[The Brazil Times nameplate] Partly Cloudy ~ 65°F  
High: 64°F ~ Low: 48°F
Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Epic spring battle with the flu

Sunday, April 26, 2009

No other word quite describes what the last two weeks have been like except yuck.

Enduring flu symptoms is horrible.

It started out as a sinus headache on the Thursday before Easter, quickly turned into a torrential downpour of fluid from my nose on Friday and then there was nothing Saturday.

I was grateful it was over so quick.

Oh, how na*ve can a person be.

By late Easter Sunday, my nose was running again and I noticed a scratchy sensation in the back of my throat. That's when I knew I was in trouble.

Although I had a flu shot, I had officially joined so many others I knew who were waging war against spring influenza.

It invaded my body like an alien invader in one of those sci-fi movies.

A walking biohazard, I felt like an incubator for some new slimy green life force.

Not sure of the exact number, but I am now personally responsible for the death of at least a few dozen trees sacrificed to the tissue gods.

(I also want to hug the creative genius that thought up the idea of adding Vicks vapor rub to tissues.)

My ears were so stuffed up and ringing that I couldn't even walk without bumping into a wall.

Fatigue set in and slowly my joints started to ache as "the flu sweats" combined together to make my life miserable. The worst part is when brief periods of feeling better -- right before the flu invades its host even more -- only make you feel worse.

Staying home or going to work were equally bad options.

Encased in blankets and heating pads, slathered in Vicks and living on what sustenance cold medicine, aspirin and orange juice (and a few saltine crackers) offered was horrible.

I couldn't sleep, I wasn't comfortable no matter what position I tried and I was fighting the urge to scream in boredom and frustration at being sick.

I was grateful when I lost my voice, because family members stopped asking me how I felt.

At least there was something to do at work, but I was miserable doing it.

Thank God for the telephone, because I know I looked a fright.

I would have scared my sources if they had seen me.

Although there's no steady pattern of healing when fighting the flu, I tried my best to push forward without being a pest to others.

Then, one by one, my family began to slip into their own epic battles with flu until everyone at our house was hacking and shivering.

My son missed two days of school, my father went to bed for four days, my daughter sacrificed a few trees to the tissue gods in her name, my housemate created a three-inch stack of cough drop wrappers and we all cringed when our cat Iggy started to sneeze.

In between coughing fits, we collectively theorized whether or not Clay County had recently become the site of some type of germ warfare testing.

When my sinuses opened up the first time last Thursday, and I got a good whiff of the fresh-cut flowers on the living room table, it was incredible. Even food smells and tastes better.

On Friday, my son returned to school, my daughter didn't ask for more tissues and my father felt like getting dressed while my housemate felt good enough to clean house and make dinner for everyone. Laughter has returned to our house.

Although struggling with a few leftover flu symptoms, at least for me, I'm happy to be on the road to good health again.