Woe is me! I’m sick…

After coming back from vacation in early February (blog image is from Disney World Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge), I was looking forward to that 2-3 week period when you feel relaxed before life catches back up to you. That never happened. I’ve been sick for the last 2+ weeks with a bad sinus infection since my return. I’m thankful that it isn’t COVID but it’s really drained me. And I’m at the point now that I’m exhausted physically and mentally, and I’m sick of being sick.

I guess I should consider myself lucky. We travelled on 4 airplanes; we sailed on the 9th largest cruise ship in the world for 7 days; and then finished up our trip with 4 days at Disneyworld. I literally exposed myself to thousands of people. I’m lucky that it’s not COVID and I’m lucky that I didn’t get sick while on vacation. And I realize that COVID has hit people much harder for a longer period of time.

Still, all of that does change the fact that I’m sick now and it’s getting me down.

It’s been a bit of a strange flu for me. It started with my sinuses dripping into my throat, causing a lot of coughing and clear phlegm. In past years, I’ve been hit with something similar, and I end up coughing for weeks. It’s brutal. Every time I get sick, I’m worried that the cough is coming back. I missed enough time at work a couple of years ago that I had to go on short term disability. And quite honestly, over the last couple of days, it feels like a bad cough flu.

However, this time it shifted into a full on sinus attack. This has led to: shortness of breath, nasal drip into my throat and thru my nose, fuzzy brain, dizziness, and difficulty sleeping. I haven’t been able to work out for 2 weeks. My walking has been very limited. Essentially, I’m stuck at home exhausted 24×7. Work has been extremely busy, especially after almost 2 weeks of vacation, so I’ve been working thru the exhaustion as best as I can.

The stages of being sick

Being sick for me has a few stages:

  1. Oh no! I hope it’s not COVID!! – I think this is the same for everyone.
  2. Oh no! I hope this isn’t the long-term coughing flu that I’ve had in the past. It’s awful and last time I missed a ton of work, it sucked and I went on short-term disability.
  3. Ok. This isn’t too bad. It’s something new.
  4. Well, it’s been over a week and I’m not getting better; I might be getting worse still. Do I need to go to the doctor yet?
  5. Ok, I’ve been to the doctor and I have meds but I’m still not getting better.
  6. I’m sick of being sick. How long is this going to last? I think this could be that awful cough flu I hate!
  7. Thank goodness I’m getting better.
  8. Oh no! I’m getting worse again. Am I actually getting better or feeling worse today? – this is me today.
  9. OMG! I’m finally getting better.
  10. I’m better. Screw you flu!!!!

I’m having trouble being thankful and grateful. I’m tired of sitting around doing nothing. It’s so boring being sick. I have nasal spray, meds and Advil Sinus to try to make things more comfortable.

The impacts of being sick

Being this sick for weeks is hard to handle. I imagine that anyone with COVID went thru something similar. Sometimes we forget that being sick is much more than just a physical ailment. It really impacts me mentally.

  1. Fear of COVID. Yes, every additional day that I’m sick, I fear that it’s COVID. I keep testing negative but I still fear it’s COVID. Does it really matter? I don’t know. In theory, I haven’t had COVID yet, so I don’t know what it’s like. I imagine it’s worse than I’ve felt, but I don’t know for sure. COVID really is a drain mentally every time we get sick. It’s hanging over us like a bad storm cloud.
  2. I can’t workout. This impacts my entire well being. I feel less healthy physically. I lose a stress reduction outlet. I may experience weight gain and loss of physical performance. It’s a huge setback to my health, wellness and training plans!
  3. Walks outside have been minimal especially with this cold weather. The cold weather is really hard on my lungs. I don’t get outside. My dogs don’t get walks. My mental health really suffers when I lose my walks. Getting outside and walking is proven to be great for your health.
  4. Physically, my body is “off”. I’m not working out. I’m spending more time in a computer chair and if I’m not there, I’m on the couch or in bed. I don’t have energy for my nightly stretching exercises. Different muscles and joints are sore. I’m coughing a ton which starts to be really hard on your chest, ribs and core.
  5. My social life is non-existent. I don’t want to share my illness with anyone. Since COVID hit, it’s become “normal” to stay at home by yourself if you are sick. The cost of this is pretty high though if you are sick for extended periods of time. Luckily, COVID has also taught us that you can keep in touch with people via social media, phone calls, zooms, etc. Still, I’m missing my friends and family and I miss doing things.
  6. I’m down on life. I think that depressed might be a strong word, but I’m feeling down. I’m having issues keeping up with daily gratitude. I’m not up for daily meditation. I’m cancelling any social engagements like virtual golf on Saturdays, so I’m missing out on some of my favorite things of the week. I’m feeling sorry for myself. And there isn’t much I can do about it other than wait out this cold.
  7. Sweating the small stuff. When I am down, and things are tough, every little thing that goes wrong is catastrophic. I’m angry at little things so quick. Things that I worked so hard to ignore now annoy me in an instance.
  8. Woe is me! Life is great, but I’m sick. Poor me. It’s really hard mentally to be in such a low place when I should be grateful for my life. I’m stuck in an endless loop of feeling sorry for myself, and then being hard on myself for feeling down.
  9. I’m super behind in blogging. I wanted to do a couple of posts already this year. Perhaps one on my top 10 brands/products for 2023. And a travel blog from our trip. But here I am writing a blog about being sick. *BARF*

What can I do?

I mean this is my current reality. I’m not going to sit around and feel sorry for myself 24×7.

  1. Go to the doctor if I feel it’s necessary. And I did last week. I’m on meds which aren’t helping much. But I also got a nasal spray for my sinuses that really helps. Sadly, I’ve been thru something similar to this every other year. Nothing seems to help. I just suffer for 4-6 weeks, and then it passes.
  2. Stay hydrated. Hydration is always important and even more so when you are sick. I’m drinking plenty of fluids.
  3. Get lots of sleep. This has been hard for me. I’m not sleeping at night very well. And I’m too busy at work to afford time off during the day. I finally took a sick afternoon yesterday and slept. Feeling better today.
  4. Grind it out. I’m working my gratitude journal even if I don’t feel like it. It helps. If I only find 2 things I’m grateful for instead of 3 or 4, that’s ok. I write down 2.
  5. Find little wins. Get comfort food. Nothing tastes better than comfort food when you are sick. Rejoice if you get a good night’s rest. Be thankful for sinus and cold meds. Be grateful for your supportive spouse.
  6. Find something to occupy yourself. Watch your favorite show on stream. Play a favorite video game. Watch uplifting movies.

Wrap up

I don’t mind getting sick. Usually it’s the body telling us to slow down and take a break. But being sick for weeks at a time is rough whether it’s COVID, the flu, or something else. I admire people that can go thru sickness and treatments and remain a positive presence.

So if you haven’t heard from me, I’m sorry. I’ve been sick and feeling sorry for myself. Yes, you can help. You can help anyone who is sick or going thru a rough patch. Please check up on them. A kind phone call or DM is appreciated to know that we matter in your life and you’re thinking about us.

I appreciate my family and friends that have been checking up on me. It means a lot!!

In the meantime, I hope that you are happy and healthy. And if you know someone that is sick or going thru treatments or recovering from an injury, take a minute and call them. Say hi. Let them know that you care.

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