I’ve said this before (but it’s early in the morning so I’m expecting you not to notice that I’m repeating myself) but there is almost no better feeling than waking up feeling better, after you’ve been ill. A week ago, the day I was due to see Carter The Unstoppable Sex Machine at Brixton Academy, I did the Brockwell Park 5K Parkrun and I should have guessed from the pain in my lungs right afterwards that all was not one hundred per cent tickety-boo. That evening, after the show (about which more soon, of course) I had a sore throat but I put it down to singing along and whooping and didn’t worry too much, except that it woke me up a few times in the night so that the next day, the day I had to travel up to Manchester for the Radio Festival, I woke up feeling pretty rotten.
And it didn’t get better! I pick up the occasional cold, but it usually lasts a day or two. This got steadily worse over the course of the week, so that I couldn’t go into a meeting or a talk without ensuring I was fully stocked up with water and Lockets and painkillers, otherwise I was liable to begin a coughing fit that wouldn’t end, or else find my head and face aching so badly that I wouldn’t listen to anything anybody was saying.
My body usually waits for me to stop being busy before it gets ill, for which I am grateful, but this time around it must have decided that since there was no sign of any imminent letup in my busy-ness, it was just going to go ahead. I did two days of the Radio Festival, two days in the office, drinks with an ex-boss, work drinks and dinner with two lovely friends, all in a state that would usually render me bedbound and miserable. I was a bit miserable, but I was also busy and interested in what I was doing, so I could ignore it, sometimes.
But yesterday it reached my sinuses and left me with an excruciating headache as well as no voice, so I decided I would work from home, which was a terrible mistake because it allowed me time to actually be ill. Yesterday was the worst day of all. I thought I might never be well again, and that I would have to cancel Christmas. And then this morning I woke up at 7.30 (instead of 2am and 4am and 6am) with a sore throat and a blocked nose, but only the last vestiges of a cough and no sinus pain, and honestly, it feels like the best gift anyone has ever given me. It’s grey outside and I have chores to do, but this is already an excellent Saturday.