I've been alone at home for the past 2 weeks. And I usually love having the house all to myself to work on messy projects, have my girlfriends over and, most probably, redecorate the whole house.
But this time, a couple days after Octave left, I got sick.
What started out as the usual symptoms of a migraine turned into a full-blown cold. I'll spare you the details but you know the drill: congested nose, sore throat, cough, headache.
I got sick last winter too, for a little more than 2 weeks, so this time I did my best to take action as soon as possible and prevent that.
And failed miserably.
I had assumed that I got contaminated last winter because I had been hired to work on a project at an agency. Public transportation, a non-dedicated computer at work (I hate typing on a keyboard that's not mine) and snow days were probably a lot to process for the immune system of a person who had recently moved from Southern California, usually works from home and drives her own car.
Since then, I've become a little germaphobic. I have this thing with pets. Whenever someone who shows any sign of an illness leaves my house I open all the windows, and wipe all surfaces they've been in contact with. And I wash my hands 100 times a day.
But this hasn't prevented me from catching a cold again this year.
What to do when you get a cold
From my research, I learned that there is not much to do to cure a cold besides treating the symptoms and waiting for it to pass.
I felt an urge to stock up on vitamins but the first article I read on the subject debunked that myth, and many others.
Instead, here what I should have done:
Stay at home
Other things that couldn't hurt:
Take long Epsom salt baths or hot showers
Drink warm liquids all day (herbal teas, soups, broths)
I did some of that, but not consistently. I binge-watched TV shows until late at night and I worked, because, you know, freelance life.
I felt like staying at home all day was enough and I could reward myself with an outing in the evening.
As I'm writing this I'm feeling much better, although I still wake up in the morning feeling groggy.
Hopefully, by the end of the week, I'll be feeling much better as I'm flying to LA to meet Octave. We're gonna visit friends, say hi to our former neighbors and drive up North back to Portland.
This misadventure is a good reminder to take care of myself. It made me realize that I sometimes take my health for granted. So here's what I'm gonna do and/or continue doing when I'm back from that next trip.
Nourish my body with healthy food (I must have taken that resolution 1000 times)
Balance a little better between yoga and cardio sessions at the gym
Schedule regular visits to the sauna
Listen to my body and know when to say no
Check out my winter survival kit!
Or maybe I should get a dog? I was recently told that they're good to build up your immune system. Haha!
On a more serious note, I hope the colder weather hasn't taken its toll on you yet. And I'd love to know how you deal with a cold. Is there a magic recipe I should know about?
Picture by Luis Felipe
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