The Absence of Disease

by Wells

This was a rough weekend for me because the cough which reared its head about fifteen days ago mutated into a full-blown fever complete with sore back, loss of appetite, and bizarre nightmares.  I tried to sweat it out.  I fought it with Theraflu and Advil.  In the end, I brought it down with a combination of chicken soup and two Aspirin.  I can’t tell if this was the elixir I needed, or if the thing had just run its course.  Regardless, I have always thought of Aspirin as kind of a wonderdrug, and that’s just been reinforced.

So what have I learned?  What was the overall effect of being sick for the bulk of a holiday weekend?

  1. Surround yourself with loved ones when you’re ill.  My fiancee was so helpful and generous during this sickness.  That soup never would’ve made it to my bedside without her.  She understood when I wanted to stay home on Saturday, and then she understood again when I dragged her out on Sunday only to ask her to take me home.  She fussed over me.  She didn’t mind that I hadn’t cleaned the apartment since Monday (I can blame the fatigue, but the truth is I just hadn’t cleaned).  She was my hero.  I’m sitting upright and typing today because she sacrificed her weekend just as much as I did.
  2. Sometimes when life hands you a holiday weekend, you should capitalize on it by just doing nothing.  Granted, that was an easy choice for me to make.  But I’m staring down a long summer of weekends that have already been planned for me.  Shows, weddings, birthdays, trips, and a thousand other Facebook invites are going to make it hard for me to justify laying in bed watching kung fu movies for a little while.  So in a way, I should be thanking the fever.  But, no, still, fuck that fever.  That fever was a dick.
  3. Health is more than the absence of disease.  This morning I woke up and instantly knew this bug was out of me.  And  I was glad because the coughing was hurting my head and chest.  But I was also glad because that meant I could finally do the pile of dishes in my sink and clean the clutter up in my living room.  It’s hard to call yourself healthy when you have to step over things to reach a book or you can’t walk through your kitchen without being reminded of a chore in your future.  I like the lived-in look as much as the next slob, but when you get over a sickness you tend to want full health so it doesn’t happen again.  Right now I want clean rooms and smaller portions.  And about one shit-ton of blue Gatorade.

Now then.  Happy Memorial Day.  Remember vets like my mom and dad today.  And if you’re invited to a barbecue, be thoughtful and bring something.