On Having a Cold
I have a cold. Or at least I think I do. Maybe I have the flu. I have never been sure where one leaves off and the other begins. All I know is I feel horrible. I wrote this blog in my head while I was lying in bed trying to sleep and not getting anywhere. It seemed to flow pretty well in my mind, but sitting here trying to transcribe it I just want to get back in bed. I have close to zero motivation to do anything other than wake up and feel better.
My colds used to run a familiar path. My nose would incessantly run for three days. I would be blowing my nose until it got sore and then I would stuff Kleenex up it until they got flooded. That is probably too much information. Sorry. But those three days were the low point of my colds. Once the nose stopped running I was so relieved I didn’t mind the coughing, sore lungs and overall aches and pains. I didn’t realize those were the good old days.
This round I started off with a slight tickle in my throat which got me to cough and clear my throat every few minutes. It was a little annoying, but I didn’t realize at the time that was the best of it. I had some chills which caused me to go to bed with pajamas, a sweater, a cap and multiple layers of blankets all of which got thrown off during the night only to be put back on again.
On the third day I noticed my lungs were hurting and I was sneezing. Every cough and sneeze caused my mid section to tighten up as if someone was crunching me. I didn’t want to cough or sneeze but it wasn’t like I had an awful lot of control. That peaked on day two and slowly subsided so now on day 5 I don’t flinch when I hit a sneezing jag. But yesterday the nose thing started. There is not really a pain factor as much as an annoyance one. I walk around with Kleenex stuck up my nose which I have to replace every too often.
Day 1, 2 and 3 I went to work. I could have pulled a sick day, but those particular days I knew I would be in demand so I swallowed some Advil and trudged my way through the days. I know I don’t appreciate it when someone comes to work sick so I made sure to douse everyone who came into my office with Purell to ameliorate my guilt at possibly sharing my woes.
Day 4 was Saturday. I took two naps. Not so much because I was tired, but because I didn’t want to be awake. My body ached; I was shuffling instead of walking. I had some food cravings. I wanted an English muffin with butter and honey and some eggs. I think my mom would have provided that along with some ginger ale which seemed to be the elixir for all ills. I settled for rye toast and eggs which I actually enjoyed. Later I had a hankering for some Pollo Loco. I dragged myself out of the house and drove to the local establishment to bring some home. I knew I was really sick when I could not smell the food. Usually the aroma seduces me into eating some on the way home. This time I was just glad to have completed the quest.
Tomorrow I go back to work. I am not really excited about that, but long ago I had a thought which is giving me some small degree of comfort. Anyone can go to work when they are feeling fine. You may not want to but there are not a lot of impediments. When you are sick and dragging your butt it takes another level of effort to leave the house. That is when I know I am a professional. So, today I am going to take another nap and hope that some fundamental rules apply and tomorrow my nose will stop running and I can feel that I am back on the road to recovery. Today I just want to pull the sheets up and make it through.
I used to take some comfort in knowing the process my colds would follow. I hope this new path will not be the new norm. Perhaps you take some comfort in your own pathways or perhaps like me the old assurances are not so reassuring.