You know what’s not fun? Stomach flu. It’s not fun when you’re a child and it’s SURE as hell not fun when you’re an adult.
Today I went to work and I felt fine. About an hour later I thought, hmm, my stomach, it feels kind of icky, like an elevator with the cables cut. That’s a funny feeling. Wonder what’s up with that?
About two hours later, I realized, oh. OH. Huh. I think I’m dying, so I’m going to go home now. And I did. And I slept for FIVE STRAIGHT HOURS. And I was supposed to go to a show tonight but I decided that was a bad idea because although I felt better after ALL THE SLEEPING ZOMG, I wasn’t quite sure I wouldn’t feel like death again in the middle of the show. And the show’s half an hour from my house. And I kind of want to hang out on the couch tonight and loaf with a warm cat curled up to my leg.
Since I have work tomorrow I have to be better by then. There’s not really an option. Calling out sick tomorrow would throw off the whole schedule and make people very upset and I have this crazy work ethic, I don’t know. I might be a little nuts.
This started me thinking. I’m a generally healthy person. Well, other than long-range crap that I take medication for. Those aren’t things that are going to kill me, probably. At least for a very long time. But it’s the short-term things that really stand out in your mind, right? I was talking to someone who’d broken a bone yesterday and comparing war stories and thinking about the various discomfort-scales of things that have happened to me in the past.
Yes, shush, this is what I do for fun. Isn’t this what YOU do for fun?
I’ve only had the official flu once, I think. I’ve had colds more times than I can count – I mean, who hasn’t? – but when I had the flu last Christmas I pretty much wanted to die. It was two and a half full days of sleeping, one day of being up but WANTING to be sleeping, and then about two weeks of feeling like death after the main attraction was done. Needless to say, I’ll be getting my flu shot this year. At one point I tried to take a shower but couldn’t stand up long enough so kind of sat/squatted on the bathtub floor and dozed and cried a little until the water ran cold. I think if they want to torture people in Guantanamo they could just give them the flu. It’d be better than waterboarding, sincerely. WORST THING EVER RATING: 6/10
When I was in college, I attempted to put glow-in-the-dark stars on my ceiling. To reach the ceiling, I stood on a chair I’d found on the porch. The reason, I found out later, that chair was on the porch was because it was broken. I didn’t find that out until it collaped under me. I smashed my hipbone and elbow on the floor. “Stupid clumsy me!” I said, and went about my day. Until about an hour later, when I passed out at the mattress store where my roommate was shopping for new bedding. A few hours spent in the ER told me that yes, stupid clumsy me had broken my elbow on the way down. And that is how glow-in-the-dark stars tried to kill me. The next six weeks saw me in a sling (which was SUPER-CLASSY) because they can’t cast a broken elbow, apparently, and I have a bad reaction to codeine and it makes me immediately fall asleep and drool all over and sometimes sleepwalk, so I couldn’t use that as much as I wanted, and there wasn’t a lot of sleeping for a couple weeks because I’d roll over on my arm and wake up saying “OMG OW OW OW!” Also people had to cut up my food for me because I only had one hand that worked. All in all, I do not recommend breaking limbs. It’s not good times. WORST THING EVER RATING: 8/10
Just after grad school, one night after going out for a very nice dinner, I had a stomachache. I thought maybe I ate too much or something. Stomachache turned into SHARP KNIVES STABBING ME and the things that DIDN’T make me feel better were vomiting, a bath, weeping copiously, or screaming obscenities. AGAIN with the trip to the ER, and they hooked me up to a drip of some sort of painkiller and THAT was nice and then ran a bunch of tests and apparently I had kidney stones and the only thing to help with those is lots of ibuprofen and cranberry juice and you have to let them work through your system. I don’t even remember how long that took but I remember it was NOT FUN TIMES. Worst pain of my whole life. Sincerely. I’ve read that people compare kidney stones to childbirth; if that’s the case, and I ever have a kid, they’re going to have to knock me the hell OUT. WORST THING EVER RATING: 10/10
I’m really terrible on ice. Just the worst. Really ungainly. So I walk like a careful penguin. One day when I first moved here I hit a patch of very tricky ice and down I went right on my caboose and I thought I was fine until I sat down in my car and I was like, huh, that’s a little ouchy. “A little ouchy” turned into “OMG WTF BBQ” over the next couple of weeks and apparently I’d bruised my damn TAILBONE when I fell so I was sitting down like an old person and I think I needed one of those circular pillows people get when they have butt surgery or something. OUCH. WORST THING EVER RATING: 4/10
In college, I may have had more to drink than was advisable. On a regular basis. One night, we decided to walk to Denny’s (which, in an intelligent marketing move, was right next to the campus – I must have eaten my weight in chain-restaurant diner food over my two years of living on campus, sincerely) and the grass was wet and I slipped. I didn’t FALL, I just SLIPPED. And I twisted my foot a little, and you know, whatever, I’d been drinking. But the next day my foot was all black and blue and it hurt to walk on and it got all swollen up and I’m not quite sure why, exactly, but I totally never went to the health center about it, and eventually it healed but I still have a bump in the middle of the top of my foot where the bone was broken and never healed right. (I have also broken each of my small toes at least once, if not more than once, over the years, because I tend to stub them on things. I’m not smooth, yo. Both of my little toes are hellaciously crooked.) WORST THING EVER RATING: 2/10
When I lived overseas for a semester in college, I was the lucky recipient of mono, which meant I spent pretty much a month or six weeks or so sleeping. I would get up (well, most days) and sleepwalk to class and go home and sleep. We only had classes Tuesdays-Thursdays, giving us 4-day weekends, so I would get in bed after my last class on Thursday and sleep, with brief getting-up times for bathroom breaks and maybe some toast, for FOUR STRAIGHT DAYS. I’ve never been so tired in my life. My roommates got worried about me and they’d be like, “are you OK?” when they’d see me awake and I’d mumble “mmrph toast sleep bed tired” and go back to sleep. It was a very long stretch of feeling like I was a zombie. I was not a fan. WORST THING EVER RATING: 7/10
I caught chicken pox from my brother when I was much too old to have chicken pox. Third grade, I think. If you get it at that age, it hits you very hard, and you get lots of scars. So my mom would scream at me constantly “DON’T SCRAAAAATCH!” and I’d have to pretty much sit on my hands to stop myself because SO ITCHY. Chicken pox is not a fun illness. I actually was very lucky and I think I only have two scars from it, one on my forehead and one…well, nevermind where the other one is. BAD TOUCH BAD TOUCH. What’s fun about chicken pox is it can come back as shingles when you’re a grownup, and I had that happen a few years ago. Good times, by which I mean the opposite of such. WORST THING EVER RATING: 3/10
So, in the battle of worst things ever, KIDNEY STONES WIN. I recommend you stay away from kidney stones. How? Hell, I don’t know, what do I look like, a medical professional?
I’m going back to bed now because STOMACH FLU. I have the best furry nurse. He is quite sure he will purr me healthy. I’m not convinced he can’t. He’s a very good purrer. He’d win in the purring Olympics, for sure.