A Cough and Sore Throat

“Alas, the frailty is to blame, not we
For such as we are made of, such we be”

William Shakespeare Twelfth Night

So all week I’ve felt a cold coming on.  I’ve had so much to do that I tried to ignore it.  Getting back from a trip is stressful and there is still a great deal of work, cleaning and laundry to do.  I haven’t even been up to the houses since I got back I’ve been so busy.

In an attempt to ward off illness I got a flu shot on Monday but sadly it was not the all-encompassing vaccination one hopes for because on Thursday I started to feel unwell.  At first I thought it was just fatigue from all the training I’ve been doing.  This Saturday (the 24th) I am swimming in my first swim meet in 13 years!  I can’t wait!  I am going to swim the 400, 200, and 50 free!

Unfortunately as Thursday went into Friday my sore throat got worse and my chest felt more congested.  Nevertheless, I plowed through and did another swim Friday night.  However, it was clear something was wrong because I could barely do a 200 m.  My chest felt constricted and tight, like I couldn’t breath correctly.  By the time I got home I felt the shivers and downright sick.

Yesterday I spent the entire day sleeping and resting and with some dayquil/nyquil got through the day.  Luckily my sister Anna was already planning on using my apartment to cook her anniversary dinner with her boyfriend so she took care of me as well!  She did my shopping and made me sushi. I tried to stay out of their hair but it was still nice to have the company.

Now today is Sunday and I am resting once again.  I debated about going to the Urgent Care but I think I will wait and go to my regular doctor tomorrow if I am still not feeling well.  I’m pretty sure it is just a lovely virus but its always worth checking if it goes on for multiple days.  I just hope that it doesn’t keep me from training next week because I want to be ready for my swim meet.  I also have limited time to prepare for my next open water swim Slam the Dam in Vegas on October 1st.

It’s a longer race (1.2 miles so longer by just a hair) so I need to train!  Let’s just hope my body let’s me!

Sometimes I wish I had a stronger constitution- a body that withstood the virus’ and bacteria of the world.  Sadly, it is not the case. If there is something going around I get it- and usually the more virulent strain of it.   My entire family has somewhat weak constitutions, especially my brother who seems to always get unusual variations of an infection.

My cousin Julia never missed a single day of high school.  Me on the other hand I was gone 1/3rd of the time.  I just got sick more and my mother believed in keeping us home if we are sick.   On a side note there is increasing evidence that we should all stay home when we are sick:

1. We are not productive employees when we are working sick.  A recent study by the Harvard Business School shows that “Employers worry a lot about absenteeism, but new research suggests a bigger threat to productivity is “presenteeism”: sick workers who show up at work but are not fully functioning. U.S. companies may lose $150 billion (yes, that’s billion) annually because of presenteeism, according to some estimates.”

2. You are more likely to get sick from a co-worker/student that  goes to work sick than most any other interaction.  Think about it- you spend 8 hours a day in sometimes very close quarters with these people.

The New York Times says, “In a telephone survey of nearly 1,000 adults conducted by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases, more than one-third of workers said they felt pressured to go to work when sick. About the same number reported that they had picked up the flu from a colleague in the workplace.”

“We work in a Dilbert environment these days,” said Brett Gorovsky, an analyst at Wolters Kluwer. “We’re in closed office spaces, where germs are a bigger concern. And there’s downsizing. There are fewer people to backfill now, so workers more often feel they have to show up.”

Recently in Utah there was a measles scare and the CDC had to remind everyone that if your child is sick keep them home. We are losing our herd immunity as a society because of those that chose to not vaccinate their children (that’s a topic for another entry. A topic I feel quite strongly about- immunize your kids!).  This means we are all more susceptible to serious infections and can transport those infections to others.  Even conditions like measles, whooping cough, and mumps that were at one time thought eradicated are springing up all over the place.   If we ever get a truly deadly pandemic we will need to have developed the habit of isolating the sick or the effects will be terrible.

This movie looks really good but kind of freaks me out.

Again from New York Times, “In one case, more than 1,000 people were sickened with a gastrointestinal virus at a casino in Reno, Nev., in an outbreak that began with a few sick employees who said their supervisors had pressured them to go to work. The employees, mostly low wage earners, had little or no paid sick leave.”

3.  Disease transmission aside, with rest you are more likely to recover quickly.  I personally would rather have 1 or 2 days in bed than have 2 weeks of a lingering illness.

Anyway, if you are sick STAY HOME!

Today I will be following my own good advice and am sticking to my apartment.  Here’s to hoping I feel better tomorrow!

Btw, the only time I wish I didn’t live alone is when I am sick but I think that is mostly because I wish for someone to complain to and someone to do my shopping.  One time I told my sister “I wish I was married and could have someone to take care of me when I am sick”.  She said “Well, that really doesn’t happen when you are married.  What you want is a mother”.  It’s true.

I guess that’s proof that no matter how independent we feel, each of us at one point or another yearns for our mothers…

3 thoughts on “A Cough and Sore Throat

    1. Thanks. I’ve been trying with the liquids thing. Dayquil/Nyquil seems to help (although it gives me the strangest dreams.

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