Autism: Lost Week

17 Mar

I think the week was good. I mean, I remember that I had gone out to the show a couple of times with my husband, and that we really enjoyed what we had watched. From that moment until now, however, everything has become fuzzy.

It came on all of a sudden and unexpected. I was cleaning my dishwasher – on a Thursday even though it is not my cleaning day – when I started to cough. It came from my lungs, and from the beginning I struggled to get through more than a few seconds without coughing. Due to the sudden onset, and how it just wouldn’t let up, I assumed that it was caused by the disinfectant I had used in the dishwasher. It made sense. It was pretty powerful, and those things often leave me coughing – only not so long.

When my husband came home, he was coughing, too. He said he first noticed it around 3pm (mine was sometime between 2-2:30pm.) It came from his lungs, and wouldn’t let up for more than a few seconds at a time right from the beginning.


Even so we went out that night as planned. We went to see the dress rehearsal of “Stereotype High” at our local theatre. All evening long we were coughing every few minutes – but we couldn’t be sick. I mean, colds don’t start full on like that. They just don’t. So despite the coincidence that my husband and I began coughing at nearly the same time, and even though we were at separate parts of town when it began, we thought it was environmental rather than a virus. After all, aside from the cough, we didn’t feel sick.

I must say, I really enjoyed the play! Even though it was a comedy, and typically I don’t at all like comedies (the jokes, rather than making me laugh, often leave me feeling nauseous) I really liked this one. It was funny – like “Corner Gas” funny! I laughed a lot (and coughed a lot) and didn’t feel sick about it.

The next morning I felt sick, though. Very sick. So I emailed my friend who was supposed to come for a visit to warn her against coming, and then I fell asleep. Normally I don’t nap, but on that day I was so tired I couldn’t keep my eyes open.

My husband came home from work early, and went straight to bed. From Friday afternoon until early Monday morning, we barely woke up to acknowledge another day passing. I fed my girls, and took them outside, and went to bed. Over and over.

All over achy, feverish, chilled, burning eyes, bad cough, no appetite… sick! So very sick.

And then only thought I remember having that entire weekend – despite the fact that my dog was scheduled to be spayed out of town that Monday – was a reminder of Stephen King’s “The Stand.” In the beginning, a few people went into public places with a cough, and pretty soon the whole world was dying. That weekend I was pretty sure I was dying (and if that were true, we likely spread it to a theatre full of people, which would quickly spread to the entire world) and I was pretty sure I didn’t care.

Well, here I am 8 days later, and it is the first time in 8 days that I can form enough of a thought to write my blog post. It is the first time in over a week that I have been able to keep my eyes open. And as my dog sits healing from her surgery on my lap, I wonder how we even got through that day.

I guess I really was sick after all. Sorry theatre people!



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