March 25th, 2021

Venus

Idol Survivor: "Little Green Pills"

Little Green Pills
idol survivor | daily-fic challenge, day six | 688 words


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There is tickling and prickling at the back of my nose and eyes, and there's no way this should be happening right now.

Writing these daily Survivor Idol entries is a bit of a strain, and I'm staying up too late and sometimes losing sleep because of it—or for other random reasons, like, "I'm here in bed, and I've been awake for hours. Who knows why?"

In normal times (remember those?), when I started feeling run-down like this, a cold might try to wriggle through my defenses and settle in. But now… What cold? And, HOW? I never go anywhere! I never see anybody, and the two people in the household who do are always wearing masks unless they're visiting with my brother-in-law.

All of our anti-COVID practices have removed most of the opportunity to spread viruses in general, so where did this would-be-attacker come from? I mean, unless the "caller" is already "inside the house," which had better not be the case. My dad's side of the family already has enough auto-immune peskiness, and I've been spared thus far, so let's not go there.

Whenever I feel a cold trying to sneak in, I turn to my "magic" green pills. These are capsules that contain a combination of echinacea and goldenseal, which help ward off illnesses when taken together. On its own, echinacea is supposed to help you get better faster, but it's not preventative. Back when our youngest was first in daycare, I would get a new virus every 1 to 1 ½ weeks, despite the echinacea. Then one day, the coworker across the aisle from me mentioned that I needed the combination of both herbs. Echinacea alone might help me recover from an individual virus sooner. But that wasn't necessarily good, if the recovery also helped open the "receptor" doors again for the next one.

Once I switched to the combo pill, the number of colds I got dropped down to about one a month. Far more often than my usual once per year before kids and again now, but a huge improvement over 3-4 times a month. I've kept those pills on hand ever since. They have the taste and smell of evil green tea, but it's worth it.

They help our daughter too, or at least they did during her first two years of college. After that, she stopped using them, and I recently found out that she might have been taking them every single day instead of whenever she felt like she was about to come down with something. Big mistake! With prolonged use, they can interfere with some prescription drugs, which was exactly what she didn't like.

They don't seem to work for our son at all…

It's been almost a week of burning the candle at both ends for me now. It started with staying up until 4:00am last Thursday night, writing notes to each of the earlier Survivor Idol participants. The next day kicked off with an Idol post announcing the "entry per day" challenge, to the effect of "Hi! You are already woefully far behind!" Then there were late nights spent on writing, mornings where I had to get up for work meetings, and the hours in between where being 'in bed' didn't always mean successfully managing to get to sleep (and what is that about?)

Tuesday night, my nose started feeling prickly and slightly-congested. My throat was scratchy, and I suddenly felt incredibly tired—and I knew what all that meant. Even if I had no idea how the germs managed to get to me.

I took one of the "magic green pills" before bed, and another in the morning and again late this afternoon. But the tide has not yet turned.

Back, I say. Back! I do not need a head-cold right now, not with a work deadline at the end of this month and so much daily Idol-related writing still to do.

Argh! *rubs nose to silence the itchy sneeze-triggering spot that keeps waking up and trying to launch a sneeze loop*

That's it—I'm taking another green pill and heading off to bed.


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