If there is one thing that binds all college kids together, it is illness. No matter where you go to school or what you do with your time, you are going to get sick; there is nothing you can do about it.
As I write this, I have been awake for two days two days of uninterrupted hell. The only reason I am able to sit down at my computer and pen this fine piece of literature is a heavy dose of Excedrin Migraine mixed with DayQuil, Sudafed Nasal Decongestant and Tylenol Cold and Sinus. To hell with the warning labels! The past three days have been a blur of mucus, headaches, sweating and some very interesting attempts at walking. It would seem that the wall is my best friend since I am constantly leaning on it for support.
I have been accused of being a hypochondriac before because I tend to freak out when I get sick, but this time it is different. I'm not imagining the gallons of phlegm coming up my throat every time I cough. I'm not dreaming up the pounding headache that I get whenever I move. I'm not pretending to be shivering my ass off whenever a square inch of my body is exposed. And I'm certainly not faking the amount of liquid evil flowing from my nose. It's really amazing how fast my body is making this stuff it's like Henry Ford got hold of my sinus operations ("This mucus is flying out of here every time he blows his nose. We've got to make more and make it faster if we're ever going to stay ahead of him, Damnit!").
The only bright side to this horrible, disgusting illness is that I know I'm not alone. I know there are millions of you out there suffering with me. I know that your bodies said just what mine did, "Well, well, well. You think you can stay up and drink all night with no consequences? You do, do you? We'll see about that! Enjoy the diarrhea!" I know that, like me, many of you thought you could find some help in your school's health center. And, I know that, just like me, all of you have realized another great truth about college life your school's health center doesn't know what the hell they are talking about.
I've been to the health center an estimated 25 times in my four years at this school and they have never helped me in any way whatsoever. Don't get me wrong, all the people that work there are very nice; they just don't have the power to help you since they aren't doctors. All they can really do is say, "you should take some Tylenol." That is their solution for everything. Broken foot? "Take some Tylenol." Ruptured appendix? "Take some Tylenol." Bullet in the stomach? "Take some Tylenol" no, try Tylenol PM, you should get some sleep." Maybe I'm exaggerating, but" actually, no, I'm not.
Also, it seems that the only illness that university health workers were taught to diagnose is a sinus infection. No matter what the nature of the visit, chances are you have a sinus infection. It doesn't matter if you're coming in for a pap smear, you'll probably walk out of there convinced that you have a sinus infection along with the clap. And what will the treatment be? Why, Tylenol of course!
Maybe I should be a little nicer to the healthcare staff at my school. They try hard and do everything they can, but since when are sick people rational people? When you're sick, you blame everyone but yourself for your illness. "I don't care if I was sharing drinks, standing in the cold with no jacket and licking public phones, dude. If you hadn't coughed on my keyboard last week I never would have gotten sick."
I estimate that I'll feel like this for the next week or so and slowly get better. And, here is the third thing that we all have in common when it comes to being sick as soon as you're well, you completely forget all the promises you made to yourself when you were sweating and shivering in bed all night. "I'll never kiss strangers, I'll wash my hands 10 times a day, I'll always wear my jacket when I go outside." Once you're back on your feet, it's, "Hey dude, can I have a sip of your drink? Oh, I don't care if you just coughed in it, I'm so thirsty." Oh well, I just hope I get better soon so I can get back to smoking two packs a day and licking public toilets.