This week I got a common cold. Nearly everyone I saw in the
past few weeks was in various stages of a cold, so I wasn’t surprised when I got one.
What did surprise me was the conversations I heard about each person’s cold. Although most of us have had many colds, it’s almost as if this one is going to be different. One family member who had a lot of mosquito bites wondered if she might have West Nile. Another was pretty certain he had pneumonia. Another was wondering if she had a sinus infection. She was under the impression that the color of one’s mucous determined whether a runny is caused by a virus, bacteria or allergies. This is a myth, one which even some medical professionals believe.
So when I felt the first symptoms coming on, I vowed to accept that I just had a common cold, from whatever virus everyone else was sharing. Day 4, with a sore throat, swollen glands and no nasal congestion, my imagination kicked in. I caved and called the advice nurse. She said I needed to be seen.
The thing about imagination, is I can use it to make me feel better or to feel worse. Urgent care didn’t open for 4 more hours, so I decided to rest. And not feed my imagination.
A few hours later the nasal congestion and cough kicked in and my cold seemed like everyone else’s. I wondered if the best thing would just to keep my cold germs to myself and let rest, liquids, and the tincture time do their thing. It was just what the doctor ordered. My cold was indeed common.
If you have a fever, breathing problem, or just feel like something is wrong, call or go to your doctor. Not all colds are common. However, don’t let your imagination run wild. Let a health professional tell you what you may or may not have. And although a common cold sounds so ordinary, don’t let that fool you. A common cold doesn’t feel good.