I woke up last night around 1am, and I was freezing. My calf muscle ached from subconsciously rubbing my feet together all night. It was like I had been running a marathon in my sleep, causing one of my socks to slide off.
At first, given my chill, I thought our furnace had broken. But as I glided further into reality, I became aware of the burning sensation around my eyes. I realized I had a fever.
I got up and blindly dug another sock out of my dresser. It didn’t match the one I was already wearing, but I didn’t care.
I quickly stumbled back into bed, doubled my blanket cover and curled into the fetal position, shivering. I laid like that for several hours, clutching the covers in an attempt to find some comfort.
Surely, you’ve had a fever before and remember the experience.
Your entire body becomes fatigued. You feel as if your joints have rusted, and your hands are too weak even to form a simple fist.
You break into a cold sweat. Your temperature rises to fight the attack on your immune system. The heat dries your throat and mouth, but chills the air.
Your body becomes a feeble capsule, housing an internal battle between your white blood cells and the pathogen. It leaves you mentally and physically weary, unable to do little more than drift in and out of incoherent dreams.
That is how I felt at 1 am, when I awoke.
That is how I felt at 7 a.m, when the haze of bleary subconsciousness finally dispersed.
That is how I felt at 10 a.m., when I rolled out of bed and dressed for a weekend video gig.
And it is how I continued to feel for the next 24 hours.
The common cold and a simple fever. It’s amazing how something so basic can knock a person out.