Yesterday I woke up with a massive sore throat.
“I’m sick!” I croaked at Esteban, which carried along with it the unspoken request that he would take the dog out for her morning constitutional, take the garbage and the recyclables out the curb and then drive the dog to day care. There was a lot packed into those words and it’s a card I don’t often play, so he took care of those duties like a champ. While he was off making our lives go, I slowly rose from bed with shaking limbs and felt the weight of the world pressing on my head. Sore throat, fever, body aches and a headache? Yeah, not good sir, not good.
I toughed it through the work day, more or less relying upon the kindess of my coworkers (I work with rock stars, seriously) but knowing that my throat only hurts like that for exactly one reason: Strep. I felt lousier as the day progressed, but when I started sneezing and sniffling after work and felt the energy basically drain from my body, I knew that I had to go in for a throat culture.
The nice thing about going to Urgent Care during the dinner hour is that it’s pretty empty. I got a ton of prescriptions, including two that needed In Person attention at the pharmacy, and headed off to the drug store. There, I wandered around the building like a space cadet, waiting for my various pills and syrups to be measured and allotted.
There is nothing more fun than wandering around Walgreens when you’re feverish. There are only like eight aisles at my neighborhood store, but I got lost at least twice. I basically just looked at everything with the mindset of a child. The Christmas aisle was especially delightful. I contemplated buying a very small, very bad replica of the leg lamp from A Christmas Story and then spied some gumdrops on a stick, just out in the open where anyone could feast upon them. I almost popped one in my mouth (even though I hate gum drops) because they looked delicious when it slowly dawned upon me that they were just Christmas decorations meant to look like gum drops. On a stick. That’s when it dawned on me that I probably shouldn’t have driven myself there, because damn.
When you have a fever, the best entertainment in the world can be had by just standing in front of the magazine rack. So many exclamation points! So many smiling pop stars and perfect teeth. The promise of a better humanity is laid out in 20 point font on those glossy covers. It’s a beautiful thing.
They finally called my name to give me my various drugs, where I found that I had abandoned my medical records up at the counter. The pharmacist is happily an old hat at recognizing the signs of extreme fever, so she just added it to my medication bundle and sent me on my way, along with my random purchases of a giant Flintstones vitamins, cashew Turtles candies, a Consumer Reports magazine and a box of fancy Kleenex. Shopping with a fever is not recommended if you are trying to save money.
I went back home and then sat on the couch staring at nothing until Esteban gently pointed out that it wasn’t lame to go to bed at 8:30 if you are sick. Good thing I keep that boy around, because otherwise I’d just sit up trying to keep my cred legit to the point of ridiculousness.
I feel a little badly about the entire Christmas shenanigans. Right now, I have done absolutely nothing around the house. I had planned on putting up a tree this week but between my being ill and Esteban shopping for a new vehicle, there has not been a single stocking hung nor fairy light strung. And I’m worse today (this blog entry courtesy of the sweet spot of my cold meds. Apparently behind-the-counter Sudafed makes you either a zombie or falling asleep except for one glorious hour when you can more or less function normally. And I can’t take the Prednisone that will make me feel better until they determine that it’s not strep, which won’t be until tomorrow) to the point that I doubt I could even make it down the basement stairs in one piece, much less hauling our cavalcade of seasonal merriment up the post WWII ridiculously unsafe steps. Fa la la la laaaaacrrrrrrroak!
And tomorrow, I pack. I should be getting the official clearance that I am not contagious tomorrow (here’s hoping that I’m wrong and that my Death Throat is not indeed strep) which means I leave for a BFF weekend in Everwood on Friday, followed by a week in Boston and then the beginning of our Christmas hijinx in Chicago, where Esteban will meet up with me and we will trip the light fantastic.
Just writing that paragraph has worn me out. Apparently the window of opportunity for my Sudafed clarity is closing.