Head Full of Snot: Writing from Where I’m At

canstockphoto8117969I’m in a bit of a dark place this week. My head is throbbing with a sinus infection. I have a sore throat and my eyes are watering. Every fiber of my being wants to write, needs to write. But I know what that means. It means that what I write will most likely be morose and grim and possibly a little creepy.

It’s days like these, when I’m tempted to throw myself, prostrate across my bed and call it a day. All winter long, I’ve barely recovered from one illness before being hit by another. I got a flu shot, I exercise, I eat well, but still, I feel like I’m a big weenie who can’t fight off a basic cold.

Yesterday, somebody asked me if I took supplements. She’s a nice person, so I saved my raging against marketing gimmicks and the FDA and the need for nutritional food for another day. But I still felt defensive, like I hadn’t done all the right things and were to blame for this misery. Another person mentioned probiotics. Been there, done that, eating the yogurt with all the weird shit in it. Weird shit about sums up how I spent the next few days.

The fact of the matter is that unless you live alone, don’t use public transportation, and don’t interact with other humans on a regular basis, you’re going to be exposed to infectious diseases. I have a couple of strikes against me – an elementary school child and a husband who rides public transportation and works in a cubicle farm. I am home most of the day working (or pretending to) so my exposure comes from people I hug, kiss and get breathed on by regularly.

The other thing that people talk about is cleaning. I come from an OCD family, so that’s not an issue. My hands are raw from cleaning and dishes and hand washing. However, we do not use chlorine based chemicals or disposable wipes in the interests of the environment. The smells are overwhelming as well. But here again, I feel like I have to defend my insistence on using vinegar for everything, that I am still somehow to blame for my illnesses.

I’ve always been a relatively healthy person until I had a child, hit middle age and started to spread myself pretty thin commitment-wise. I have tried to manage time so that I get enough sleep, but peri-menopausal hormone shifts mean vivid dreams about working on a cargo ship or that I forgot something incredibly important, which startles me awake at 2am. I’ve written about the insomnia, the weird waking hours. Short of taking mind-altering drugs, I’ve accepted that these are the cards I’ve been dealt.

I can only take responsibility for the factors within my reasonable control. Beyond that, I’m going to write what I’m going to write – while sneezing, coughing, even possibly groaning a bit. It’s a victory to write no matter how I feel. Who knows what might emerge out of my murky, stuffed up thoughts? Just don’t ever use my keyboard.

50 Comments on “Head Full of Snot: Writing from Where I’m At

  1. Poor you! Hot compresses may make you feel better. Try doing that every few hours for about 15 minutes each time. Nothing I hate more than a sinus infection. It just makes you want to cut your head off. Am not a fan of antibiotics by any means, but you may have to in the end. Feel better soon.

    Like

    • Thanks – I have this great wrap that heats up in the microwave and really relieves some of the pressure. It gets me through another page or two of writing!

      Like

  2. So you’re a study in green. Sorry you’re ailing. You’re correct, by the way, about avoiding the chlorine and anti-bacterial crap. Terrible stuff on so many levels, including the stink. Get better soon.

    Like

    • Indeed, green as can be. I can barely stand to be in the cleaning aisle at the store – the fumes are overwhelming. I’m not sure if I’ve just become a namby-pamby about things or if they’re making more toxic products these days. I didn’t used to be this weird.

      Like

      • I think they’re making scents stronger to falsely suggest a sense of strength and protection. Just curious, where do you stand on perfume? I don’t mind a little but can’t stomach anything that I can smell when the person is further than 10 feet away.

        Like

        • I don’t wear it and most kinds make me rather nauseous. I didn’t used to be this way, but so many cheap perfumes have an alcohol based spray (ensures too much is used) and the more expensive ones, people don’t understand to use a fingertip drop and to dab it on lightly. I use natural products now with a hint of light scent or no scent at all. In this day and age of so many sensitivities and allergies, I think it would be easier to give up perfume than risk offending.

          Like

  3. I hope you feel better soon. (It’s easier to express simple statements like that on these occasions. So often I’m at a total loss as to what to say to provide support and encouragement, such as yesterday’s post about families. Always wonderfully written)

    Like

    • Thanks, Diane. I wrote today’s post, almost as a way of apology for yesterday’s rather grim post. I always feel a bit whiny when I’m sick and am pretty humorless. I’ll feel better soon – I’m holding out hope for spring!

      Like

  4. Each time you feel a sneeze coming on, try saying this: Sick snot sucker sits sadly slurping soup. ~~~ feel better soon~~~

    Like

    • I have a feeling saying anything during a sneeze will cause Harry Potter troll-like projectile boogies. Which reminds me, I need some breakfast. Thanks for the good wishes.

      Like

  5. I’m that kind of person everyone hates, the one that never gets sick. I never have to get a flu shot during flu season, ever. But every once in a while, the flu beats the ever-living shit out of me, just to remind me who can call the shots. Just to keep me honest, you know.

    Feel better soon, and remember: no one can ever escape this flu crap. Ever.

    Like

    • I know people like you and do my best to aim a sneeze and cough in their direction. Just to keep them from getting too cocky. You’re welcome.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting in the middle of your Freshly Pressed Party. I laughed when you said you thought the traffic might have been from my interview post, before you knew about the FP post. I wish, Gus, I wish – congrats again!

