Why Me?

Last year, Jeff had pneumonia. He was feverish and sore and tired and all around completely miserable. As the doctor gave him instructions for the next few weeks, he pathetically moaned, why me?

I have to sleep alone?

I have to stay home?

I have to be quiet?

What did I do to deserve this, he cried.

Yesterday, I too, was diagnosed with pneumonia after a couple days of feeling crappy culminated in shortness of breath that scared me enough to get my ass to Urgent Care. After my x-rays and blood work, the doctor sternly gave me my orders:

Stay in bed as much as you possibly can. 

Don’t allow your husband or children in the bed with you.

Don’t share food or drinks with anybody.

Take lots of long steam showers.

Talk as little as possible.

Take lots of naps.

Beware that the Tylenol with Codeine will make you “loopy.”

Just do as little as you possibly can for as long as  possible.

Do you have any questions, he asked as he was finishing up my chart.

Yes, I responded, with glee.

Why me? What did I do to deserve this?!

About the writer


In addition to being the founder of all things Scary Mommy, Jill is also the New York Times bestselling author of Simon and Schuster’s Confessions of A Scary Mommy and Motherhood Comes Naturally (And Other Vicious Lies)

From Around the Web


Renee 4 years ago

Love it!!!

Mariann 4 years ago

HEY! I’ve been cheated! I had pneumonia three months ago (during a frickin’ heat wave) and my doctor prescribed NO SUCH THING!
…..I’m so calling my HMO and getting a new primary care doc….=)

Cheryl 4 years ago

Hey, where can I get me some of that there pneumonia?

Old School/New School Mom 4 years ago

You poor woman! Feel better and watch lots of bad TV!

humanmama 4 years ago

HA! Totally hilarious. What a mom response. When I am pregnant I dread the pregnancy, and all the time I look forward to the c-section! Hospital, a few days away, someone else taking care of me… Scary, definitely. :) Feel better!

Me a Mom at Home 4 years ago

It sounds like the perfect vacation excpt for the SICK part of it ;-). Hope you feel better soon!!

Karylle Lynch 4 years ago

Aww, it’s really a bad news! Hope you get well very soon. Take a lot of rest! Hugs!

Jessica 4 years ago

Are you better yet? I hope so but if not could you stop by and cough on me?

Mommyfriend 4 years ago


Cassie 4 years ago

Isn’t that the way it normally goes? When the kiddos or husband are sick, they are on their death-bed and need constant care. You on the other hand, get a measly cold which gets you no sympathy or perks! I know the feeling. : (

Cassie 4 years ago

Oh man! I would kill for a case of pneumonia right about now. But I guess our house should be limited to one illness at a time-that quota is filled at this point. Can I save my pneumonia for when it would be more convenient?

June 4 years ago

I’d give anything for a few sick days! For now, I’ll muddle through with an annoying cold that doesn’t give me enough excuse to call in sick yet feel like crap at my desk all day long.

Amber M’s Mommy 4 years ago

I hope you are feeling better soon!! As good as all that well deserved rest sounds, we all know as soon as you lay down, your home will fall apart!!

Paula @ thewilyweez 4 years ago

I hope you get some rest and that your husband takes good care of you!

Mrs TeePot 4 years ago

Oh no! Get well soon!

James 4 years ago

Get out your stack of magazines.

Jill 4 years ago

Oh man, you have gone me LONGING for pneumonia!!!!! Hope you are feeling better!

Julia’s Child / Sarah P. 4 years ago

Faux-monia! I love it.

Feel better, Jill

No Drama Mama 4 years ago

Yep, that sounds exactly like me! I was thrilled to death when I got the flu last year.

Kara 4 years ago

LMAO. Feel better! But, not too soon.

Chris @ CleverFather 4 years ago

Boy that sounds great! ….except for the whole being sick thing…

TVs Take 4 years ago

UGH! So sorry to hear about your jerky germs! Hopefully you’ll catch up on all those cheesy lifetime movies or draft a million blog posts. :-)
Hope you feel better very very soon!

Johanna 4 years ago

LOL, enjoy your staycation and feel better soon!!

The Flying Chalupa 4 years ago

Okay, aside from the scary diagnosis (don’t mess w/ pneumonia, Jill, PLEASE), the doctor’s instructions do sound fabulous.

I might just claim faux-monia, myself.

Feel better!

Fortuitous Housewife 4 years ago

Enjoy your naps & tranquility.
Hope your clan tends to your every need.
Hope you feel better soon.
Hope you can keep the ailing Mom ruse going for as long as you can/like.

