A couple of days after Christmas, I came down with flu. I wasn’t sure it actually was flu at first, but several negative covid tests and an illness that just wouldn’t shift convinced me this was the case. I thought I was on the mend until last Tuesday evening when I began to cough up unspeakable horrors from my lungs. I gagged. I wretched. And eventually I was sick. My family began asking me what I wanted to do, but I had no idea. I felt wretched and just wanted to go to my bed and sleep.
Fortunately, my husband wasn’t having it and called the NHS 24 on my behalf. After a bit of back and forth, I was given an appointment for that night. The car ride there wasn’t pleasant. I’d coughed so much and so hard that my back was in agony, and I couldn’t lift my arms over my head without pain.
Thanks to our brilliant NHS, the appointment went well. I was diagnosed with a chest infection. I was given antibiotics and sent home to rest, which I did for several days. I’m back on my feet now and feeling mostly human. I’m still coughing occasionally, and the back pain isn’t completely gone, but I feel a lot better than I did.
I’m so fortunate that I had people around me who care and me and my health, because I had no idea I was as sick as I was. I don’t even want to think about what might of happened if I lived alone with no one to look after me. I would have tried to sleep it off. I would not have sought help. And I’d have been in a world of hurt when/if I realised I needed urgent medical attention.
I’ve often wondered how people get so sick that they get themselves into trouble. Why didn’t they just call the doctor or go to hospital? I now know it’s because they didn’t know how sick they were, and they probably assumed that a couple more painkillers and a good night’s rest would make them better. That was my plan. Thank goodness it was thwarted.