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The cold sore was a warning; the sense of being pulled a dozen different directions a contributor; and the urgent need for breath and order the first symptoms.

I am home sick.

As a dragon, you’d think I’d be especially strong and resilient. But given how ambitious and passionate we can be, I think it comes as no surprise that stress is the dragon’s greatest enemy. I can manage it for long periods of time, up late and then up again early, juggling multiple deadlines and priorities, adding self-imposed expectations to outside pressures…but eventually the scales tip and I am overwhelmed. The mind and spirit refuse to yield, so the body must. Still, if addressed early with a day or two of rest, extra vitamins and soup, all is set right with the dragon, who can then resume happily terrorizing the countryside and her own health with her wide-sweeping plans.

In the meantime, though in sweats and a hoodie with a box of kleenex and a kitty beside me, I’m not totally incapacitated. I am making neat, orderly lists with comforting paper and pen of all the writerly tasks I would like to accomplish or have started and not finished, as well as house and personal goals that have cluttered my mind, and writing projects I’ve neglected. And I continue to hammer out a daily and weekly schedule that’s both realistic and productive. As my body recuperates, it feels good to set my mind and time in order, as well.

Now, time for that ancient remedy, chicken noodle soup, then to retreat into my cave for a nap.