Judgement in Every Drop

27 01 2012

So, anyone who’s been reading my recent posts on this site knows that I’ve been sick this week.  Really sick.  I thought that I’ve had a really bad cold, but now that I’m starting to finally feel better, I’m ready to admit that I most likely had the flu.  Ugh.  It knocked me out.  I’ve been the kind of sick that when I stand up, I realize that was maybe a mistake and I should just go lay back down.  I’m way better now, of course…but still feelin’ it.

I’m a huge fan of Ricola lozenges.  They are awesome.  But because of my congestion, I also got some Halls.  Halls are like my old standby.  They are comforting.  That’s what my parents used when I was growing up.  Ricola was something I found later–my coming of age cough drop.

Halls has done something new with their packaging.  Have any of you seen it?  On the outside of every drop’s wrapper, they have little sayings–“A Pep Talk In Every Drop!” they’re calling it.  Here are some of the phrases I’ve seen:

Go get it!

Dust off and get up.   

Get back in there.

Flex your “can do” muscle.

Impress yourself today.

Buckle down and push forth!

Now, I don’t know about you, dear reader.  But when I am the kind of sick where I can’t breathe through my nose, I’m headachey, and it’s exhausting just to make myself a bowl of oatmeal, I don’t want some pushy cough drop wrapper telling me to “push forth!’  Screw you, cough drop wrapper!  How can you come off all high and mighty?!  You don’t know how I feel!  Stop tellin’ me that all I need to do is just “get back in there!’  Geez.  The nerve.  Maybe my “can do” muscle needs a rest.  Did you ever stop to think about that?!  No?  I didn’t think so.

Maybe you should reconsider your campaign, Halls.  And I’ll help you.  (Contact me via the email address on this website to find out where you can send my check.)  Here are the types of things that should be written on cough drop packages:

Be easy on yourself.

Don’t feel well?  Stay home and watch a movie!

Take a break.

You look really cute under that blanket.

Close your eyes and relax.

Embrace your bed!

See, Halls?  It’s not that difficult.  Less judgement, more validation.  That’s what we all want–especially when we’re not feeling well.

open letter to the drugs I just took

25 01 2012

Dear Sleepy-Type Cold Medicine,

I just took you, so you’ll pardon the formality of this letter, since we’re already more intimate than I make us out to be.  But I wanted to ask you a favor.  The begging of favors requires politeness and politeness requires a nice letter.  You know how it is.

I’m not much of a drug person.  (Sorry.  No offense.  But I should be honest.  I almost didn’t take you home with me today.  Goodness, this is no way to get on your good side, is it?  Well, please bear with me a moment more…)  You see, a little goes a long way (with drug-type things, that is), so I don’t often need much.

However, this awful cold I have has been torturing me for the last few days.  Last night, I tossed and turned and got barely enough sleep to get me through the day.  So, of course, I turned to you.

Your generic label, your “mixed berry” flavoring, your anti-histamine prowess, your promises of sound sleeps and cough respites……  Well, what girl couldn’t resist!  You had me at “marked drowsiness may occur.”  Ah, the sweet song of the siren!  When I got you home and ripped off your protective seal, I noticed a little something on your back that I hadn’t seen at the drugstore.  There it was, in black and white:

May cause excitability–especially in children.

Oh, no!  Dreadful warning!  I’ve been down that road before, handsome stranger.  And it wasn’t pretty.  So this brings us to that favor I was mentioning earlier on.  Oh, sweet prince, please be gracious and merciful and grant me drowsiness with absolutely no excitability whatsoever!  I beseech thee!

It is getting late, so I shall spare you any more of my verbosity.  Besides, it’s been an hour since I had you and frankly, this laptop is starting to behave like heavy machinery.

I’d like to thank you in advance for being kind.



PS:  Don’t take this the wrong way, but you didn’t taste anything like mixed berries.  I hope this was your one and only deception.

May cause excitability…

18 11 2009

I love sleep.  I am a good sleeper.  Well okay, I am not one of those people that can fall asleep anywhere or anytime.  In fact, in that regard, I’m probably considered a picky sleeper.  It has to be dark and it has to be quiet.   I don’t do night-lights.  I don’t do tick-tocking clocks.  I love those dark curtains in hotel rooms.  I love absolute silence.

I haven’t slept all that well the last few evenings.  This fact, coupled with having a very stuffy nose last night, urged me to take some cold medicine.  It was just some over-the-counter-stuff–you know, the kind that will make one pleasantly drowsy.  I should mention here that with both alcohol and drugs, a little goes a long way with me.  So typically when I take cold-medicine, I forgo the two capsule recommended dosage and just take one.  But last night was different.  I don’t know what brought on the devil-may-care attitude.  Maybe it was my comfy, fuzzy Kermit pants.  Maybe it was the noisy neighbors across the way.  Or perhaps it was just the lateness of the hour.  Whatever it was, it was sufficient enough for me to “go wild” and take the recommended two Alka-Seltzer nighttime cold capsules.

At first, nothing out of the ordinary happened.  I took my turn on a couple of Scrabble games on facebook, spread my quilt upon my bed, and contently settled in for the expected restful night of sleep.  And I did sleep.  For a little bit.  Then, my sleepy train curved around the bend and entered Freaky-ville.  I woke up instantly out of dream sensing that something was wrong.  My legs were upset.  “It must be my blanket,” I thought.  So I sat up and took off the quilt.  While I was sitting up, it occurred to me that the idea of upset legs was silly, so I returned my quilt and laid back down.  But my legs were still perturbed.  I’m not sure how else to describe it.  They wanted to do something–anything–as long as they didn’t have to just lie there.  But my head had other plans.  The top half of me was super drowsy.  But the bottom half?  My bottom half wanted to laugh and jump and pretend to be popcorn on a trampoline.  My legs wanted to be unscrewed from my kill-joy body so that they could do cartwheels in a field of sand, pebbles, or those squishy stress-balls.  My arms wanted to see how far they could stretch between wrist and shoulder.  Across the street?  Around the building?  Up to the sky?  I remember repeating the cycle of “my legs do not like this blanket,” remove blanket, “that was nonsensical,” return blanket, lie back down, “my legs do not like this blanket,”…and so on for a considerable amount of time.  I also remember trying to massage and stretch my legs (and my arms for the times they seemed fairly vexed).  I even got up and walked around.  But my top half was so tired.  Both sides resented each other.

I don’t recall when or how I was able to finally quiet my legs.  But I woke up around 11:00 this morning with my Kermit pants missing, the closet light on, and confusion of how the sun the could rise in the west.  I had an abundant supply of mucous (much more than before) and only a vague recollection of what happened over the course of night.  I went to my medicine cabinet and pulled out the Alka-Seltzer box, covered in warnings and directions to make sure I hadn’t taken too much.  I hadn’t.  “May cause excitability, especially in children” looked back at me.

When I hear the word “excitable,” I think of emotional excitability.  It seems like an innocuous (and subjective) symptom to have.  But physiological excitability is something else all together.  And it’s not nearly as enjoyable.

PS:  Alka-Seltzer, give me back my pants.