I hate being sick. The sneezing-can’tbreathe-sorethroat-fever kind of sick. I loose interest in everything and get a little snappy. It’s still summer and that’s just the wrong time of the year to be sick. Flu-like symptoms are similar to migraine headaches in a lot of ways. I’m not hungry, I am dizzy and a little confused, tired, achy, drowsy and listless. I don’t want to play WoW, I don’t want to read or watch TV or do anything that I’d normally consider fun. I just want to sleep. And so I do.
I’m lucky enough that being sick, just like on headache days, means that I spend about twice as much time asleep as I do being awake. Awake is unpleasant. I can’t talk, not that I feel like conversation and I can’t swallow and moving hurts, but not moving hurts too and I’m miserable. “I’m miserable,” I say to Chris when he comes home from work and finds me still in bed. He soothes and refreshes my wet towel and puts a new audio book on my iPod, kisses my forehead and says ‘just go back to sleep’. I promptly do. I’ve spent the last few days sleeping the time away. It’s frustrating. Normal days have only a few precious hours in which to accomplish life and sick days just don’t have any. I sleep. I wake up. I cry. I complain. I sleep some more. I wake up. I listen to an audio book and drink some hot tea. I struggle to breathe. I go back to sleep. There is a lull in the early evening. I wake up around sunset and I feel a little better. Chris makes something to eat and we pick out a movie. Something good. Sunday night’s was The Host. Monday Battle Royale. Tuesday Bedknobs and broomsticks. He brings food upstairs on a tray and we watch it on the TV in the bedroom whilst I snuggle in and he strokes my back. I fall asleep again and the days bleed into each other.
Chris makes phone calls, has meetings, leaves for work, comes back, cleans, irons his work shirts, feed the cat, leaves notes for the temps, cooks, makes me eat and I sleep and when I wake up, he’s mostly just there so that I don’t wake up and feel alone. “I’m miserable,” I say. “I know,” he says and strokes my hair whilst resting his hand on my forehead. “You’re burning up,” he says. “I know,” I say. More water through a straw and he talks or reads or amuses me in some other way until I can fall asleep again. I hold on to his hand that’s warm and soft and reassuring. Being sick is tedious, but I’m too tired to care. My breathing stumbles, I wake up panicky, trying to think about nicer things, soothing things, comfort. I think that eventually, I won’t be this tired, I won’t sleep for most of the day and I won’t feel as if the smallest things require more effort than I have to give. I know this, and I know that having come far enough to know this is a big step towards better already, but it’s not that reassuring. Being sick is depressing and although I get to curl up in bed with a good movie, loving husband and warm cat, I feel as if I’m missing out. I miss my friends. I miss playing WoW and raiding and talking. I miss my life. And I’m tired of having it stolen so often.