story (unintentional alliteration, by the way), it’s all too specific and requires too much backstory. But stay tuned: I’m sure I’ll spin it all into a cohesive narrative at some point. How can I not?

It seems to me I’m forgetting something…

I’m sure I’m forgetting something…

I was, after all, very, very sick.

Sean: Was?

Jane: Cough, hack, wheeze. I did sit ups and squats today AND went out for lunch with a beautiful woman AND articulated perfectly why “retirement” was intellectual suicide AND made supper AND did my laundry AND… OMFG, I’m so tired, cough, cough, cough, cough, cough…

I remembered!

Right. So I have a question for you. Do you think The Buddha Was a Psychopath: A Mindfulness Manual for the Rest of Us is a marketable title for a book?

This may or may not be related to my drug-induced paradigm shift re: money.






PS If I don’t make it, you can come to the funeral. Dress to the nines.


The year started with a Monday; so does every week (Week 1: Transitions and Intentions)

Easier than you think, harder than I expected: a week in eleven stanzas (Week 2: Goodness and Selfishness)

A moody story (Week 3: Ebb and Flow)

Do it full out (Week 4: Passions and Outcomes)

The Buddha was a psychopath and other heresies (Week 5: No Cohesion)

A good week (Week 6: Execute, Regroup)

Killing it (Week 7: Exhaustion and Adrenaline)

Tired, petty, tired, unimportant (Week 8: Disappointment and Perseverance)

Professionals do it like this: [insert key scene here] (Week 9: Battle, Fatigue, Reward)

Reading Nabokov, crying, whining, regrouping (Week 10: Tears and Dreams)


The best things in life and on the Internet are free, but content creators need to pay for groceries with money. If you enjoy  Nothing By The Book content, please express your delight and support by making a donation via PayPal:

PayPal - The safer, easier way to pay online!

You: “But how much should I give?”

Jane: “I get $1 each time a sell a traditionally published book, so my bar’s set really low, love. Want to buy me a cup of coffee? That’s $4.75 if you’ll spring for a mocha or latte. Bottle of wine? My palate’s unsophisticated: $19.95 will more than cover it.”

If you’d like to make a contribution but have PayPal issues, email me at nothingbythebook@ and we’ll work something out. J

42 thoughts on “Shake the Disease (Week 11: Sickness and Health… well, mostly sickness)

  1. Pingback: Cremation, not embalming, but I think I might live after all (Week 12: Angst and Gratitude) | Nothing By The Book

  2. Pingback: Let’s pretend it all does have meaning (Week 13: Convalescence and Rebirth) | Nothing By The Book

  3. Pingback: The cage is will, the lock is discipline (Week 14: Up and Down) | Nothing By The Book

  4. Pingback: My negotiated self thinks you don’t exist–wanna make something of it? (Week 15: Priorities and Opportunity) | Nothing By The Book

  5. Pingback: An introvert’s submission + radical prioritization in action, also pouting (Week 16: Ruthless and Weepy) | Nothing By The Book

  6. Pingback: It’s about a radical, sustainable rhythm (Week 17: Sprinting and Napping) | Nothing By The Book

  7. Pingback: It was a pickle juice waterfall but no bread was really harmed in the process (Week 18: Happy and Sad) | Nothing By The Book

  8. Pingback: You probably shouldn’t call your teacher bad names, but sometimes, your mother must (Week 19: Excitement and Exhaustion) | Nothing By The Book

  9. Pingback: Tell me I’m beautiful and feed me cherries (Week 20: Excitement and Exhaustion) | Nothing By The Book

  10. Pingback: A very short post about miracles, censorship, change: Week 21 (Transitions and Celebrations) | Nothing By The Book

  11. Pingback: Time flies, and so does butter (Week 22: Remembering and forgetting) | Nothing By The Book

  12. Pingback: I love you, I want you, I need you, I can’t find you (Week 23: Work and Rest) | Nothing By The Book

  13. Pingback: You don’t understand—you can’t treat my father’s daughter this way (Week 24: Fathers and Daughters) | Nothing By The Book

  14. Pingback: The summer was… SULTRY (Week 25: Gratitude And Collapse) | Nothing By The Book

  15. Pingback: It’s like rest but not really (Week 26: Meandering And Reflection) | Nothing By The Book

  16. Pingback: It’s the wrong question (Week 27: Success and Failure) | Nothing By The Book

  17. Pingback: On not meditating but meditating anyway, and a cameo from John Keats (Week 28: Busy and Resting) | Nothing By The Book

  18. Pingback: Hot, cold, self-indulgent as fuck (Week 29: Fire and Ice) | Nothing By The Book

  19. Pingback: In which our heroine hides under a table (Week 30: Tears and Chocolate) | Nothing By The Book

  20. Pingback: Deadlines and little lies make the world go round (Week 31: Honesty and Compassion) | Nothing By The Book

  21. Pingback: That’s not the way the pope would put it, but… (Week 32: Purpose and Miracles) | Nothing By The Book

  22. Pingback: And before you know it, it’s over (Week 33: Fast and Slow) | Nothing By The Book

  23. Pingback: Ragazzo da Napoli zajechał Mirafiori (Week 34: Nostalgia and Belonging) | Nothing By The Book

  24. Pingback: Depression is a narcissistic disease, fentanyl is dangerous, and knowledge is power, sort of (Week 35: Introspection and Awareness) | Nothing By The Book

  25. Pingback: I’m not gonna tell you (Week 36: Smoke and Mirrors) | Nothing By The Book

  26. Pingback: Slightly irritable and yet kinda happy (Week 37: Self-Improvement and Self-Indulgence) | Nothing By The Book

  27. Pingback: It’s not procrastination, it’s process (Week 38: Back and Forth) | Nothing By The Book

  28. Pingback: Pavlov’s experiments, 21st century style (Week 39: Connectivity and Solitude) | Nothing By The Book

  29. Pingback: The last thing I remember… (Week 40: Truth and um, Not Really) | Nothing By The Book

  30. Pingback: All of life’s a (larval) stage (Week 41: Stagnation and Transformation) | Nothing By The Book

  31. Pingback: Damn you, Robert Frost (Week 42: Angst and more Angst) | Nothing By The Book

  32. Pingback: Speaking of conflict avoidance… (Week 43: Fight of Flight) | Nothing By The Book

  33. Pingback: Halloween, Samhain, All Saints Day, Day of The Dead, Candy (Week 44: Neither Here Nor There) | Nothing By The Book

  34. Pingback: Again with the silver-tongued Persians, and other stories (Week 45: Silence and language) | Nothing By The Book

  35. Pingback: War, Famine, Pestilence, Mornings (Week 46: Mornings and the Apocalypse) | Nothing By The Book

  36. Pingback: Time flies but the Christmas tree is up (Week 47: Status quo and Change) | Nothing By The Book

  37. Pingback: I didn’t kill anyone–it just smells like it (Week 48: Guilt & Poison) | Nothing By The Book

  38. Pingback: You have a bad memory, while I want to rest on a flower (Week 49: Mothers and Caterpillars) | Nothing By The Book

  39. Pingback: Atheism, Spirituality, Boundaries, Slytherins (Week 50: This and That) | Nothing By The Book

  40. Pingback: When everyone’s a special snowflake… (Week 51: Normal and Narcissistic) | Nothing By The Book

  41. Pingback: The year will end on a Monday (Week 52: Guilt and Gratitude) | Nothing By The Book

  42. Pingback: 52 Weeks Project (2018 Blog Post Index) | Nothing By The Book

Made you think? Made you laugh? Made you scream? Tell me.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.