Sunday, 6 March 2011

Man-flu is no fun when it's passed on.

A couple of weeks ago, Neil came home from golf feeling very unwell, shivery and listless. Man-flu had arrived.

Since then I have tried to avoid catching it but living in the same environment, it was high improbable that the bug would pass me by.

And it's my own fault. I'm supposed to have a flu-jab each winter because I am asthmatic. Normally, my asthma is triggered by flowers, or highly perfumed cleaning products, or perfumed candles but, if I get a bad cold that develops into a cough it can be enough to cause serious breathing problems.

Last weekend I started with the dreaded cold. I have boosted the profits of our local chemist with the amount of tablets, medicines and losenges I've gone through this week trying to keep the cough from getting hold. But all to no avail.

The offices where I have started work are very warm, which makes a lovely change from my last 2 jobs where the offices could be incredibly cold on occasions, but warm, dry air irritates my cough and makes it worse. Talking makes it worse and part of my job is to be on the phone quite often - so I struggled to get through to the weekend. Fortunately, my day off is Monday so I have a few days to get over the worst of it.

I find the worst time for my asthma is always during the night, my worst attacks have been during the early hours of the morning and it can be very scary when I wake up choking & unable to catch my breath.

I've slept downstairs for 2 nights so that I could be in a more upright position as, everytime I laid down, the coughing started. I found I could sleep quite well on the reclined sofa but, yesterday was a much better day and so last night I decided I would try sleeping in bed again. I stacked the pillows up to see if that would help and fell asleep while Neil was watching the football review.

The night's peace was shattered at 4am when I woke suddenly with an overwhelming sense of choking. I was completely unable to get my breath and couldn't control my coughing enough to use my inhaler. I sat for several minutes trying to contain the panic that was building in my head, knowing that there was only me that could get this under control, as much as Neil tries to help - there is nothing he can do.

Eventually, I managed to get a couple of puffs from my inhaler and I could feel my breathing calming down. It's several years since I had an attack this bad, so hopefully it will be several more before the next but just incase, I shall be sleeping sitting up again tonight. One night of panic is quite enough.
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