Is there any greater test of a woman’s capacity to love, than when her partner suffers from a bad case of Man Flu?
Given the choice, I’d prefer to go on a three-week Paleo diet and put naked ‘before and after’ shots of my muffin top on my school’s Facebook page than look after the old man when he has a cold the flu.
This is just one of the areas that men are the weaker sex.
A woman gets a cold and life continues as normal. A man gets a cold and they expect the world to stop revolving while they plan their funeral.
Perhaps our maker invented man flu to try and instill some empathy in women? Or more likely – to test our superior strength, like he did with menstruation, childbirth and menopause.
I had to lie in bed last night and listen to the old man as he hacked and spluttered and spread his vile germs thoughtlessly all over our clean sheets. Frankly, a cockroach would have make a much more appealing bed partner.
Just saying, but he could have gone to the spare room so that one of us could have got some sleep.
But the worst thing about the old man when he thinks he’s sick is that he dons my dressing gown, which I find strangely revolting.
He truly believes that he attracts a far more virulent case of whatever sickness the rest of the family is exposed to. He packed me off to the pharmacy this morning to buy flu medication and a thermometer. When the pharmacist assured me that all he really needed for the flu was Panadol, I had to insist on a product with the word ‘flu’ on the packaging, just to appease him.
But there is one true test of the flu – you don’t eat when you have the flu. So if you can still ram a large bowl of cereal down your neck and demand comfort food in bed, it’s definitely a cold, I begin to get a little skeptical.
The old man disagrees. As he dragged his aching body out of bed to fix himself some breakfast, he quoted in that affected, sick way, ‘ feed a cold and feed a fever, Lou. I need to get my strength back up.’
I know you’re all sick to death of hearing about my flu. But it is now day 12.
So I’m wondering if it’s time for THE blood test?
You see my body still feels like it has done the Tour de France, drug-free and with no training.
Twice, at least.
And I know that’s not normal.
And I’m feeling a tad guilty because I do believe that I successfully spread my little virus fairly successfully around the whole of the south-west of England during our Mince Pie Tour of Europe over Christmas. With the commitments we had, feeling sorry for myself in bed and watching back to back repeats of British ‘XFactor’ on such a socially heavily scheduled trip was never really an option, no matter how appealing it sounded.
You can’t let people down when you see them every three years, so you share your germs as well as your stories.
The Tour took us on an emotional roller coaster via Brittany in France and around the south west of England. The winds were obviously blowing in the right direction and when the flu virus spotted the easy target of my pathetically inadequate, newly-acquired Aussie defense system, it jumped at the chance to create some real physical havoc.
Seriously, who gets the flu and THEN a grade 9 cold all in the same seven days?
The most frustrating aspect of my illness was that due to the extremely painful symptom of what felt like a lacerated throat, I couldn’t even moan audibly about how terrible I felt. I certainly couldn’t protect myself from the unsympathetic verbal assaults shot in my direction by CLOSE family, every time I dared to mention how f*cking awful I was feeling.
Which was ALL the time.
You see, when you’re ill on holiday, no-one wants to know or really cares about how miserable you are feeling for fear of spoiling their own holiday expectations. Sympathy certainly wasn’t on offer and with our packed schedule of meetings with family and old friends to rival a Royal tour, there was no opt-out clause. Which mean’t I had no choice but to spread my germs, really.
Of course I felt bad about spreading my disease so blatantly to friends who had come to see us with the best intentions; particularly when my dastardliness involved children. At one point I did consider wearing one of those medical masks favoured by Asians to avoid contamination but the old man outrightly refused to let me, fearing that the onus would then be on him to take responsibility for all communication. So instead, I sewed my germs, croaking and snuffling my way around Europe, with only REALLY old people and babies let off the hook.
Fortunately, I did have some obvious symptoms to prove my malaise (like my pathetically croaky voice and fugly pallid skin), beyond the ‘faking it’ shaky limbs and headaches ordinarily associated with a serious bout of the flu, otherwise everyone might have come to the conclusion that I’d just aged horribly over the past few years and simply looked sh*t.
‘Attractive’ is not exactly how I’d describe my look over the past ten days, which was unfortunate when I obviously wanted to look younger or at least thinner than the last time we visited the homeland.
As I mentioned in my previous post, in fairness the extra kilos were due in part to MY rare strain of flu which uncharacteristically induced hunger rather than starvation, and with decent Chinese, Indian and Doner kebabs to catch up on, I made the most of my need to feed my illness.
After twelve days of sickness, I had unfortunately gained four kilos and was forced to request special help from the Virgin air hostess to help lever my new Kardashionesque ass into my economy seat home; although luckily (and FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER) we were upgraded to ‘extra leg-room’ seats, (which gave us a whole extra 4” at least), meaning we could cross AND un-cross our legs, although we did then require glasses to watch the miniscule tv monitors.
Anyway, according to the old man, I’m finally beginning to look better; the implication being that I’m well enough to cook, resume my domestic responsibilities and stop boring the pants off my readers about my woman flu.