Actually, it's the OTHER F-word: the FLU. I brought it home as a little present from the teaching-in-Texas gig. (Chilled, then broiled, chilled, then broiled as I moved from air conditioning to the outside -- I don't know how they do it. Even the hallways in the hotel were sweatboxes.)
Fortunately, after two-plus weeks spent dragging myself around and doing the bare minimum to get by...I seem to be doing better. Certainly I'm not perched over the toilet anymore. We were getting to be good friends, Mr. Porcelain and I, with uncomfortable reminders that I wasn't cleaning and vacuuming as closely as I should. (Yuck.)
So how do you get rid of this unpleasant house guest? Here's what helped:
*REST. Admitting that I was sick -- and it was okay to just lay there. I only got up to drag myself to appointments (thankfully sparse), let the chickens and dogs out (and in), and cobble together some easy meals. I didn't even read that much.
*Lots of fluids. Tea in all its forms, fruit juice, coffee...whatever.
*Keeping the house as even a temperature as possible...especially compared to the outside.
*Warm baths. Some of our bath salts have eucalyptus -- a boon when you can't draw a deep breath from chest congestion.
*Hot toddies. You need something to help you sleep. Most people would use Nyquil. Not only do I hate the taste (yuck!), it tends to leave me dull, headachy and groggy in the morning.
Try a hot toddy, instead. There's even a Brick hot toddy, which sounds like hot buttered whisky. (I keep thinking of Clarence the angel in It's A Wonderful Life, listing the warmups that would make him happy, including "hot buttered rum, heavy on the butter...")
A hot toddy, sipped slowly, can do wonders for a good night's sleep.
*Easy food. This is where your emergency pantry and freezer meals come in handy. (Hey, you needed to use them up, anyways. Using up your available food helps when you're trying to save money, too. Not that this ever happens...) Canned soups and stews, mac and cheese boxes (with a little chopped protein or some broccoli thrown in, for vitamin purposes), potpies...if you can stir it up or bung it in the oven in five minutes or less, it works.
And of course, chicken soup. If you're not a chicken-and-noodle fan, try Zuppa Toscana-- it's wonderful.
*Admitting you're not Superwoman. Or Man. Or whatever. Unless you're currently in talks about the Greek financial crisis, you probably could take a few days off without the world coming to an end. Stop trying to be heroic...so you can get better.
Now that I'm feeling better, guess who's got it?
The Brick, of course.
Guys and the flu -- now, that's a whole different story.