I have reached that point in my life where my body has started playing tricks on me.
Sunday morning, I had another episode in which my sinuses reared back and attacked me -- again.
It has gotten to the point where I carry generic, store-brand, sinus medicine with me all the time.
I only use it as a last resort, when my regular Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen doesn't work, or doesn't get rid of all the pain.
But I woke up extremely congested, with my head throbbing and my sinuses gurgling and draining as I sat up, which usually signals the start of a not-so-good day.
I rolled out of bed and gingerly shuffled to the bathroom. I took two pills and waited a few minutes, but did not experience any relief. In fact, it got worse. When my sinuses flare up really badly, my stomach gets so queasy I lose my appetite and can't eat.
I can't even drink my morning coffee. And for me, that's really sick. My husband knows when I'm off my coffee, I must really be ailing.
Anyway, I got tired of dragging my sorry carcass around, so I took out the "big guns" and downed two sinus tablets. I waited a few minutes and began to feel better, like I knew I would. The downside is that they make me drowsy. I have a low tolerance to that type of medicine, and even the non-drowsy formula makes me groggy.
I try not to take them during the day, or when I know I'll be operating a motor vehicle, unless I feel I have no choice. I soon felt so good, my appetite returned around lunchtime, and I enjoyed a little chili and some potato chips, something I couldn't even contemplate earlier without feeling nauseated, with my churning stomach.
But sure enough, I started feeling drowsy soon after, and it wasn't because I went to bed late the night before.
I toughed it out and the feeling passed, and I was able to resume my normal activities, which for the weekend involves laundry, grocery shopping and errands. I swear to myself, one day when I have the time, I will catch up on yard work, but that day hasn't gotten here yet. I made it through most of the day, until around mid-afternoon when I felt that old familiar, unwelcome tickle start up again right between my eyes.
I didn't wait around this time, but immediately took two more tablets. My thought process was, "What the heck, I'll go for broke. I'm done driving for the rest of the day." The medicine faithfully kicked in, and I floated through the rest of the day feeling fine. I felt no pain, and was able to enjoy roast and salad for dinner.
I didn't used to have sinus issues. I guess I must have some kind of allergy -- dust, pollen, ragweed or whatever -- that triggers it without warning. It's not just during the spring, it's any time during the year, seemingly without rhyme or reason.
I envy those that don't have allergies, and those who never had any sinus problems. At any rate, I don't have time to ponder endlessly why the darn things act up. I just make sure to have enough medicine on hand, secure in the knowledge that if I can make it through a sinus attack, slugging back a couple of those wonderful little pills, at least assures me of a good night's sleep.
Valerie Baldowski covers government and politics for the Henry Daily Herald. She can be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.