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Flu obs from Christmas vacation


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Ugh, I don't want to write this haha. But I'm just gonna go for it. During Christmas break, my best friend and I flew to visit my family for 2 weeks. When we were there, my sister's boyfriend (who works at a hospital) got the flu (confirmed by doc, got prescription, etc). Like the next week, my sister and best friend both got sick. Ya know, presumably the flu, but neither of them went to a doc. So I'll try to do my best with the obs...but it kinda grossed me out (especially sister), and also just stressed me out. I kind of like being sick, but not flu sick, and I was super stressed about if I would end up flying home on the plane with the flu (that would be an embarrassing nightmare), and it was nonnegotiable for me to attend my first week of classes (which started the day after our flight home) or else I wouldn't get any financial aid hahah. I absolutely did not want to be "that person" on the plane or in school spreading the flu to people (aka, my friend). 

Sooooo anyway... My friend and sister are both in their mid twenties. My friend will be called Mushu, and my sister can be.... Ruby. Idk. They both have kind of dirty blond hair. Mushu's is much longer, while Ruby's is like shoulder length, straighter, thinner. Ruby has glasses (but sometimes wears contacts). I won't go into too much detail about the sis because... ugh. And, warning to those who are germaphobic, friend doesn't exactly keep things to herself when it comes to germs.

They both started getting sick on like the same day. Ruby's seemed more like a cold... She was like sniffly, sneezy, kind of congested. Mushu just had like a dry, persistent cough. Ruby was first to just admit that she was sick. I was skeptical about it being the flu, cus I thought that didn't have many nasal symptoms. But I guess I was just incorrect, and her bf who was the one with the definite flu in the first place did have the whole stuffy / runny nose business in addition to the body aches and cough. He had come over a lot to play card games and stuff with us while we were visiting. Once he went to the doc, we didn't see him for a couple of days though. His flu didn't seem all that severe. He had gotten the flu shot, and he seems like a generally considerate person when it comes to minimizing the spreading of germs.

We went to one of Ruby's friend's houses to play some VR games. Ruby didn't play because she didn't want to contaminate people by putting on the headgear and everything... She just sat with an entire roll of toilet paper provided by the person living there. They had a conversation about how they had been sick recently and their girlfriend got them every cold medicine in existence, so they set them all out on the counter and told Ruby to help herself if she needed any. Luckily Ruby is generally pretty good about keeping her germs to herself lol. Mushu is not at all. Our grandmother came over that night, and Ruby is annoyingly "natural" about her approach to healthcare lol. She refused to just have some of the actual, symptom minimizing medicine. Until I ranted to her to just take the medicine for our grandmother's sake, even if she didn't believe it would make her better any faster. I was super worried... our grandma had a heart attack and is not as strong anymore... So I was so worried that Ruby, who was more sick than Mushu at the time, would get her sick... Unrelated, but I used to live with my grandma, and she means a lot to me, so Ruby sneezing and coughing while we're all sitting around the living room and refusing to take some meds made me totally worried haha. She did eventually have medicine (and decreased symptoms) after I texted her and explained why I was worried. 

Mushu was still just coughing pretty regularly, but light like "throat is tickling" coughs. I suspected that she was getting sick too, but she also has allergies and asthma, so I thought maybe it was due to that. Mushu and I shared a bed, and that night she was like "maybe Ruby got me sick, I'm kind of mehhhh." She coughed a lot during the night, and it started getting progressively more congested. The next morning, I got up early and got ready for the day and stuff. When I returned to our room, Mushu said "I'm dyingggg" in typical exaggerated fashion hahah. I was like really? oh noooo! And told her what meds I thought we had and how we were gonna all go out to eat but wasn't sure if she wanted to come. She talked about her symptoms, how her body was just achy and sore and she didn't think she would come out to eat. This was our last day on vacation before we would fly on the plane the next day. She went to shower (coughed a ton in the bathroom), and after showering, she said she felt a bit better and would come to the restaurant with us. A friend of Ruby's had just gotten into town and was staying with us that night. She was going to nursing school in the area. My sister warned her that the household was sick, and she sarcastically was like "I got my flu shot this year, so you can sneeze all over me!" um. Ugh. Tho she went on to explain how the flu shot this year wasn't actually very effective but apparently lessened the severity. Ruby's bf had gotten his flu shot, but every nurse he worked with had gotten the flu and eventually passed it on to him. 

So anyway, we get in the car to go to the restaurant... I'm sitting next to Mushu. She sneezed into her elbow, the end congested and phlegmy. Everyone just kind of winced, sister blessed her and Mushu was like "ahh....that sounded...healthy..." Sarcastically. We planned to sit outside at the restaurant (it was super nice out), but the sun was too bright, so we sat inside. Getting back in the car for the drive home, I was hyper aware of touching everything that Mushu had also touched. I got in the car first this time, so we had swapped seats, still sitting next to each other. She sneezed again on the way home. 