Carri 4 years ago

Tylenol with codeine is the best thing about pneumonia!

Feel better soon!

imperfectmomma 4 years ago

Hope you feel better. But gotta ask; how wrong is it that I am jealous? 😉

Arnebya 4 years ago

I know this was a few days ago, but I hope you’re feeling much better by now. I know the inability to cuddle the kids has you down, but there’s good news: I found lots and lots of cute leg warmers at Target (re your Tweet a few days ago)! (To which my oldest, 10, says, Mommy those are for girls my age. To which I gave her my best “I WAS the 80s, little girl, where are the headbands” face).

KalleyC 4 years ago

Awww, you’re so lucky! Don’t do anything for as long as possible? That is a dream! I hope you do get well, and you get as much rest as you possibly can. Hope you get to enjoy your sick vacation.

Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes 4 years ago

I hope you feel better (not too) soon, but in the meantime, could you send me your snotty hankerchief? I could do with a rest too…

Gayletrini 4 years ago

I agree with Suburban Mom you need to book yourself in a hotel room if you want to follow all those instructions. Hope you not feeling too lousy…get better quick.

Another Suburban Mom 4 years ago

Ahhh, you think you’re going to get that rest, but unless you check into a hotel, its just not going to happen, doctor or no doctor.

Rebekah @ The Golden Gleam 4 years ago

Feel better soon but not too soon. 😉

I admit to kinda milking it after I had an outpatient surgery a couple years ago and relished the meals brought to me in bed and the time to just sit in front of the TV doing nothing and sleeping as long as wanted.

Rebecca 4 years ago

I get that almost every year but it doesn’t make me feel too awful. Just sleepy and tired and …ya know sleepy. I cough a whole heaping lot too. And codeine is my very best friend.

Kate with Twice Treasured 4 years ago

Congratulations? Get rested and feel better but enjoy the pampering in the process!

Carolyn 4 years ago

Hope you feel better soon, and I would have the same response.

Ally 4 years ago

Hope you feel better, but, uh, enjoy some of that, okay?
I resisted going to urgent care and have been coughing up a lung for almost two weeks. I don’t think it’s pneumonia, but I do think it’s bronchitis. Viral bronchitis, which they wouldn’t do anything about. But maybe a diagnosis would have made my family realize I could not actually do everything they expect!

Galit Breen 4 years ago

Hee! Feel better soon, Mama! But in the meantime-

The naps!

And the quiet!

And did I mention the naps?


tracy 4 years ago

Oh hugs! Feel better. May I suggest an extended hotel stay in a suite with room service? I’m pretty sure that is the only way a mom can really rest. Thinking about you. xoxo

Stasha 4 years ago

Feel better soon, but milk it good while you are a bed hostage.

Alison@Mama Wants This 4 years ago

Only you can make pneumonia sound attractive :)

Get well soon!

Seriously Sassy Mama 4 years ago

Can I come see your doctor. I will travel from Texas for those orders.

Gigi 4 years ago

Follow the doctor’s orders TO THE LETTER.

Yup, as a mom, I can sense a mini vacay when I see one.

But, seriously, get well.

Gigi 4 years ago

Ha! I have done that on far too many occasions!

Mommy2be 4 years ago

I feel your pain. I had pneumonia as a teen and had to be hospitalized for almost a week. It was the most horrible thing ever, I don’t wish it to anybody. Hope you feel well soon!

Kate Coveny Hood 4 years ago

I have very fond memories of the three days after my abdominal surgery last spring. ‘Nuff said.

Jess 4 years ago

Oh pneumonia is terrible! But those doctor’s orders? Not so terrible!

Kimberly 4 years ago

Come over and infect me, please! Then get well soon!

Jen 4 years ago

Sweetie, I hope that you actually can follow all of the doctor’s orders and get yourself better. :-)

Nan 4 years ago

Wow! Get well soon, my dear… I hope you have lots of good books to read? And don’t forget, chocolate is known to speed recovery from chesty coughs. (No, I totally did not make that up. True fact.)

Regina 4 years ago

Oh no! I hope you get better.

But man, that sounds like a great mommy vacation to be alone, quiet, sleeping.

Shannan 4 years ago

Hmmm… Perhaps I should feign pneumonia.

angelica 4 years ago

can I get in the bed with you? … I could do with a case of “stay in bed, do as little as possible and don’t let anyone near you”

Life with kaishon 4 years ago

Oh no Jill! I hope you get lots of rest. Enjoy the quiet. Usually moms have to work right through their sickness….but dads baby it up when they are sick.

