A MinD in MoTown

Oink. Oink.
November 2, 2009, 5:01 pm
Filed under: Just whatever, News Girl, Perhaps I am a bit strange, The swine

The sore throat started Oct. 11. A really dry cough started developing last weekend. And by Friday, the day before Halloween, I’d been regularly hacking up a lung for nearly six days. It was time to see the doctor.

And what was my diagnosis? I HAD THE SWINE!

Not once in those three weeks had it even remotely dawned on me that I had the flu, let alone H1N1. Sure, I spent quite a few days feeling not-so-awesome, but I seemingly attributed every single symptom to something else, causing me to completely ignore the virus stewing in my system. And in that time, the bug that is receiving far too much hype in the media* did its business then went along on its merry way.

That’s right, I ignored the swine flu and it disappeared all on its own, which makes me wonder why exactly people are freaking out about this virus as if it’s going to wipe out half of all humanity. People die every year from the regular flu, yet few people stop to even consider that before talking about the new pandemic facing society. Perhaps we all just need to calm down a bit … and ignore its existence as I did!

When I had body aches, I figured it was my persistence at the gym finally paying off. The migraines? Something typical for me. And the nausea? A result of the headache, of course. The cough and horribly sore throat was just a minor cold I picked up during my Penn State visit. But the fever? Well, I was having some blood-sugar level issues lately, so I just assumed that was to blame considering I felt a bit better after eating.

Not one of the symptoms stuck out to me as something unusual for my daily life mostly because they weren’t all affecting me at the same time. The fever seemed to come and go occasionally in the three weeks. The sore throat slowly became the cough, both never occurring together. The nausea and migraine arrived hand in hand, but my headaches sometimes progress to the point of physical sickness due to the pain. I seriously never even considered something bigger was to blame for how wretched I felt, on and off, since leaving Pennsylvania in mid-October.

Although the doctor cannot definitively confirm that I had H1N1 – whatever virus I did have, that or otherwise, is seemingly gone – she was fairly certain of my diagnosis after we sifted through all the symptoms. Apparently the wretched cough that’s been plaguing me for more than a week now is a lingering side effect of the flu. (Boo hiss, for sure.) After some over-the-counter medicinal suggestions and a prescription for some heavy-dosage cough syrup – to help me sleep because the cough has been preventing me from getting more than two hours of ZzZzs at a time – the doctor told me I wasn’t contagious and could go about my daily business without worry. Sure, I most likely did have H1N1 at some point, but it dissipated over the three weeks and I wasn’t a threat to anyone else, though I can’t help but wonder ever so slightly even anyone caught my mild case of the swine**… Hm…

The news industry has been inundated with H1N1 Influenza A reports for months now. And it seems that regardless of what media outlets say, or don’t say, the public is consistently fearful of this flu, even refusing its vaccine because of supposed potential side effects. And I, for one, find this entirely ridiculous. After all, I didn’t even know I had the swine flu and my immune system bounced back, fighting it off without antibiotics. I bet I could’ve avoided it all – including this annoying cough – if I simply had the vaccine.

A school district employee said it best at last month’s school board meeting, “This is just another type of flu we’re going to have to get used to.” Such an on-point statement. Although this particular strain is new and has caused death and severe sickness among some, the seasonal flu we’ve all become accustomed to at this point has done the same year after year and yet the panic surrounding it seems little. I think it’s about damn time we all take a big step back and look at the situation and realize that many people can have mild versions of H1N1 and be perfectly fine following a few crappy days. Sure, some people are prone to having something like the seasonal flu or H1N1 wreak havoc and cause more damage to their system. Maybe it’s time we all cease the fear and go about our daily lives, just listing this particular flu as another potential demon of winter. Because really, it’s not much more than that if you ask me.

* For me to technically be part of the media and say this is quite a big deal folks.
** I know, for certain, that the boyfriend doesn’t have any version of the flu and he is, by far, the most likely candidate. Actually, he started feeling terribly ill last Wednesday and by Thursday night, he thought he had the flu. He went to the doctor Friday morning to find out what he could do about it, but they said he didn’t have the flu. He had strep throat. Upon hearing that, I assumed that was what had been bothering me for the three weeks so I made a doctor’s appointment. But I didn’t have strep – I even asked for a throat culture to ensure I did not. So we were both sick, with different things, and didn’t pass it on to the other. Bizarre, right?


19 Comments so far
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Considering the roomie had it and ignored it as you did, not all that surprising. The media does admittedly have a bad track record when it comes to overblown hype.

The line about it being another flu to get used to is pretty much exactly what our principal said on the matter. With one of my students down with H1N1 (getting better) and another about ready to come back to school I am not as worried as some people rather rudely insist I should be.

Should people get the vaccine? I think so. But people should be immunized against regular flu if they are nervous about getting that, too. It’s just another thing that we all have to become accustomed to. I clearly don’t see the big deal in it, and your roommate is not the only person I’ve heard of who, like me, ignored having it all together.

Comment by Kendall

Glad you’re feeling better regardless of what you have. That’s the important part.

