And then there’s the flu

Oh, Lord – looks like I’ve got it. Crazy aches and pains all over, splitting headache, sore throat, major chest congestion, and a dry cough that doesn’t feel very productive. I actually landed in the emergency room last night, intensely dehydrated – they took a bunch of blood, hooked me up to an IV and pumped me full of fluids – two bags emptied quickly into my system. The non-narcotic painkiller they added to the first bag of fluids seemed to take the edge off the pain, but other than that, it didn’t dramatically change anything. I’ve been fighting off a spiking fever – it heads in the wrong direction really quick — from 100.6 at 10:30 a.m. to 103.7 by 2:30 p.m.


But at least all the blood panels came back okay. I’m actually doing really well on paper, so this feeling that I’m within easy reach of the River Styx is all perception. No, I’m actually not dying, no matter how it feels.

The doctor says I should stay away from work for a week, which pretty much blows my paid sick time out of the water. I’ll see if I can work something out with my boss… maybe work from home for that time. I’m hoping that the recent departure of the uber-boss will make them more accommodating.  There’s a good chance of that, actually. And anyway, maybe that means that this week I can get some of the outstanding issues taken care of that I’ve been meaning to, for weeks and weeks, but haven’t had the chance to tend to.

We’ll see how I feel. Right now, I feel like total crap. But the Pedialyte with some juice seems to really be helping me. I feel like a dried-out sponge just soaking it up. Good stuff. I just don’t want to end up back in the ER.

Drink and rest and hang out in the bathroom… rinse, repeat. Pop some pills and get some sleep… rinse, repeat. I suppose this isn’t so terrible, when I look past the pain and agony. It’s a time to kick back and take care of myself and take advantage of the doctor’s orders to not do much at all. The changes at work are happening fast and furious, and I just don’t know if I’m on board with them. I joined the company 2-1/2 years ago because it was local and small and had a real “family” feeling. Now that’s pretty much gone. And I may need to do a bunch of traveling, which does not appear to me at all. The idea of hopping on a plane every other month and flying all over creation… yeah, no thanks.

It may be for others, but not for me. Seriously, I have better things to do with my time than sit on a plane surrounded by super-bug-carriers from all across the planet.

So it goes. The one nice thing is that I’ll have some time to just chill. Sleep. Relax. Catch up with myself and see what’s going on with me. And blog. And catch up on blog reading. And sleep. Just digest it all… Even if I am sick.

You know, it’s funny – having so many issues post-TBI (s) seems to have fostered in me the ability to function and keep going, even in the face of some pretty daunting symptoms. Learning how to function normally throughout the day, when my noise and light sensitivity was off the charts and my head felt like a jack-hammer was permanently attached to my temples, has helped me to function normally even in the face of some pretty overwhelming illnesses. For example, I’m typing this up and I’m feeling fairly coherent, even though I feel like death warmed over, my head is splitting, and I can barely breathe.  Somehow, I’ve learned to navigate life with all this incredibly intrusive stuff going on, and I’ve learned how to do it pretty well, if I say so myself.

Things aren’t always going to be perfect. In fact, I think it’s safe to say, things will never be perfect… for long. But we can at least keep going, keep moving, and do our best to take good care of ourselves through it all.

And on that note, back to bed.

Author: brokenbrilliant

I am a long-term multiple (mild) Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI or TBI) survivor who experienced assaults, falls, car accidents, sports-related injuries in the 1960s, '70s, '80s, and '90s. My last mild TBI was in 2004, but it was definitely the worst of the lot. I never received medical treatment for my injuries, some of which were sports injuries (and you have to get back in the game!), but I have been living very successfully with cognitive/behavioral (social, emotional, functional) symptoms and complications since I was a young kid. I’ve done it so well, in fact, that virtually nobody knows that I sustained those injuries… and the folks who do know, haven’t fully realized just how it’s impacted my life. It has impacted my life, however. In serious and debilitating ways. I’m coming out from behind the shields I’ve put up, in hopes of successfully addressing my own (invisible) challenges and helping others to see that sustaining a TBI is not the end of the world, and they can, in fact, live happy, fulfilled, productive lives in spite of it all.

2 thoughts on “And then there’s the flu”

  1. I’m sorry you’re not well. You have mastered working through brain injury and that’s way you can still type and read through a serious flu and fevers! Most people can barely make it through the flu. Compensating daily is part of what you do full-time … it’s your life!

    Right now make sure you get plenty rest, fluids, and chicken noodle soup! If at any time you believe it is something more than the flu or have new symptoms, go back to ER! It’s probably the flu, just don’t ever doubt yourself if you ever think differently. I know this flu season is horrible. How is your spouse doing? Take care and stay safe.


  2. Thanks – yes, this is very “interesting”. I have been sleeping a lot — I sleep for anywhere from 2-6 hours, then I’m awake for another couple of hours, then I’m back to sleep again, which I have to say feels like heaven. I’ve got all my meds, now, which is helping – no more 103.7 degree fever, thank you very much. They did a bunch of blood testing to make sure it wasn’t something else. It might actually be acute bronchitis that was exacerbated by dehydration. I’ve got of history of bronchitis that almost goes into pneumonia, so I’m watching it very carefully… drinking lots of fluids, especially Pedialyte with juice, which is my second favorite thing, after sleep. And chicken noodle soup. More nectar of the gods… My spouse is doing okay – they have been sick for months and haven’t been able to really shake it, so me getting sick and possibly being contagious and setting them back, is not helping. I’m wearing my mask every time I leave my “cave” at the back of the house, and I’m limiting how much I do anywhere outside my room, so I think that is helping. And washing hands… always washing hands…

    Well, it happens. Oh, well. At least it gives me time to rest.


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