Shell 4 years ago

Sorry to hear you are so sick- but damn, enjoy the forced quiet!

Elena @CiaoMom 4 years ago

Feel better—(and enjoy the respite!)–

highlyirritable 4 years ago

If I mail you a handkerchief, would you please cough into it and send it back?

I’ll included return postage.

(And feel better soon.)

Missy 4 years ago

I always say being sick is a catch 22. You feel like crap but then you get a free excuse to lay in bed, do nothing, be by yourself and SLEEP.
I hope you feel better.
Enjoy your time alone. =)

Mary Alford-Carman 4 years ago

Being sick IS the only time you can have a break, but what a way to go! Even when I’m sick I have to hide and pretend I’m not home or I’ll never rest. Bless their hearts. Hope you’ll be on the mend soon.

Rachel {at} Mommy Needs a Vacation 4 years ago

I’m so sorry you feel like crap but what you are being ordered to do sounds fantastic.

Laura Wright @ The ODD Mom 4 years ago

Words can’t even begin to describe the extent of my jealousy. Some people have all the luck. 😉

wisecracknmama 4 years ago

If that’s the treatment for pneumonia, I really need to contract me some of that.

Domesticated Gal 4 years ago

Can you come cough in my direction? PLEASE???

Robin | Farewell, Stranger 4 years ago

Milk it for all it’s worth, baby. 😉

Merri 4 years ago

At least you will get better – please also spare a thought for those of us that won’t.

Carpool Goddess 4 years ago

LOL, it’s all about perspective, right? Hope you feel better soon, but not too soon, if you know what I mean. Maybe breakfast in bed, too. Make the mini vacay last a while :)

Brenda Hatch 4 years ago

Can I have pneumonia too, please?!

Kat 4 years ago

I know that you feel crappy and I’m sorry for that but, boy oh boy, I love those doctor’s orders. I could use some therapy like that so please cough on me…..please…..

Marinka 4 years ago

Mazel Tov! (Feel better soon!)

Jaime 4 years ago


Callie 4 years ago

Can I come over and can you cough on me? Wait, is pneumonia bad for pregnant ladies? If it isn’t can you still cough on me? Or share a Dr. Pepper with me?

Feel better but until then enjoy being waited on and I hope you get some mad peace and quiet!

Christine@TheCupcakeBandits 4 years ago

I hope you feel better real soon darlin! Have fun on your vacation…..I mean make sure you take this sickness VERY seriously.

Kim 4 years ago

LOL. Only a mother could appreciate this post.

SoberJulie 4 years ago

Huh where do I sign up? Exhaustion, inability to breathe….might be worth a bit of silence 😉
Wishing you a speedy recovery my queen!

Brittany Baughman 4 years ago

Can I come stay with you for a while and share a drink…from the same cup? I need a spa vacation…something fierce! Why not me?

Lauren 4 years ago

Oh, I am seething with jealousy. Sounds like a spa vacation! (But, do get better soon!!)

Kim 4 years ago

Glad you’re having fun with the meds! Unfortunately that stuff just makes me a weepy, sensitive, mushy mess. Feel better soon!

vanillasugarblog 4 years ago

oh momma.
please take this rest thing seriously ok?
this pneumonia shit is serious; it’s hard to get rid of if you don’t take care of yourself.
lots of fresh vit c, not the pills, the fruit dammit.
feel better and chin up.

Kim at Let Me Start By Saying 4 years ago

Yay for pneumonia!
I had bronchitis so bad last winter, and it took me so long to realize I had it (read: didn’t notice I couldn’t breathe), that the doctors made me basically lay around being served like a queen.
Other than the whole unable-to-breathe thing?

Get well soon (or as soon as you feel fully rested & pampered)!

Brandy P 4 years ago

But not TOO soon 😉

Sunday 4 years ago

Wow! Talk about a blessing in disguise! I think the doctor also forgot to mention that you should eat all of your meals in bed.

a Book for My Daughter 4 years ago

I wasn’t exactly sure where you were headed with this story, but as soon as I got half-way through your list of things you couldn’t do, it dawned on my that this prognosis definitely has it’s upside.

Personally, I always know that I need a serious break from my kids and husband when I watch a movie where a character is in jail reading, I actually think to myself “That doesn’t look that bad!” I guess I’m thinking the same thing about your pneumonia.

I do hope you feel better quickly, but enjoy the quiet and the sleep!

Lynn from For Love or Funny 4 years ago

Oh Jill, I hope you are feeling better soon!


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