Sailor Man came down with the plague this past weekend, and I have to say, in the 8 years we’ve been together, I’ve never seen him so sick. And while I did my best to nurse him back to health, I also made him sleep on the couch, imbibe any drug I could get my hands on, and I personally washed my extremities raw trying to prevent the onset of this disease.

Heartless? Hardly. I have year-end accounting to finish for work, taxes to file, two research papers to write and finals next week. That, and we also leave for Iceland the second I’m done with my last exam. Quite simply, I didn’t have time to get sick.

But sick I got and the fun began. Luckily I didn’t come down with the plague to the severity that Sailor Man did, but I certainly take a different approach to healing than he does. Whereas Sailor Man kept a steady diet of soup, OJ, aspirin, and water in his person, I have kept a steady stream of drugs, pizza, and whiskey in my system. Lot’s of whiskey. It’s that old Irish “scorched-earth” policy of good health rearing it’s lovely, lovely, beautiful and gorgeous head again.

When it comes to being ill, I’ll do just about anything and try any crack-pot method if it means I’ll get better faster. Hell, I’d dance naked in the snow if there existed at least one sketchy report that it would cure me instantly. Normally though, and I don’t recommend this to everyone, I’ll boil myself down in the hottest bath I can tolerate, then imbibe a gallon of tea, and then a couple shots of whiskey for good measure. Later, there will be even more whiskey, the mandatory dosage of ill-advised drug consumption, and then sleep. It. Is. Fabulous. And no one can convince me otherwise.

The one time I decided to go voodoo-free when fallen ill, I promptly came down with pneumonia. A course of action I’ll never take again.

This illness has however prompted and interesting discussion on the weird tribal rituals we employ when faced with the common cold. Some classmates have recommended various drugs, professors recommend different accoutrements, and Sailor advocates staying the hell away from me as I am one lousy patient.

In the end, a lot of these symptoms and perceived agony may just be in my head. It would then naturally follow that a lot of these so-called cures maybe just figments of my imagination as well. While I’m confident in my body’s ability to heal itself, I am equally confident in my mind’s ability to sabotage the effort if all proper rites and rituals are not dilligently adhered to.

Weird? Yes. Ridiculous? Most certainly. But it makes me feel better. In my mind anyway.

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