This is apparently the month of flu in Latvia. Last Wednesday morning I was finally enthusiastically cajoled into getting a flu shot at work. The secretary had sent an office-wide e-mail the week before, came in Wednesday morning to ask if really nobody wanted to get a flu shot, then told us we had until what I understood to be the 12th to decide if we wanted the shot or not. Turns out the 12 was actually for the o’clock version, at what time she scampered back into our room with a “Anybody? Anybody? You! [pointing to me] I know YOUUUU want a flu shot! C’mon, c’mon!” Supposedly there needed to be a minimum of 10 people to take the shot for it to count for something. Either way, it was “free”, so I went for it. Then, come Friday, I have a scratchy throat. Then Saturday I have half a voice. Sunday my entire back feels like I’ve been doing non-stop weights to strengthen my spine. HOLD UP. Not entirely fair. I was told by the nurse that the vaccine would take about 10 days to kick in and, at the time, I wanted to jokingly comment that a virus then had 10 days to get a move on and set up shop in my body. I guess I would have been more than accurate.
I’ve always thought that the “If you get a flu shot you’re going to get sick anyway” thing was always a myth, falling in the list of “medical myths started to make you feel bad about doing something ‘right’ for your body” — a list my mother (love you, mom!) cites frequently. But then my father said the same thing, that the flu shots just have the adverse reaction in some people. And, if you think about it, it makes sense. They inject you with the virus to help your body learn to fight that virus, but for some people it’s just a free and easy trip for the virus into your system. I was also once told by a doctor in the States that I should always consider getting the vaccines because, as a sufferer of asthma, flu leading to coughing leading to wheezing could land me in the hospital.
Hence why I’m staying home for the second day in a row. Monday I took the day off completely, no work, no answering my mobile. I slept, ate some hot and sour chinese soup, caught up a bit on TV through the Internet, slept some more and drank liquids. Today I’m working from home becuase 1) I slept badly, thinking from previous experience that if I sleep on my side instead of my back, my lungs won’t have to work harder and I’ll be able to breathe. Unfortunately for me, this time around it took me too long to figure out that I SHOULD sleep on my back, or stand, to be able to breathe normally. 2) As such, I’ve been using my inhaler a bit too much (don’t worry, I’m pacing myself…) and I don’t need people at work either calling an ambulance because they think I’ll keel over any second or thinking I’m an addict. 3) I like to NOT be the person who comes to work all infected, licking doorknobs and sneezing in other’s faces. If I’m sick, I’m smart enough to work from home where the only other people at risk are my flatmate and the cat. I’m also lucky in that my job is flexible location wise, so I can work from home if really need be and still get something done.
That being said, the Internets are great. It’s likely I’ll suck it up and go out to buy some kind of Vick’s Vapo Rub similar item, as internal medicines aren’t doing much for me right now and I promised my grandmother, “No cocktails.”