I avoid pain medication. I only take antibiotics in the rare cases where it’s absolutely necessary. When it comes to things like stomachaches and other small discomforts, I believe what I was taught as a child: clean living is the solution.

If I have a cold or flu, though, I want drugs. I have faith in Nyquil. I even take Dayquil, ineffective though I know it is.

My eyes hurt, my head hurts, my throat feels as though someone has been scraping it with a fork.

What’s worse, I feel stupid. I went to class and heard myself explaining things badly in a croaky voice. I wrote stuff that had no spark of cleverness. My eyes moved really slowly, maybe with wobbling.

Of course, I also sneezed and coughed. And whined.

In a perfect world, a day like this would be spent on the sofa with unlimited cups of tea, grapes, and British murder mysteries. I could take those drugs and slide gently in and out of sleep. I did that yesterday, actually, and didn’t feel too bad.

Today I was working. Dayquil, not proper drugs. Grapes, okay, but only with meals at set times, and tea at long intervals because I had to accomplish things. I have a meeting still to go to tonight.

As soon as I’ve done that, though, I plan to take Nyquil and go to bed. That’s it.