To recap: It was a week ago this hour that my writing students watched in horror as I came down with the flu in a matter of minutes. They fled, and Tuesday morning I went to the Dr for an inconclusive flu test. On Wednesday, when my fever exploded from normal to 101.5 in an hour or two, I paid my fuckin $95 co-pay for Tamiflu – the anti-viral that mitigates the disastrous influenza symptoms I wasn’t supposed to have after getting the flu shot months ago. So much for inconclusive. So much for immunization. So much for Medicare. Life is so drenched in lies.
“By the time you finish these 10 pills in five days,” the pharmacist told me, you will be over the flu.” I cancelled all my work and settled down in front of the Olympics. Within a day the Tamiflu started to work. Each day I improved – there was a shitload of improving that needed doing – and last night I took my last pill.
This morning I woke up without the sense that a rodent was rotting in my mouth or that my gut was roiling with gangrene. I could taste my Yorkshire Gold tea. I could eat a yogurt without feeling repulsed.
I woke up wanting to write and I wrote. I worked on the back cover for my book Lillian’s Last Affair. I was able to talk on the phone. I grew bold and decided that, after being sick to my stomach for 5 days, I would go out and get myself any comfort food I wanted. Or, to put it more succinctly, I’d go buy a pound of bacon. I put on underpants and jeans for the first time in a week, a big sweatshirt over my pajama top, and actually drove to the supermarket. I picked up fresh vegetables, milk, and Ritz crackers (the only food that went down well over the week). I grew tired. I pulled everything out of my cart onto the conveyor belt, only to remember that I hadn’t bought bacon. I put everything back in my cart and, with difficulty, found the bacon. I headed back towards the register before I remembered I needed tomatoes and white bread for BLTs.
Now I’m home, too tired to contemplate my return to work on Wednesday, sitting with my BLT, watching the Olympics.
Someone who knows everything told me that the company that makes Tamiflu offered to just sell it to the government to give it to people cheap (like the flu vaccine), but the government didn’t take it. So did I mention that my co-pay on Medicare was $95?