Random Brain Dumping

Musings and observations about life

Got tissue? Sick and tired of being sick and tired

Woman sneezing into tissue

How is it that models still look good when they're supposed to be sick?

Let me preface this post by saying that I’m sick. I’ve been sick all year, and, frankly, I’m sick of being sick. I’m tired and sick of being sick and tired. Everyone I’ve talked to knows someone who’s been sick lately. I’m sure they’re sick and tired, too.

So, this post is about being sick and tired and all the stuff I tried and the stuff folks suggested I try so I wouldn’t be either.

One advantage of being a virtual employee is that I can still go to work while I’m sick and not have to worry about people staring because I may blow my nose fifty-eleven times (as my mother says often). I don’t have to worry about people seeing my swollen eyes and puffy nose, the pile of tissue in the trashcan or how many times I sneeze.

I am still mindful, though, not to sneeze into my hands, as I don’t want to spread my own cooties all over my keyboards and computers. In fact, I sprayed them down with disinfectant.

So, this illness, whatever it is, seems to have started on a Friday with a headache.  Because I thought it was just a headache, I did the stuff I normally do: I worked, went to a lunchtime Zumba class, worked some more, watched the news, “Jeopardy” and “Monk,” and went to bed.

The next day, I felt fine and went to the barn to ride my horse. Sunday, New Year’s Day, brought new symptoms: the sneezing and nose-blowing. I brought out allergy meds, and I recall being on the phone as I drifted toward unconsciousness.

Monday, the federal holiday, brought a scratchy throat and a dry cough. Out came the throat lozenges. (Tangent: Until I was in my early 20s, I always added an R to that word, calling them lozengers. The stuff we do and say when we don’t know any better. My mother thought “Stairway to Heaven” was a gospel song.)

Woman sneezing into sleeve

No, this isn't me, but I did look like that when I went to the store, as I couldn't stop coughing, and I didn't want the clerk to get my cooties.

Tuesday was more of the same, and I ended up at the store buying some day and night cold medicine. Oddly, the daytime stuff was for nasal congestion, aches and pains (What’s the difference between an ache and a pain?), and coughs. The nighttime stuff was for aches, coughs, sneezing and runny nose.

What I needed was a combination of the two that wouldn’t make me drowsy. Is there such a thing?

That day, I also told my boss that I was not feeling well and that I would work until I ran out of tissue.

The next day, I bought more tissue. This time, tissue with aloe in it, as my nose was raw from constant nose-blowing. I was coughing a bit more, my throat was a bit scratchier and my chest was beginning to feel the same way.

I also bought Zicam.

Another thing about working from home is that I generally keep the television on for background noise. I had seen the product commercials with the baritone voice talking about “that dreaded first sneeze.” I was somewhere around the 10,000th sneeze, but I decided to give it a try.

It’s a lozenge with Vitamin C in it that you let dissolve on your tongue; the directions specifically said not to chew it or swallow it whole. Friends told me it helped early on, but I’m not sure what “early on” was.

The fact that I sneezed only every three hours seemed to indicate that it was working, as I was supposed to take it once every three hours.

Someone also suggested a nasal flush, or that’s what I think it is. An aunt has recommended that years ago. Apparently, it’s a system where you inhale a saline solution. Maybe it’s my fear of drowning, but I don’t want to snort any liquid (or anything else, for that matter).

By Friday, my tongue was raw from sucking on lozenges; I bought more because they soothed my throat, and the eucalyptus opened my sinuses. I also found that if I mixed one of the daytime pills with one of the nighttime pills, I could sleep without sneezing, coughing, spitting, or blowing my nose – all things that had kept me awake at night.

Oh, then, I saw a news broadcast that talked about how many accidents are caused by people driving with colds. The theory is that when people are sick, they don’t sleep well, and it’s the lack of sleep that affects their reflexes and leads to crashes.

tissue box

I told my boss I would work until I ran out of tissue. Then, I bought more.

