Mental Health Day

Sometime between late last night and early this morning I decided I
would take a mental health day today.  I’m not sure when or how
this decision was made, but it was.  I was awoken by a phone call
this morning around 9ish and completely out of it answered; it was the
secretary of something or other for medical rotations at the hospital
wondering if I was okay because my team was worried about me. 
Worried?  Worried?  I don’t even have a team.  Today
would have been my first day at L&D, how did I even have a team and
what could they be worried about?  She wanted to know if I would
be able to make it to lecture and I told her I would call her
back.  I did, only to receive the answering service and left a
message saying I would hopefully be in tomorrow but couldn’t make it in

It cracks me up to think that she would call.  Why do the
residents care?  They don’t act like they care when I’m
around.  Some of them barely speak to me and when they do, it’s
more out of a sense of “teaching” me than anything else.  Who in
the world would be concerned if the MS-III didn’t show up?  Really

In any case, I was battling with guilt after she called me.  I am
not vomiting, swallowing pieces of my throat or fainting.  I am
just weary, of answering and asking questions.  I just needed a
day to myself.  To patch myself together.  To pay off
bills.  To watch some Charlie Brown cartoons and return overdue
books and videos.  Things I can’t do on the weekend when I have a
gazillion other things to attend to.  So in hashing this out with
myself I decided that we (all medical students and physicians) should
be allowed one mental health day a month.  It could be the first
day of the month, in the middle, or the last day.  It would just
need to be one day when you wake up, look around, moan b/c for some
reason your body hurts and then snuggle right back into bed.  Just
one weekday to be away from everyone and everything.  That’s all
I’m asking.

Why was I feeling guilty?  Because my reasoning for not going in
wouldn’t have been plausible to some people.  I’m not deathly ill,
depressed or weeping.  I’m just tired.  Tired, achy and in
need of quiet far, far, far away from the world time.  In the real
world, you take a day off–perhaps without pay–but you do it.  In
my ivory tower I am assailed with guilt b/c I need to be away for just
one day.  That’s all I’m asking. 

I know we would all be better off with one mental health day so why did
I struggle so much to take it?  I’m in more of a foul mood now
that I had to inform people I wouldn’t be around then if I just didn’t
show up until tomorrow…sigh…


About papillion

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4 responses to “Mental Health Day

  • spokaloothezoo

    Everyone deserves a day off once in a while. I make up for others who do not take them, by taking mine frequently.

    • ladylord

      lol. well, i’m sure you need them..what with all the ongoing academic and dental concerns you are currently experiencing…whew, a lot is going on in your life m’dear.

  • calixtan

    dude. take it now, and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy it. when you’re an md you’ll NEVER get one. 😛

  • Anonymous

    Every week there’s a day off for resting…. the Sabbath. But it’s tough to just rest when there’s so many chores and errands to run. I’ve been trying to make Sunday my Sabbath, no work at all, but I haven’t been that successful with it yet. lazybum100

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