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I hate being sick, especially if it is a silly, supposedly non life-threatening illness but which hampers you and is really, really uncomfortable. Yes, it is the common cold. But add to it a bit of a cough, some sinus problems and aches and pains all over your body, with a little doze of fever, and there you have the full recipe. When someone says:”It’s just a cold” you feel like screaming. What is “just” about all the pain and discomfort you are going through. Your ears are block and every sound is amplified yet not clear, your facial bones hurt, your teeth ache and your nose is lacerated from all the wiping of the torrent coming through. Discomfort seems to be a rather inadequate way to describe it, but when compared to major surgeries or really serious illnesses, it does seem to be trivial. On the other hand with major surgeries and serious illnesses you are heavily dozed with painkillers. Ever heard of someone taking a strong painkiller for a cold? There are a few mild sedatives for the accompanying influenza symptoms of muscle aches and headache, but nothing that really helps much.
Just because it is described as “common” and just because it is quite prevalent does not mean that it is not one of the most irritating, inconvenient illnesses that need a great deal of rest and intake of hot fluids. Yet because we often think of it as the “common” cold we just take it in stride and work through it.
In my particular case that was what I did. It started a week ago and I just ignored it. It will take its time and go away. It didn’t. It kept hanging on and getting worse in the evening, till last night I had a raging fever. Ok, enough is enough. I started those mild medications to bring down the fever and help with the aches and pains, and started with the cough syrup. My voice has gone hoarse and it is extremely irritating when you answer the phone and the other party apologizes for waking you up! Even if they call at midday! Explanations ensue and invariably there is an excellent home remedy from what had been concocted by their late great aunt or grandmother. You don’t even have the energy to protest.
Others who call just ignore your voice and carry on with what they want, totally oblivious to what you are going through. They are so obviously intent on their own needs that your state goes by completely unnoticed. Maybe they are the lesser of two evils.
Irritating. Yes that is one of the most uncomfortable signs of this particular illness. You seem to be constantly irritated, totally intolerant of things that, under different circumstances, would not have registered at all. I think one of the main reasons people are advised to take to their beds and rest when they have a cold is to get them out of the way of others because of the potential friction resulting from this state of intolerance.
Now that I have vented about how I feel, I shall take myself to bed and avoid all human contact till I am able to deal with it with my usual tolerance, and before I lose all my friends and a large part of my family.
10 March 2014

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