When we got home, my sister and her friend left so her friend could be shown around town and see her new campus. So, it was just me and Mushu. She was coughing constantly, usually either into her elbow or cupped hands. She started sneezing more and more frequently. We were sitting on the bed, chatting about whether or not she felt up to doing anything that day since it was our last day. She sneezed 3 times, barely covered since it was just me and her in our room. Her sneezes are pretty rough, by the way. Kind of like "heh-RRSHHUH!" with the first part being vocal, and the latter super congested because of her sickness. I told her about the medicine and stuff, but she's like the "tough guy" who wants to make it through without medicine... I got a thermometer so she could check her temp, and she had a fever, though nothing too high. Still next to each other on the bed, she sneezed 3 times uncovered while feeling around the sheets trying to find her tissue. We went out and sat on the couch and watched TV for a while. I was sitting on one end while she was laying down on the other end, facing me. She sneezed 3 times again into cupped hands. She asked if we had any hand sanitizer cus she felt like she was covering everything with germs. She held her hands out as if to show me haha... She was browsing her phone and kept handing it to me so I could read funny pictures / memes that she had found. 

Soon, she went back to our room and rested for a while. When I went in to get ready for bed, we talked about how awful it was going to be for her to fly while super sick. I kind of tried to suggest that she should wear one of those surgical masks, presenting it sarcastically, but hoping she would take it seriously. Not that we had any of those on hand, but I'm sure we could've picked some up at a drugstore or something. She was just like "oh man, I really should, hahahaha." She sneezed another 3 times into our bedsheets. We both brag about our "immune systems of steel," and this was the second time she had been sick this season. So I was like haaaah man it's been 3 years since I've gotten sick. And she was explaining how she was sure she'd be better super fast and just flying on the plane was gonna suck. I was like, yeah, I honestly don't even care if I get sick, as long as I'm not as sick as you are on the plane, that would be awful. 

She coughed like allll night. I just felt like I was constantly breathing germs hahaha... I was like so paranoid. I couldn't sleep at all. And obviously she was hardly sleeping, too. She probably sneezed a few times every hour throughout the entire night. Everything was totally uncovered since she was half asleep. I got coughed and sneezed on multiple times and just kept pretending to be asleep. I tried to stay still so I wouldn't wake her up or anything, but I was getting stiff from sleeping on the same side, faced away from her, so I rolled onto my other side and faced her eventually. I noticed her crumpled tissue stuffed between our pillows, and shortly after I had turned to face her, she sneezed her typical triplet... thankfully she wasn't directly facing me, but was lying on her back, so I still felt mist like settling. UGH. 

On the way to the airport, she sneezed twice in the car. Everyone asked how she was, and she said she was pretty much as bad as yesterday, still achy and sore and feverish. We were walking toward our gate and she was sneezing repeatedly, trying to fish a tissue out of her pocket. In between sneezes she was like "ahhh I can't get my tissue, I'm contaminating everyone!!" sneezing toward the restaurants that we walked past... I was kind of like...haha... but this whole flight freaked me out lol. The kind of scenario you would read in a contagion fanfic. Not the kind of thing someone wants to see in real life... I boarded the plane before her, and I could hear her sneezing as she was getting on. We watched shows on her phone, and she seemed to generally try to hold back her coughing. She sneezed 3 times again, passing me her phone so she could try to find her tissue. She always seemed to sneeze in triplets, which she does sometimes even when she's not sick, but usually not as many. She wasn't trying to hide that she was sick or anything, she was like "man I'm going to get everyone on this plane sick" after one of her typical set of 3 sneezes.


Anyway. That's about it. Gah. I was super paranoid and positive I would get sick like every day for a week. I was like "is my throat slightly sore? Am I more tired than usual?????" hahaha. But I didn't get sick somehow. In the moment, I was just like... dreading and grossed out, but trying to be helpful and get water / make food / whatever was needed from me. I kinda figured I would never write obs about this cus it was just a bad time hahaha. But now that I've survived, didn't get sick, and it's in the past, it feels distant, so here it is... So when people are ranting about the severity of this year's flu season, blame my friend. D: I never want to return to this post and relive this. I feel like since I didn't end up getting sick, it's less repulsive in retrospect. I'm really not a germaphobe at all, but during this experience, I was totally paranoid about getting sick, and so tense since I couldn't sleep or like think about anything else lol. But it all turned out fine. Grandma didn't get sick by the way. 

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  • 3 months later...

I would be nervous about getting sick too, but I think I’d enjoy it for the most part. It really does sound like a contagion fic, thanks for sharing!

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