You got what’s going around

Published 4:47 pm Tuesday, January 14, 2020

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may have written about this before, but I like it when doctors are so specific. “I think you have what’s going around.” I’ve heard about “what’s going around,” but I’ve never seen it.

I woke up Sunday morning, my only work day as a pastor, and I felt like the proverbial person who had been run over by a truck. Donna Sue, when she says that also adds, “And I think the truck is still on top of me.”

Think, with me, about the image we used to conjure when we had an angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other. Most of the time, one says “Do it,” while the other says, “Don’t do it.”

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In the midst of having “What goes around,” the warmth and comfort of the bed was what I wanted to feel. I looked at the clock and one voice said, “Stay.” The other voice tried to convince me that, “It’s time to get up. You have work to do.”

I began to do mathematics. “If I stay just 15 minutes longer, no big deal.” My achy, breaky body was saying that 15 minutes would not do it. I needed at least 30 minutes. My mathematical mind was taking those extra minutes and dividing them into increments of seconds and I figured that I could stay in bed another 32 minutes and 49 seconds.

I finally got up and drank a cup of coffee and, from one shoulder, the voice said, “Call in.” The other shoulder said, “You can do it.” I did it and made it to church. I felt okay, but not great. I tried to gain a little sympathy, but all I heard was “You must have what’s going around.”

I never knew there were so many doctors without degrees. My mother had prescribed Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold and Flu. I had gotten a box of that and taken a few doses.

Donna Sue had told me about the DM Tussin we had in the medicine cabinet. “Check the date.” I used the Tussin for cough suppressant and even the little coughs made my abdomen feel like a washing machine gone bad. A hiccup would have hurt, much less a full cough.

After the service, a well-meaning lady said, “You probably have pneumonia. Better get a chest x-ray.”

Another lady asked me if I was taking anything and I couldn’t remember the name of the medicine I was taking. My mind was playing tricks or not working at all and I said “I’m taking Aqua Velva Plus.” She laughed and said, “At least your breath will smell good.”

I begged off the evening service and spent Sunday afternoon in bed. My achy, breaky body fell into the warmth and comfort of the bed and I slept like a baby except when I would cough. Then I would get up and take a little Tussin to settle the washing machine. I don’t know what I’m saying.

I figured I needed to go to the doctor to make certain I didn’t have pneumonia. Plus, who knows, I may need some medicine other than Aqua Velva Plus.

Thankfully, the doc worked me in. I told him all that had been going on and, then he said it. “I don’t believe you have the flu, but there is something going around. You may have it.”

“Breathe deeply,” he said as he listened to my back. I guess that’s where the lungs are. “Lungs are clear and there doesn’t seem to be any infection. Drink plenty of fluids, rest, and, here’s an aspirin. Call me if need me and stay away from what’s going around.”