Winter is here, and this year I am prepared. I had my first ever flu shot and (touch wood) so far so good. I am usually pretty good when it comes to dealing with winter ailments. The Farmer (who is as strong as an ox and rarely gets ill at all)… not so much.
I am a woman who has survived over 60 weeks of morning sickness (for which I was hospitalised twice), and I had three natural, drug free births. So I know all about real pain. And if I say I am sick, then let it be known that I am truly very sick.
I don't like to complain about being sick either. You just have to keep putting one foot in front of another. My kids get fed, my house gets cleaned, the washing gets done... etc. So it's possible that sometimes I could be sick for over a week and no one might ever know about it.
Which brings me to the dreaded Man-Flu.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Man-Flu, it works like this...
1. When ladies get a mild cold, and a man contracts the same thing, he gets something more akin to a real flu.
2. When you get a real flu (aches and pains, chills etc.) your partner is bound to be nearly on his death bed when he contracts the same strain.
3. Even male children/infants/babies are susceptible to Man-Flu.
It was only very recently that I read about a survey that had been conducted in Europe that was suggesting that men actually have a lower pain threshold than women. Which brings some substance into the old "why do I always seem to contract a more dangerous strain of the flu than you Jessie?" argument. The Farmer can't help it! He is biologically destined to always suffer more than me when it comes to the common cold. Mostly Man-Flu in our house is greeted with eye rolls, groans of self-pity and avoidance. Mostly. I’m not a complete monster.
Some years ago now, The Farmer fell ill with a suspected case of Man-Flu. Five days into it all, I was becoming frustrated and edgy. I was actually a little over it all. I finally dragged hubby into the local hospital, carefully detailing the 'Man-Flu' symptoms and engaging in a little friendly banter about how 'surely this attack of Man-Flu has nothing on my 60 weeks of morning sickness!' Two days later, the results were in. Food poisoning. As it turned out, The Farmer was lucky to have presented at the hospital at that time, as failure to have done so would have only caused more damage to his body. His otherwise good health had been his saving grace it seemed.
So now when hubby is 'sick' I am reminded of 'that time that he nearly died', and how I need to be a little more sympathetic. Until then, my flu shot, a hot lemon and honey tea, and a turn in front of the wood heater should be enough to stave off any winter chills.