About 10 days ago, Garry and I got sick. Coughing. Wheezing. Sore throats. Runny noses. Chills one minute, sweating the next. The perfect storm of a classic winter cold. My son came down with it at the same time as did half the people with whom I’m in touch on the Internet. We all have the dreaded What’s Going Around.
We get sick every winter. Every damned winter. It doesn’t seem to matter what we do. We get sick anyway. We faithfully get our flu shots, but what comes around is never what it was we got vaccinated for. We tried to have a conversation earlier this evening. I couldn’t hear him because my ears are blocked. He couldn’t talk any louder because his throat is so sore. Then we both started to cough, then laugh, which made us cough more.
Danger lurks. No one is reclusive enough to avoid What’s Going Around. The worst places (in order of threat level) are a doctor’s waiting room. The drug pickup area at the pharmacy. The grocery store. A dentist’s waiting room. Really, any place where people gather in the winter is a place full of germs. We are doomed.
Whatever we are suffering is never the flu. We have all the symptoms, but it’s not what it looks like. Even though this year’s flu vaccine wasn’t quite on target for the mutated strain that showed up. Oops. The CDC takes their best information and base the vaccine on it. They usually get it right, but sometimes, the flu that shows up isn’t the one they prepared for. Double oops.
We’ve already been told — on the phone, without an examination because all those other sick people are clogging the office — we do not have the flu. Is this supposed to make us feel better?
I’ve been trying to smile. To not whine all the time, which is what I feel like doing. I’ve got a ton of stuff I need to do and feel too crappy to do it. We are snowed in. I can barely haul my aging, aching carcass and a camera to a door to take a few pictures of this impressively deep snow.
It’s hard for me to stay cheerful when I feel exactly as bad today as I did a week ago, if not slightly worse. So does Garry. And Owen. None of us is better than last week. I think I’m worse. But the doctor says it’s viral, so there’s nothing she can do.
I’m not cheerful. I feel like my lungs are full of liquid. As if I’m being water boarded by a virus. I know it’s just a winter cold. It will go away. They always go away. I wish it would go away very soon. Now would be good.