Ever get so sick that it causes a nightmare of fear? I have. It happened only last week.
It started like a normal ordinary Monday. The kind of boring Monday that is full of routine and monotonous repetition that begins with the mindless morning ritual. Yeah, a typical Monday.
Looking back, I realize now, is that this was nothing more than the silence before the storm.
You do not know fear as I know fear.
The work day really didn’t seem that unusual, except for the fact a plague had somehow infiltrated the office. And there isn’t anything wrong with that. Colds, measles, strange epidemics occur in the office every week. There isn’t anything wrong with fellow employees who will ignore any signs of sickness and they will boldly stride in to be on the job. As far as they’re concerned, they won’t go home unless they’re dead. Or more accurately, until everyone else is dead. It’s that special kind of moment when you say to yourself, “I’m sick! I must share this, like a link on Facebook.”
And when I started sniffling, I wasn’t that alarmed. Heck, I’ve been pseudo sick with some kind of cold or another for most of the nineties. Ever hear of SARS?
That’s nothing. That’s what I sneeze out of my mouth when I’m healthy. (Note: not an actual fact)
I laugh at disease like a person in denial laughs at Hoarders. I’ve never actually seen this show mind you, but if I did, I think it’d be hilarious. Hilarious until they find the guy who collects all the stuff I want, and then I’ll be jealous and maybe mad as hell. Until that moment, hilarious. (Note2: I wouldn’t get mad)
Seriously speaking, I do not get sick that often. Once in a while during the winter, I will feel a chill run down my back and maybe let out a random cough. Application of a sweater and a scarf and I’m able to continue cruising down the road of life with no sign of slowing. And that’s where this Monday led, to a tiny little sniffle coming from my nose.
Now I’m uncertain about how a cold develops. Maybe there’s some incubation period, maybe it needs time to hack my servers, maybe it was building a trojan horse into my sinuses but this was it. It was just a stupid little sniffle that only needed a couple napkins to clear up.
And the rest of the week rolled on. It was a good week, I managed to get a lot of work done. I felt like things were getting accomplished, and I only needed to clear my nose every once in a while. Sure, the phlegm was beginning to build up but I could handle it. (Wasn’t there a story about a boy who stuck his finger in a dyke? In this example, the dyke is my nose.)
What I wasn’t certain I would be able to handle, was the fact I had early morning meetings back to back for three days straight. It isn’t that I prefer late mornings, but there is something evil about being forced to wake up an hour earlier than you’re used to. Not morally evil mind you, its the type of evil that causes injury or harm.
However, like any dedicated soldier I trekked on. And although I certainly was not as rested as I would normally prefer, I didn’t think much of it.
Enter Friday, or what I like to call it, “what the hell is wrong with the weather here in Toronto” Friday. For you see, the start of the week (Monday) was hot as any summer afternoon. Girls walked around in short shorts, guys seem to have forgotten where their shirts were and I felt out of place wearing my winter jacket. It was alright, I was fighting a leaky faucet called my nasal passage.
However it flipped. The weather became freezing in the span of a day. It was now freezing.
Friday night, on this blistering cold Friday night, I decided to go out and get some culture. A friend of mine, she was singing in a cabaret downtown and had sent me an invite. Now, I couldn’t turn that down so I bundled up to fight the snow and headed out for a late time. (Yes, snow. As I said, the weather turned)
What I didn’t realize was, that Friday night was going to be known as “why the hell am I sweating bullets” Friday night. For you see, I had entered Fever land. And this isn’t the disco fever that keeps ya moving to the beat. This was the fever that terrifies. The fever that causes paralysis and you can’t clap your hands. Worse than Bieber fever, this was ‘I’m an idiot for going out’ fever. When I’m sending out text messages that read, “I’m sick. I think I might die.” I guess I should have stayed in. Of course, the rational side of the brain is usually one of hindsight, so I suppose I shouldn’t have gone out the Saturday as well.
By the time Monday morning rolled in, I was starting to cough.
This cough = the fear.
You see, by Wednesday, this cough had gone full blown into cough cough cough mode. And then I started coughing so hard that I thought it was connected to my spine. And then the bizarre happened.
I coughed so hard, that it triggered other bodily functions. Well, not full tilt but enough to make not want to cough EVER AGAIN.
Look, when you cough so hard that you suddenly pass uncontrollable wind, pardon my language but WHAT THE FUCK man. How does this help? This doesn’t help me, this doesn’t help anybody.
They’ll find my corpse in the bathroom and the paramedics will say,
“How did he die?”
“I think he imploded.”
And then the mortician will point to a chart and say, “His insides smashed together with such great velocity, we discovered the Higgs Boson particle. Can somebody contact CERN?”
The newspapers will read, “Man coughfarts so hard it became science.”
And I don’t even want to consider what would have happened if either side was, well, not empty. Ever sneeze while eating pasta? It shoots out of your nose like spiderman flinging with his webshooters. And on the back side, it’ll probably just spray out in some wild out of control shotgun.”
Fear of the coughfart, as you could probably have guessed, now had its grip on me.
Thursday night, I caught up on sleep. (Which is why this blog didn’t happen that night)
And do you know what the worst part of it all is? I’m just getting over it NOW. It’s a week later. It took the power of Advil, Dristan and Cold FX to get me through to this point.
I did at least get to try a dozen other remedies as well. For instance, drinking green tea. I drank four glasses of green tea on Tuesday night and learned that sleeping is optional. Seriously, drink enough green tea and you will never need to sleep again.
I usually like to brag when buying the monstrous new Tim Horton’s Extra Large coffee. I hoist up the giant trophy of a cup, smile at the other customers and whisper to them, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.”
But that’s a lie. I can crank that back and sleep comfortably in my cubicle. But not this time.
I stayed up till four in the morning that night widely alert and forcing myself to sleep. Luckily, I did. I slept for what felt like an entire night of rest. I check the clock it was FIVE. I had slept an hour, why the heck was I so alert? Because the tea was green.
So now that I’ve told this ridiculously long story, I will have to put an amendment to my ‘Updated Every Thursday’.
I do not know who would have had the endurance to read this entire mash up of thoughts but if you made it this far, I salute you.
– Updated every Healthy Thursday
PS> Don’t drink too much green tea