The most surprising and oddest remedy I heard came from my mother. It’s not surprising that it came from my mother; it’s surprising because she suggested I put several honey and lemon lozenges in a cup of water, heat the concoction, stirring until the lozenges dissolve. It just never occurred to me that the same lozenges that melted in my mouth would melt in water in the microwave.

I tried Mother’s remedy Saturday morning since I had been drinking hot apple cider all week and had run out Friday. The eucalyptus wafting toward my nostrils immediately helped, and the concoction as a tea wasn’t any worse than the taste of the artificial-sugar-laced Zicam, which a friend warned would taste horrible by the end of its run. He was right.

So was Mother.

I’m glad I bought two bags of the lozenges.

Oh, wait. Mother had another remedy, something about making tea from the … uhm … strained, boiled waste of horses.

Mothers don’t always get it right.

I have noticed one benefit of being sick. Only one.

My lips are plump. Any woman of a certain age will understand what I’m talking about.

Because I’ve been drinking fluids all day every day, my lips are plump.

Initially, I thought that starting the new year off sick meant that I would get this out of the way and have a healthy year. I still think that is the case, but now, I know it’s probably an indication that I should drink more water. We need water for so many functions, including ensuring plumpness of lips.

I also realize that I should probably follow the guidance of another commercial:

“You wouldn’t want your doctor to do your job, would you? Why are you trying to do hers?”

I guess I’ll see a doctor next time. If there’s a next time.

January 9, 2012 - Posted by | Random Brain Dumping | , , , , , ,


  1. As sore as my throat is I am laughing even though it hurts! For years working outside of the home dealing with allergies and sinus problems I am now working from home with my own Property Management business.

    As I wrote I went to the doctor quickly because I knew what was coming! And I know which commercial you are talking about! Great post! Laughter is like a medicine!

    Comment by Naphtali | January 9, 2012 | Reply

    • Thanks for the laughter and feedback, Cathy. You’re right: Some things shouldn’t be shared. Hope you feel better soon.

      Comment by jeeznews | January 9, 2012 | Reply

  2. What?? “Stairway to Heaven” is not a gospel song…I am still laughing. Don’t make fun of home remedies…cow chip tea was a mainstay growing up. Don’t know the difference between ache and pain either. All I know is that when I ache it hurts and I am in pain. Get Well!!! signed…”It’s Friday”

    Comment by Anonymous | January 9, 2012 | Reply

    • Shocking, right? One thing Mother and I also talked about was rabbit tobacco, which always worked wonders, but we’re not even sure where to get it these days. Back then, we got it from the field behind our house. … You can keep your cow chips.

      Comment by jeeznews | January 9, 2012 | Reply

  3. I’m going to try the melted lonzenges – sounds like a good idea. And I need to drink more water!

    Comment by Sarah | January 11, 2012 | Reply

    • Sarah, I’ve been melting five lemon and honey drops per cup, and that concoction is quite tolerable (almost good). You may want to try a drop that you actually like, too. That will encourage you to drink it.

      Comment by jeeznews | January 11, 2012 | Reply

  4. I know you are finaly on the mend, but tuck this away. My family has a remedy they swear by and especially if there are some flu symptoms. Take a teaspoon of blackberry brandy 3 or 4 times a day. There’s something in the blackberry that works. I’ve also been advised that Rock and Rye is also great, it’s a delicious and you get it at the liquor store with an actual lemon in it. I love it.
    Do you get where I’m going with this?

    Comment by Author | January 12, 2012 | Reply

    • Hey, thanks for the home remedies. My tolerance for alcohol is so low that I wouldn’t be able to work if I tried these remedies. … Hmm. That’s a thought.

      Comment by jeeznews | January 13, 2012 | Reply

  5. Consuming Vitamin C Supplementation is highly recommended home remedies for sneezing. Read more on https://tr.im/1bz4g

    Comment by sam anto | February 15, 2017 | Reply

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