Historically, I’ve been a fairly “hearty” type. I’ve gone years without taking a sick day. But, a few years ago, I got sick twice and it was hell. Once with the H1N1 virus and once, much, much worse, with the seasonal flu. I’ve never been that sick, honestly. I had mistakenly thought I didn’t need a flu shot, but now I’ve learned my lesson.
This year, I was first in line to get that injection. And you can bet my husband and kids were with me. I even hounded my daughter, who’s away at college at the University of Tennessee (Go Vols!) to get her shot at school. She did. Good girl.
So, because I love all of you, and because the CDC is recommending that EVERY person over 6 months old get a flu shot this year, here’s your assignment: get your flu shot if you haven’t already. Make plans for you and your family now, either by finding out if your medical provider gives them for free as part of your plan and when they do that, or finding the nearest pharmacy offering the shots for a small fee. Get this on your calendar or go do it now.
Let’s hope this will mean that you don’t have to deal with the flu, but, just in case, let’s prepare anyway.
- First, go through your current stock of medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, and toss out anything that’s expired. Note that you shouldn’t just flush or throw away any prescription medication, as it can enter the water supply or end up in the wrong hands. You should turn in expired medications to your pharmacy and let them dispose of it safely.
- Make sure you can find your thermometer and that it’s working properly. Buy a digital one if you don’t have one. I wouldn’t have known that my flu had turned into a bacterial sinus infection if I couldn’t accurately monitor my fever. (I mean, I knew I was sick, but in my haze, I just didn’t know my fever had gotten that high.)
- Stock up on ibuprofen, nasal decongestants and cough suppressants.
- Make sure you’ve got plenty of Kleenex. Don’t rely on toilet paper for blowing your nose. You need a nice, soft Kleenex or you’ll rip up your poor nose right quick. Not pretty.
- Check your supply of tea bags and make sure you’ve got some good old chicken noodle soup. Cliched, yes. Surprisingly effective, though.
I hope you’ll never need this stockpile. But, if you or your family does need it, you’ll be so glad you’re prepared and don’t have to run out in the middle of the night when you’re feeling miserable.
Here’s to a healthy rest of the fall and winter, Penelopes!