Brad and I have been fighting flu symptoms for a week. First time I noticed anything wrong, I was sitting at a video poker machine with a game that required the JoB strategy, one I have played for almost twenty years and I can practically play in my sleep. Suddenly, I am seeing five cards and I have no idea what I am supposed to do with them. I concentrate really hard and it comes to me – I should hold the pair. I play for about 10 minutes, concentrating hard on each hand, hoping I won't make a silly mistake. Finally I tell Brad, who is sitting beside me, “I know I am getting Alzheimer’s – I just can’t think. And besides I am getting a terrible sore throat. I want to go home.”
When I got home, I was feeling really lousy – but I figured I was just having one of my sinus infection episodes. I get these every once in awhile so I took some sinus medicine and went to bed. The next day I was achy and feeling exhausted so continued to rest.
My doctor sister happened to call and I told her my symptoms and she said it sounded like I had “what was going around – the swine flu.” My daughter called within the hour and was telling me about my granddaughter, Kaitlynn, being down with the swine flu – that it was going around her high school and many students were out.
Hummmmm……what had I been doing on the previous few days. Back to begin another year as a volunteer in a kindergarten in the school down the street. Twenty-three little ones with the usual number of coughs, grubby hands, and runny noses. I guess it was inevitable.
I Googled “swine flu” and found there were 38 million references, but I picked a few and found these possible symptoms: high-grade fever, chills, muscle aches, headaches, sore throat, dry cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and confusion. No one has all of the symptoms, usually just two or three and they last on average 3 or 4 days and most swine flu cases are mild. You can’t positively diagnose swine flu without a lab test but they are assuming that if you have some of these symptoms you probably have it since it is “going around” and it is too early for the regular flu season. I just heard on the local news that there was a sudden jump in the number of swine flu cases here in Vegas – 300 reported in the last few days.
On the 3rd day I was feeling much better and we were happy that I must have had a mild case and I hadn’t given whatever I had to Brad. I worried about his getting the swine flu because most of the deaths reported from it were because of “underlying medical problems.”
Well, our happiness about the situation didn’t last very long. A couple of days later Brad got very sick very suddenly in the middle of the night, spiking a high temperature. Unfortunately we happened to be in a hotel in Laughlin at the time so decided to wait it out. And the next morning he said he felt fine – had sweated out whatever bug or virus had attacked him. However, by the next evening he was running a fever again and feeling achy and exhausted so we drove back to Vegas the next day and saw the doctor today.
At the doctor’s office they took a throat culture for strep and nasal swabs for the swine flu, but by the time the results are back, hopefully he will be well. But if he would have any further complications, they would know better how to treat him.
They say, like for the regular flu, that the tiredness and cough may linger for a couple of weeks after the other symptoms are gone. Seems like the wisest plan of action for us now is to continue with lots of liquids, Tylenol, and a sensible rest schedule.