An Open Letter to Being Sick

Dear Common Cold,

A couple of days ago, I awoke to an odd scratching in my throat. Often times when this happens, I start flicking my tongue as a way of ‘scratching’ the itch. It doesn’t usually work but on the plus side, it disrupts whoever is standing near me.


As the day progressed, it became painfully clear that the scratching in my throat was indeed the first sign of being sick, and that you were about to overtake my body. Now I know people get sick everyday and colds are simply a part of life. Unfortunately, you seem to affect me in ways that are less than graceful. For one, I am extremely weakened by any sort of medicine. I mean ANY sort of medicine. Tylenol renders me as high as a kite and Benedryl causes me to sleep the sleep of a thousand moons.


I also lose all sense of dignity when you visit. You’re like that friend that forces me to drink too much and then call my ex. Instead of walking through a store and looking for the things I might need to feel better, I prance around, yelling at the top of my lungs, “WHERE ARE THE THROAT DRUGS?!” Upon finding the throat drugs, and taking them, I proceed to get worse as I am then high from said throat drugs.

I become easily irritated and my patience seems to evaporate into thin air.

This can be difficult for those around me as usually I display a rather high level of patience and understanding. Yet when my body betrays me, I snap at others over the slightest thing and yell at every inanimate object in my house. This includes, but is not limited to:











Izzy’s stupid face

Izzy’s judgy eyes


Car outside

My own hand: Note, this happens usually at the high point of the tylenol induced daze.

angry at hand

I know that the best thing for me is to get rest but like so many others, when I you visit, I find it nearly impossible to sleep as I am too busy coughing, sneezing or sniffling. This lack of sleep causes me to be even more intolerant of others and the noises they make when their walking or breathing or moving.

“Stop breathing! We can all hear you! No one needs that much air! NO! ONE!

At the end of the day, I know that the only way to get better is rest and take it easy, but all I really want is a face vacuum to suck the mucous out of my face.

Please Common Cold, I’m begging you. Go somewhere else. My body is not a good Bed and Breakfast. You don’t simply make the bed dusty, you destroy the whole house. You’re like a college party in my throat before any of the Freshman learn how to hold their liquor. I have things to do and places to be and you simply cannot stay here.

I guess I’ll go take another nap, in hopes that you get the hint, but please think about what I’ve said and consider leaving before I wake up again.

Yours Truly,

Jaysen sniff sniff Headley


This post comes out of a weekly writing prompt I do with my partner, Carl Li.  Read his blog HERE.

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