The Wannabe Writer versus The Massive Head Cold of Dooooooooom


By Donna A. Leahey

The Massive Head Cold of Doooooooom (hereafter known as MHCoD) is goin around. And last week, it struck me down.

MHCoD snuck up on me on a Saturday. I sneezed several times.

My mother asked if I was coming down with a cold. I laughed. “Ha ha ha! I never get sick!” I said.

My father asked if it was allergies. I scoffed. “Hmph. I don’t have allergies!”

On Sunday, I sneezed more. My nose ran. My throat itched. I didn’t realize the MHCoD already held me in its mucusy grip.

Monday morning, I could no longer deny it. I was sick. I coughed and sneezed. I generated copious amounts of snot. But it wasn’t so bad.

Then came Tuesday. I moaned. I groaned. I wanted to lay about in bed, but it wasn’t to be.

Wednesday I realized that Tuesday was not the worst. Wednesday was the worst. I had lost the battle. I crumpled into a helpless heap of self-pity and martyr-complex, clutching my bottles of Dayquil and Nyquil to my aching chest.

I had hoped that Thursday would be better. MHCoD was falling back, I thought I’d won the war. Instead, I missed its flanking maneuver. It gave me all of Thursday to believe that I was recovering then it struck at three am with a coughing fit that woke the rest of the house. I retaliated with polypharmacy – I threw every medication I could find in its face and slept propped up on a prodigious pile of pillows. I was hurt, but drove the MHCoD back for another night.

Friday it seemed I’d won. I suffered some lingering effects, a sniffle here, a hoarse voice there, but it appeared I’d driven the MHCoD into hiding. Until that night. As the sun sank, as the temperature dropped, MHCoD feinted at me, skirmished. And I learned I carried with me the fear of a repeat ambush. I preemptively dosed myself with Nyquil and cough syrup, propped myself on my pillows and fell into a fitful sleep.

The next several days passed the same way. In the light of day, MHCoD went into hiding only to return in the shadows of night.

For over a week, MHCoD sapped me not just of my will to live, not just my energy, but also my ability to think and be creative. Finally, well over a week since since the first attacks, I feel confident that I will win this fight. I can breath, I can safely walk away from a box of tissues for minutes at a time. Tonight, I might even take away one pillow from the stack.

I will finally defeat MHCoD! I will be free of the cough and the sniffle! I will sleep well without need for Nyquil!

What’s that I see on the horizon? The forces of Secondary Bronchitis?



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