HOT OFF THE PRESSES
Stop what you are doing right now
I have a cold. I am talking bogies, phlegm, sneezes and a lost voice, sort of cold. Well, I do not have it now, I had it two weeks ago, but I did not think to tell you about it at the time because it as just a cold, and unless you are an attention seeking weakling, a cold is not a big deal. Everything about my cold felt familiar, which is to be expected given the fact that I am 29 years old and I thus have been around bugs and other peoples’s snot for 29 years. You know what I am talking about, the colds, they are pretty common.
With this cold, my first cold post transplant, I did not want to create a fuss, why would I? After all the side effects I have experienced, I actually find the symptoms of a cold quite pleasant, for they do not distinguish my body from everybody else’s the way everything else does. You know what I experienced with it, because you have had one too, there is nothing sinister about a blocked nose and a croaky voice is super sexy, unless you cough something up with it.
In my mind, having a cold was good, I have longed stopped washing my hands when I touch a door that is not in the compound. Opening up my body to some lesser bugs, builds up my immune system, right? I do not want to live in a protective bubble. I am far too lazy and far too restless in equal measure.
Even though I thought my cold was no big deal, from others, I sensed panic. Oh my gawd, beware of the snot, she has cancerrrrr and a compromised immune system! At first I was told to monitor it (I went and sat in rooms full of strangers and air conditioning instead), then I had to postpone my counselling because other cancer patients do not like colds, and then, I got quarantined and put on antibiotics as a precaution. Normal people don’t get that, they get Lemsip or the supermarket equivalent if they are feeling thrifty. I experienced vigilance.
So the moral of this story is that I cannot just have a cold. I cannot suffer in silence. I have to ring a bell and wear a sandwich board, and winter is coming…. Sniff, sniff.