I have a cold. gross. It results in nasty tissues littering the floor around the trash can, but only briefly because Rusty the 7 month old Dachshund ADORES soggy tissues and collects them in his bed, along with empty toilet paper tubes, dirty socks, and the wax paper strips that you peel off panty liners before sticking them in your undies. (Necessary when you’ve had 4 kids and a cold that makes you sneeze)
And more symptoms (I love to overshare!)
A runny nose means clogged up ears. Mouth breathing due to congestion results in burping, which results in popping ears due to cloggedness, which actually feels kinda good in a sick sort of way, like that feeling you get when you stretch and your joints pop in an alarming manner. So I sit here in the recliner, with a bag of pretzels and a cup of hot coffee, cracking and popping, burping and rolling my jaw around to try and clear my ears. Everyone else is mumbling and i can’t hear anything. “How come the volume is turned up so high, Mom?” Every now and then I’ll hold my nose and mouth shut and blow, popping the ears a little bit painfully but it created a few minutes of better hearing. Mucinex helps loosen everything up, but those things are horse pills and it’s difficult to swallow them with a tender throat.
I am, kinda thankfully, not alone in this disease. Will (he’s nearly 24) and #4 (12) also have it. I doped #4 up on Dayquil and sent him to school. Oh I know, there will be people going “TSK” and accusing me of abuse and how awful it is that I am willing to risk the health of the other 20 kids in his class etc etc…but I am SICK and in no mood to deal with yet another person snuffling and blowing and touching my stuff. Will stayed in bed until 11 and now I hear him banging around upstairs, groaning and snorting and making disgusting noises that probably involve mucus and the sink drain.
Disease makes me hungry. I could go for salty foods like french fries and pretzels right now. They feel so good going down a scratchy throat. The day before yesterday, when that ominous tickle began in the back of my throat, I put together and excessively garlicky crock pot of chicken soup. Garlic and pepper, that’s what’s in order. And salt. Technically I am not to have salt, due to high blood pressure and kidney issues, but…I need it. And so it is. 2 gallons of garlic chicken soup. how much garlic? Almost more than chicken. An entire head of garlic was roasted, mashed and added, as well as a very heaping spoonful (soup spoon, not dainty wimpy teaspoon) of minced garlic from the jar. Yes, my pores reek of garlic but I’m not exactly in a Love Fifi kind of mood anyway.(refer to the tissues littering the floor and panty liners)
20 years ago, when the boys were really little, getting sick was Not An Option. They went to day care one day a week (Friday) so I could buy groceries, have lunch with Terry, and spend time doing something without interruption. Occasionally they would bring home some contagious disease and I would
fill the bathtub with Lysol and hold them by their heels to dunk them in it give them a good bath with Dial soap, a dose of vitamin C and wash all the toys down with bleach water. It worked pretty well and Terry and I didn’t get sick. I guess I’ve gotten slack with all that. David (22) was sick a couple of weeks ago, and beyond asking him to wash his hands and relieving him of kitchen responsibilities, I didn’t do much. Maybe I should have. Oh well.
There are things I have learned over the years of dealing with minor diseases. I will list them here for your edification. You’re welcome.
1. Puffs Plus tissues (the ones with the lotion in them) will go through the laundry intact. This means 2 things: you can recycle them (they’re even softer the 2nd time around) and you’d be wise not to flush them if you have a septic tank. They also come through a dachshund puppy’s digestive system relatively intact, which is kind of weird.
2. Chicken soup really IS good for a cold. Extra salt, extra pepper, extra extra garlic. Parsley is high in vitamin C so add that. Make it in a crock pot so you don’t have to watch it. Use brown rice instead of white so it doesn’t turn weird and gloppy. Use boneless skinless breasts so you don’t have to fool with anything. Just throw them in there.
3. Lemon ginger tea. I cannot stress this enough. It’s amazing on a sore throat, clears the sinuses, and you can taste it even though you are completely clogged up.
4. It’s kind of pointless to do around disinfecting everything once you’re sick,especially if others in the household are sick as well. HOWEVER, after everyone is feeling better, Bleach Stuff! Wash pillows, sheets, blankets in hot hot water and bleach them (especially the pillows and sheets) if you can. If, like me, you’re on a septic tank and bleach is bad for it, get a box of Rid-Ex and flush it the next day. It is amazing how much better you’ll feel knowing your bedding is clean. I have a vivid imagination and when we’ve been sick,I can see the germs crawling around on my pillow. It looks like ComicCon and makes me nervous. Use Lysol spray on surfaces you can’t wash, like doorknobs, counters, sinks and toilets, and don’t forget the door frames that people grab when they swing around a corner.
5. Also- Zicam. It works. It alters your tastebuds so everything tastes like metal, but it also (for me) takes a cold that would last 7-10 days and have me wretchedly miserable for 5 of those days and shortens it to 5 days and only mildly uncomfortable. Follow the directions, take one every 3 hours and don’t drink anything for 15 minutes after taking it. (this is an uncompensated endorsement)
I am very thankful that I got the house all tidied up after Christmas, because now the stuff that needs disinfecting is fairly minimal, since all the
crap decorations and piles have been put away.
For now however, I am sitting in the chair with a hot cup of coffee, listening to my ears pop with congestion, mouth breathing, and throwing tissues in the general direction of the trash can. Rusty will keep things tidy for me. If only he had thumbs and could fix me some soup…