It's hard to not feel so sorry for yourself when you have a snotty head cold and very little time to properly rest. And I don't mean putting your feet up at the end of the day, I mean proper rest, lying in a bed/on a couch drinking nothing but hot, medicinal beverages and staying warm under a comfy blanket. Yes, I feel sorry for myself and simple things feel like a trial - cooking a meal for Ollie which he'll reject anyway, getting both boys into bed with minimum fuss, collecting groceries... oh the bother!
But yesterday, I spoke to a dear friend that I have neglected over the last few months and found out that his mother is awaiting diagnosis of what is thought to be terminal cancer of the bone marrow. It brought an entirely new perspective on the answer to the question 'how are you?'. My friend is, as I expected, the bastion of his family, dealing with a situation that most adults will never have to encounter with dignity, integrity and heart. He is a young, intelligent, happy and honest individual who deals with life's situations with humour and energy. But this is a little different. The most he gave away about the gravity of his situation was that it was tiring. Tiring! If I am complaining this much about a head cold, I cannot imagine how I would begin to cope with seeing a loved one deteriorate before me.
Our friends are the people we choose to share our lives with. Our family are those we are given. I am lucky that my friends and family are beautiful, diverse, intelligent, good, kind people that shape who I am. I may not always agree with them but in one way or another, they teach me how to be better at what I do and remind me that when I have a cold, I should stop complaining and get on with life.