Just a cold?
More like a sniffling, sneezing, coughing, hot-to-shivering and back again, whining, snivelling fight with a malicious virus.
I am beating this shapeless thing that ran over me like a Mack truck and stole my energy.
But it took its toll.
Night one: drinking plenty of fluids and resting. Make that trying to. Up every hour as a result of increased fluids and popping oil of oregano capsules.
Who knew oregano could cause such indigestion?
Day two: my passion for Greek food thoroughly quelled, I decide the combined, ‘earthy’ taste of goldenseal and echinacea is a more favourable accompaniment to my soothe-your-symptoms vitamin C cocktail.
Night two begins with a quick descent into much-needed sleep.
Less than an hour later, a choking cough wakes me up snorting like a poorly played trumpet, scaring my rescue dog Charlie into a howl.
As he always does when he’s afraid, Charlie tries to get as close to me as possible. In this case, convincing him that parking his behind on my head is neither consoling nor helpful is impossible.
I desperately need to sleep and consider whether I can turf him out the bedroom window without getting out of bed. (Just kidding.)
Sneeze by snivel and oh-so-attractive with a tissue stuck up my nose, I sleep in half-hour increments.
Major headache and nose running uncontrollably, I reach for a box of tissues, setting off an avalanche, as phone, glasses, hand cream and more crash to the floor.
Putting the light on so as to avoid stepping on my glasses, I stumble down the stairs to grab another box of tissues and, yes, drink more fluids – all the while repeating my new mantra, “I will beat this!”
Back in bed, I slip clean tissues under my pillows, handy for the next onslaught.
It arrives an hour later in the form of 15, count them, 15 consecutive sneezes.
Charlie is once again on high bark alert and runs noisily off down the stairs to the front window to protect me from some intruder.
The barking hurts my head, I reach for the Ibuprofen.
Eventually Charlie concludes we are safe from outside threats and patters back up the stairs.
I fall into another fitful sleep, only to waken to the need for more tissues – many more tissues.
No longer carefully placing used ones tidily in a bag, I toss them willy-nilly to the floor beside the bed.
What the heck, Charlie has been robbing every waste container in bedroom and bathrooms, leaving a trail of demolished tissues upstairs and down. This will make it easier for him. And really, my throbbing head doesn’t care anymore.
Day three dawns brighter – no rain at least.
Ah, but the sneezing continues, my tissue contingency diminishes but my ‘vocabulary’ expands.
Charlie, bored out of his mind and missing his daily walks, tears around the house, skidding around corners and digging his claws into the living room carpet.
Day five: I am in the upright position and at work.
Day nine: Still at work, still sniffing and snivelling and filled with compassion for anyone else who is suffering with “just a cold.”
After all, misery does love company.