I discovered something wonderful this morning. On the kitchen table, hidden among all the other bottles of pills and potions that my doctor thinks I need to keep me alive, was a bottle which said something about "coughs and congestion." I hadn't though of actual medication to deal with the symptoms of this cold but, by golly, an hour after I took a dose, I had stopped coughing. I haven't had a coughing fit since. The miracle of modern medicine!
So going along with the theme of the day, I thought I would write a "Thursday Thirteen" about things that I think about when I have a cold. All things considered, I am very fortunate that I have so few things wrong with me. I may get a cold, like the one I've been dealing with for the past 3 days, once or twice a year--or maybe only once every other year, but basically I have nothing serious to deal with, so I can be fairly cavalier about sick thoughts.
1. Even though I'm 75 years old, every single time I get sick, I always think back to the first time I realized I was an adult. I was living in an apartment with a fold down bed that took up the entire living room when I opened it. I don't remember if it was a cold or the flu, but I was in bed and realized that I was...alone. Nobody was going to make the bed for me, pin a bag to the side of the bed for my used tissues, bring me chicken noodle soup, soothe my fevered brow or run to the library to get books for me to read. It was just me. I must really have enjoyed being sick as a kid because all these 60+ years later, that is STILL my first thought.
2. All these years later, silly though it may be, I feel guilty for never reading Rudyard Kipling's "Kim," which was my mother's favorite book and which she was so excited to bring to me when I was sick. I never could get into it. Very strange that I still feel guilty about that.
3. Being sick is a legitimate excuse to snuggle down in my recliner and watch TV all day. And if, like yesterday, it is an NCIS marathon day, I've hit the jackpot. The nice thing about being sick with NCIS is that I know every episode well, so if I fall asleep during one episode and wake up during another, I haven't missed anything and can catch up easily.
4. And if there is no NCIS or Criminal Minds marathon, it's a great excuse to catch up on all those things you've recorded to watch "sometime."
5. Polly's very favorite snack is used Kleenex. Whether something has fallen off the top of the pile or she climbs up in the other chair to sneak one (I need that bag pinned to the side of my chair!), she make short work of the tissue in no time and it often looks like walking through a snowstorm here.
6. Orange juice never tastes as good as it does when you have a cold.
7. When you lose your taste buds, nothing is appealing to you. I lost 7 lbs this week. I know I will gain them all back soon enough, but things don't have any taste for me right now and normally I can eat anytime, even if I'm nauseated, but not this week.
8. Naps are a wonderful thing. Lately I seem to nap a lot but when you're sick it's expected of you...again, no guilt.
9. Nobody has to remind you to drink water. Water is the elixir of everything -- the first thing that happened after they hoisted me to my feet after my fall on Sunday was that someone brought me a bottle of water. When I'm sick, I seem to crave water.
10. I feel guilty saying this, but I have a legitimate excuse not to go to Atria. No need to spread germs. And they don't want me there anyway!
11. It's a time to feel grateful that you aren't really sick with something more serous than a cold and realize that you'll be over it in a couple of days and for so many others, sickness is a lifelong companion.
12. A quilt and a fluffy pillow. Was there ever a more inviting combination?
13. If you are lucky and your cold involves a fever, you can enjoy wallowing in fevered fantasies of what you would do to #45 if you had the opportunity.
I think I have taken advantage of most of these things and realize that thanks to the "cold/congestion" bottle I found, I am crawling out from beneath the mantle of sickness, but it was as enjoyable as possible, while it lasted.