Last Sunday I got on the treadmill and had a good ol’ workout for the first time in weeks, finally recovered from The Great Flu of 2020.
The next day at work I was feeling a little phlegmy and at first dismissed it as some lingering effect from the flu. I felt fine otherwise. That night I went to bed thinking that this was something. I woke up in the night, my throat raw and inflamed, my sinuses itchy and annoyed. It was something. Something bad.
I missed a day but seemed to bounce back quickly, so returned to work on Wednesday. Thursday I realized that I had not actually recovered, but was simply entering a different phase of what now seemed to be a cold. The most delightful part was getting to experience a whole different set of symptoms compared to the flu.
Thursday was the “running nose” day and when I say running, I’m talking Olympic-caliber sprinting here. It was awful. Also my sinuses began this back and forth of being clogged and unclogged, like a dam that was constantly releasing water, the shut back up, over and over.
I missed another day on Friday. It was now the long weekend and I was sick again.
By Friday night the first of the coughing began. The nose ceased its running and choose instead to just clog up permanently. I tried drinking some water while it was in this state and the experience was weird and unpleasant. Go ahead, try drinking something while holding your nose shut. Do this over a sink or outside, though, because you’re bound to spill. Turns out that breathing is important.
I kept waking up Friday night with my mouth bone dry, because I was breathing through it rather than not breathing at all. Saturday the stuffiness seemed to wax and wane again, but the coughing continued. My voice began to grow hoarse. The cough medicine did nothing or produced an effect that I could not measure with my working senses.
Speaking of senses, the last few days I have lost both my sense of smell and taste. I lifted a garbage bag with a day-old fresh chicken wrapper in it that had to stink to the hills, but smelled not a thing. That was kind of nice. But eating food without tasting it kind of sucks.
By tonight–Sunday–my nose is now officially only half-plugged, a major breakthrough. The coughing is worse when I sit or lay down, so my voice has also gotten worse. I don’t talk right now so much as croak. My voice cracks like I’m revisiting puberty. Once was enough, thanks.
But my sense of smell has returned a tiny bit. I had some mango passionfruit tea tonight and if I smushed the dry teabag right into my nose I could faintly detect a pleasant aroma of fruit.
Tonight I will take NyQuil and hope that my nose stays partly-functional through the night. Tomorrow I hope I “turn the corner” on the coughing because it wears me out, almost as much as getting sick with a cold right after recovering from the flu. It’s silly and wrong and I wonder what karmic payback this is for. Or maybe it’s just riding public transit every day.
Anyway, I thought about complaining about being sick and how it wouldn’t really change anything or make me feel better, but it got me writing, so there’s that. Here’s to better health for the rest of 2020 (pretty pretty please).