Very true, and thank you! =)

Comment by Ben

I hate how people are getting so worked up about the H1N1. Sure, people can die from it but people can also die from strep throat. You can die from complications of any illness. Suck it up, rest like your supposed to, stay hydrated and you’ll be fine! 🙂

I hope your cough is better sooner than later!

Ditto on the cough. It’s at least a more productive cough now, rather than just the dry one of a week ago. That’s gotta be a good sign, right? Ha.

Comment by Melissa

well I’ve been following the progression of and now, hopefully, the disappearance of your cough. glad you’re on the road to feeling better!!

Thanks hun, and I’m glad to be on that road, too. Now, if just this damn cough would go… Ha.

Comment by thatShortChick

Glad you’re feeling better.

Thank you!

Comment by Ashley

Damn girl, H1N1? We had three cases at work, two in my department. The swine is coming for me. Poor girl I manage though had it and she was really scary sick.

I suppose I definitely got lucky and had a pretty mild case of H1N1. And I heard from my doctor that they expect 60 percent of all Americans to have the swine flu at some point this winter… So the odds are certainly in no one’s favor.

Comment by Jessica

Hooray for not dying from the piggy flu. Or for that matter, even really stopping to be sick. Congrats!

HOORAY!!! Hehe.

Comment by TOPolk

I am so glad you did not die from the swine flu. I think the media sometimes blows things way out of proportion. My school has been overloaded with cases that some people are walking around with masks around their mouth. Crazy right? I’m very glad you are feeling better.

When I went to visit Penn State last month – which is where I assume I caught it – there were people all over campus with masks. It was batty. Even though I’m part of the media, I can definitely see it’s being blown way out of proportion here. People just need to calm down and relax.

Comment by Sarah Nicole

That’s a little scary but I’m glad to hear that you’re better! Just for the sake of it though…


Hahahaha. I hadn’t seen that!

Comment by Maddy

Wow, that’s crazy! I’ve actually known a girl in one of my classes who had it and there was a mom of one of my 2-year-old’s who had it AND my mom’s co-workers daughter had it. Oh, haha, and three people that one of the mom’s of my 2-year-olds who had it.


But everyone survived. Everyone is getting too overwhelemed by it and needs to just slow down and realize that it’s a treatable illness. Yes, some people do die from it. But, for the most part, it’s treatable.

So happy you’re OK!

People die from SOOOOO many different illnesses. I really don’t think we should be concentrating so much on one that’s kind of starting to become a norm and, like you said, is treatable. And I’m happy I’m okay, too, ha.

Comment by Stephany

the swine!

whatever it ended up being at least you are feeling better

Oink. I mean, yes, at least I am…right now, ha.

Comment by alexa - cleveland's a plum

I’m glad you’re feeling better. You’re right–it’s just a flu.

Just a flu, for sure. And sometimes it moves so silently you barely realize it’s there, ha.

Comment by Kimwithak

Clearly, you and the BF need to be making out more.

Is that what I was supposed to be taking from this?

YES! That’s exactly what you are supposed to be taking! And that plan will be put into action immediately.

Comment by LiLu

As another part of the media, yeah, way too much was made of the swine flu, considering it’s really just another flu. But parents were going bananas worrying over it. Sorry to see you got it. You can tell your grandkids about it one day.

P.S. Considering your comment about Marisa Miller today, please check out http://ydblogz.com/realblogger/?p=6249 and thank me later.

Ah yes, I can tell my grandkids about the great swine epidemic of 2009. Swine of ’09. It has a nice ring to it. And that link better be work safe. If I get fired, you owe me one newspaper job.

Comment by Andy

We’re still too scared of the swine over here too but wow girl, I’ve never heard of ignoring the swine and it goes away by itself. SOme people get really sick because of it, you must be really strong 🙂

I would certainly not say I’m strong, ha. But I’ve heard of a lot of people – surprisingly – getting over it without it being diagnosed. Some even use the word “silent.” Who knows.

Comment by andhari


A lot of times people forget that a lot of illnesses are pyschosomatic. If you think you’re going to die or whatever…a lot of times it does happen.

Glad you’re okay hun.

Ha. I’m really glad I didn’t seriously think I was dying then. Eep!

Comment by Felicia

I’m glad you didnt die.

That might be one of the nicest things you’ve ever said to me.

Comment by Matt

18 days!?!?!?! OMG i am so sorry that is insanely horrible 😦
feel better!!!

And we’re at 19 now… =/ But thanks hun!

Comment by novelista barista

That’s absolutely ridiculous, and I am SO glad that you’re better. I cannot even imagine, but if the same thing happened to me, I would follow the same form of thinking. And I wouldn’t be worried about it too much. (Unless one of my co-workers sent me home, like today.)

I had to work. That’s what I kept thinking. So I couldn’t afford to be sick, which means overlooking it all was pretty easy, ya know? If my editor said to leave, I would’ve… But nobody told me to go, so I guess I didn’t even appear that sick to anyone else, ha.

Comment by E.P.

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