I’ve been proper poorly. I have heroically bumbled through the past six weeks in a lurgy infested fug. Usually the pious one, I observe sympathetically as those around me are taken down by the seasonal cold and flu mutations. This year, however, it was my turn to take a bullet – or two.
Apparently this year, the H3N2 virus has come all the way from the Antipodes. If I were lucky enough to be basking in glorious sunshine, BBQ’ing my food and living in flip flops, I could quite possibly tolerate a dose of Australian flu. But I am in Hove, struggling with thick cloud, living off mushy carbs and wearing thermal socks. All of which have contributed to my bout of Aussie flu being even more insufferable.
The first sign that my health was on a downward spiral was a sore throat. This evolved into an epic cough, which many compassionately compared to a death rattle. The cough disrupted my sleep to such an extent, that I went for almost a month barely surviving on four hours a night. I tried to tackle the cough with an inordinate amount of vitamin C, local honey and homemade ginger tea. In hindsight, I should have gone straight to the chemist for some hard drugs.
Once the cough had abated I was left with 50% of my hearing and a dizzying amount of snot. The continual blowing of my nose and wiping of my eyes, prevented me from wearing any form of make-up. Having not slept for some considerable time, a total lack of makeup added to my misery. I spent what seemed like an eternity mimicking a corpse. I was unable to make eye contact with anyone, for fear of imprinting a lasting image of my undead self on them forever. As luck would have it, just when I thought I was on the road to recovery, I was hit with a bout of nausea, a very upset stomach and an outbreak of adult acne.
In the darkest of times, there is however always someone worse off than you, and that person was my friend Karen. Karen thought she had woken up with conjunctivitis, but when she sat in front of her GP, she was informed that she was producing so much mucus it was actually seeping out of her eye sockets. Thankfully I escaped the humiliation of ‘snot eye’- the GPs words not mine. Mucus forcing its way out of my eyeballs would most definitely, have tipped me over the edge.
You must by now be thinking to yourself, that it truly is a miracle that I’m still here and able to tell you my tale of seasonal woe? Indeed, I am one of the lucky ones. There is always a lesson to be learnt when things get tough. My lesson this time around was how very, very blessed I am to have good health. Until it was momentarily taken away from me, I didn’t appreciate the enormity of it. How very grateful I am that it was just a temporary hitch and not a chronic illness.
As we move into 2018, I wish only good things for us all. I am not setting myself traditional goals this year, my challenge is to appreciate all the great things I already have in my life. To stop striving for the material things that I think will make me happy. I have my health, I have my home and I have the love of my family and friends. It’s not an abundance of mucus in my eyes that is stopping me from seeing just how great my life is, it’s my own limiting perception. I really do have it all.
This piece also featured in the Brighton & Hove Independent