Scene: 14 year old during Christmas vacation with Hong Kong Flu. Temperature: almost 105. No voice. Strep throat which made it painful to swallow. Dizzy and passed out a few times upon standing. This all meant I was SICK and not able to run around like everyone else! This also meant I was avoided like I had the plague. Being sick is bad enough, but being sick in isolation really sucks.
I took the usual over the counter medicines people took when they had the flu plus I had to take antibiotics for my strep throat so it wouldn't linger and cause heart damage. My mother who is a nurse was instructed by my family doctor to paint my throat with this awful looking brown stuff. (She just told me it was iodine) She had me sit at the kitchen table and instructed me not to swallow any of it because it was poison.
WTF? Did I hear that right? How am I supposed to tell you if I swallowed any if I can't talk? Wait a minute! I've got it! I'll just kick you in the shins if you poison me!
I finally started to feel better the weekend before school started back. Why I pushed it to get back to school is beyond me, but probably had to do with feeling so isolated while I was sick. I walked to school Monday morning. The bitter cold had finally dissipated, so the 10 minute walk to school was bearable. By Monday afternoon, the school nurse called my mother to inform her I was sick again. The walk home wore me out so I went directly to bed when I got there. I had a relapse and had developed pneumonia according to my doctor. I was out of school for almost a month. Ordinarily I would have enjoyed being out of school, but not under those conditions.
I was back to my good old self by concert time in February. That's what mattered most to me! After the concert, a few friends and I went riding around. Most of the neighborhood gang were older than me, but never treated me like the baby of the group. Somehow I just fit in and was part of the gang. Because Jimmy was one of those people going for a ride and I had a wicked crush on him, I would have moved a mountain in order to go along. Luckily, I didn't have to do anything that strenuous! The vehicle was a truck so most of us had to sit in the back. Of course you know, I was one of the ones in the back as we sped through the crisp winter air. Isn't it nice to be young and invincible? If I had a brain then I probably would have been dangerous!