Christmas music began the day after Thanksgiving. Friends and family did not seem to share my childlike exuberance for the carols and other Christmas music being played round the clock. It was hard to contain my delight at seeing Christmas lights go up on street corners and houses in my neighborhood. I stared at store displays and ads ready to begin shopping. I was excited and ready for this holiday season to arrive. I knew it was going to be a great Christmas this year.
Time seemed to fly as the days went by with Christmas programs, visiting the lights at the park, church services, and spending time with friends and family. We laughed as we whispered the news of finding special gifts for others. We were excited over finding treasures with marked down sticker prices. We drove to stores or church with everyone in the car singing along to the music.
Christmas Eve was spent being part of two church services and then to the home of my friends. We drank the most amazing hot chocolate made in a crock pot while we ate fresh baked sugar cookies with sprinkles. We exchanged gifts, took pictures, and enjoyed being together. Christmas morning with my family included our yearly trip to IHOP for breakfast followed by opening gifts at home.
I received some very special gifts this year. My daughter surprised me with a new camera. It is waterproof and has a dual screen rather like a smart phone; one screen is on the back and one is on the front to take self portraits. A new Mickey Mouse dressed in a Redskins shirt complete with a new blanket was very cute. I added a Tinkerbell fluffy stuffed pillow to my collection. A new Dvd/Blue Ray player from my son means I can now play my blue ray discs. My friend Anna gave me a wonderful mug that said, “Believe in Yourself.” I was very surprised to find a beautiful hand crocheted scarf that I had actually watched Jan working on, never guessing it was for me. These two, along with some other goodies came in a new bag for carrying books when I return to college in a couple of weeks. But I had one more gift to come. It was one I did not want and I could not return it.
My son and family were coming over around 4:00pm. About 3:00pm I started to feel tired. It had been a very busy week and I didn’t home until almost 1:00 am the night before so I wasn’t too concerned. I started to feel a little tightness in my chest and a tickle in my throat. My son and family arrived and we enjoyed time together but I wasn’t my excited holiday self. By the time they left at 7:00pm I started to sense something was going on. My daughter thought I had fever so I went to my room, found the thermometer and it confirmed her suspicion. By bedtime, I hurt all over, had a temperature of 100, and had a horrible headache.
By morning, I had developed a nasty cough and my temperature was now well over 101. I was soon sitting in the doctor’s office. She did a flu test but said it was too early for a positive result because I hadn’t had the fever for over 24 hours. However, she was going to send me home with Tamiflu because Tamiflu works best within the first 24 to 48 hours. Oh, and yes, I did get a flu shot this year.
I am now on day three of Tamiflu and my fever has been gone for 48 hours. I am not feeling nearly as fatigued and the headache is gone. The cough is the last lingering effect. The last time I had the flu was about 12 years ago and I was sick for two weeks. Since then I get the flu shot every year. I am told that getting the flu shot will not always keep you from getting the flu but will make it a milder case if you come down with it. I am grateful for the flu shot and Tamiflu this year. So far none of my family or friends have symptoms of the flu.
I was right about one thing. This was one of the best Christmas holiday seasons I’ve had in a long time. I will cherish the memories of each event and time spent with those special people in my life. Even this nasty flu can’t take away my joy from this Christmas.
Below is a chart to help you decide if you have a cold or the flu. Hope you don’t get either one! I am wishing everyone a healthy start for the coming new year!