      Like

  6. So sorry you’re feeling bad. 😦
    I don’t have anything to offer other than to remember you will get over this one, too.

    Like

    • Thanks, Ruth. Sometimes my insistence on living in a cold weather climate really bites me in the ass – all that recirculated indoor air!

      Like

      • That could have something to do with it, she says as the breeze comes through the open windows and billows the curtains out into the room.

        Like

        • As I suck down my kale, ginger, lemon and celery juice in a desperate attempt to boost my immune system, I feel a little bitterness that’s not from the juice. Only 2 more months to go and we’ll be able to open windows too. Dammit.

          Like

  7. I hope you feel better soon. 🙂 My mother came down with a cold yesterday and she was saying “Did I wear my hat when I was outside on Thursday?” And of course I had to go back to explaining that not wearing her hat didn’t cause her to get infected. I was suppose to visit her this morning but while she was sniffing her way over the phone I decided against it!

    Like

    • It’s funny how having a cold brings out all the old wives’ tales. I comfort myself with “Feed a cold, starve a fever.” I don’t care if it’s true or not, I just love my comfort foods when I’m sick – mashed potatoes, soups and lots of ice cream (really soothes the throat!). Good plan not to visit and if you do, don’t use the phone!

      Like

  8. I just commented on another blog from a sick writer. I think I know more sick people (virtually and otherwise) who are sick than not. I love the way people feel the need to ask you whether you take supplements or get flu shots or eat enough green leafy vegetables when they already know you’re sick. Especially because they’re only healthy because of dumb luck.

    Feel better.

    Like

    • I always assume they’re trying to figure out why they’re not sick by a process of elimination. Or to make themselves believe that they have some sort of secret power that will prevent them from getting sick. Like unregulated vitamins and supplements. Thanks for the well wishes!

      Like

  9. Sometimes our best writing comes when we are not at our best! I bet it will be interesting to see what comes out of it. Maybe some of your best stuff.

    Like

    • If there’s a corollary, I’m on track to write the great American novel. Somehow I suspect you are afflicted with optimism. Let’s hope that’s contagious!

      Like

  10. Sorry to hear you’re sick. I remember I used to be ill all the the time, and my dad insisted it was because I didn’t take vitamins. So I started to take them. Did I get sick less? Yes. Did I stop getting sick completely? Not a chance.
    Doesn’t matter how safe you are or how good your diet is, at the end of the day people get sick, and they have to heal the old fashioned way.
    Hope you’re feeling better soon.

    Like

    • I’m sick because I live in Minnesota, have a small child and lick public bathroom faucets. That should make everyone feel a little safer. Thanks for the kind wish!

      Like

  11. I sure hope you feel better soon. It’s miserable being sick. I’m impressed that you are pumping out the posts when you feel lousy.

    Like

  12. Aside from the service to our country, I could have written this post! I’ve been sick for 6 months, going on 7, with bronchitis, then a sinus infection, followed by other infections in various other places that no one wants to read about. As if I needed any more reasons to be a germophobe, I watched Contagion the other night. I’m convinced we’re all going to die from a sinus infection. Glad you’re feeling better this a.m.

    Like

    • I hated to laugh at your comment because I know that sinus infections ARE awful and I had bronchitis the entire month of November. I can handle just about anything else, but trying to function with the constant, miserable pressure in the head is the worst. I don’t watch natural disaster or plague movies – too much other stuff to worry about! I hope you find some relief soon. Do you take supplements? TOTALLY kidding. Hang in there!

      Like

  13. Oh, I hear you!!
    I firmly agree those little vectors we live with are the culprit. Combined with sleep deprivation (whether kid- or hormone-induced), it’s really hard to stay well. Judgy McJudgersons who don’t have kids need not comment on our immune systems.

    Like

    • I think, too, there are just people who are predisposed with better defenses. It’s all a crap shoot. Maybe I should have phrased that differently…

      Like

      • Stress makes a big difference to immune function too, because of what it does to cortisol levels… and waking up in the night is a stressor that makes it hard for the body to heal, etc. Like I need to tell you any of that.
        It’s really just a form of commiseration.

        Like

  14. Never had a flu shot, never had the flu. I’ve come to realize it’s more lifestyle based. I don’t ride public transportation, live alone and generally try to avoid most other humans. I even work at home as often as possible.

    Long ago I knew someone who took care of herself very well. Into health foods, ate well, exercised, the whole nine yards. She was sick constantly. I go through life not caring about any of that and rarely get sick (outside of some chronic or congenital issues).

    I think a lot of that is genetics and luck. We all know those people who’ve smoked all their lives and they live to be 98.

    Like

  15. This made me laugh, thanks for writing in spite of your nyquil-needing state of existing. I hope you are now feeling much better.

    Like

      • LOL! Nyquil now makes a product just for helping one sleep, haven’t we (the consumer) known for years that Nyquil is great for knocking us out? Glad to hear you are feeling better, some of those afflicted, the not so healthy to begin with, are fighting this thing for a month or more!

        Like

%d bloggers like this: