Articles, Blog

Carol Hewart – My flu story

November 11, 2019

I thought I was dying I could have
quite easily died at home because I didn’t realise how seriously ill I was. My flu story started in end of August
this year when a colleague of mine came into A&E who was acutely unwell. As part of any managers role and as a part of a senior nursing role, I went down to the department to see how he was doing. I didn’t get very close to him but
obviously I was just checking that he was okay and that he was being well
looked after. A few days later I started developing a bit of a sore throat and
felt quite unwell. I was at home and I thought okay I’m going to come down with a bit of a cold. Take some paracetamol, a bit of fluids to try and sort of get through it. I wasn’t on for a couple of days so that’ll be fine, I’ll just get over the initial part of it. I started having hot flushes started
aching a bit and I thought well maybe it’s gonna be a little bit more but not
to worry too much so just try get upstairs with lots of fluids. I woke up basically three days later. I was waking up in between but not really conscious of what I was doing. I was just seeing if it is six hours since I last took any
paracetamol, yeah it is right take some paracetamols, drink fluids and back to sleep again. I was quite amazed that actually it was
three days later, before I realised actually that I’d been so
unwell. I still wasn’t well, but basically I had to get out of bed to go and get some more fluids and get some more paracetamol. I was having cramps, I struggled downstairs. My poor cat hadn’t been fed for three days. Luckily she was able to help herself to food. She was quite happy thank you very much and then it took me And then it took me two and a half hours to climb back upstairs again with the fluids etc. I said when I rang my family and said look
guys you need to come down, I’m not very well but be very conscious that I think I’ve got this flu. I spent another three days in bed still not eating and only managing to keep any fluids down. I finally managed to struggle into
the bathroom to have a bath. My daughter had to help me
out of bath because I was so weak and washed out. I spent a further week in bed still not able to sort of function. Achy, headaches etc but at least this all the sweats stopped. I always thought I’d had the flu before. But no I have not had flu
before. This totally wiped me out totally interrupted my functioning. I didn’t
sound like me my family rang and they thought it was a
man answering the phone. I couldn’t function, I couldn’t think, I felt really depressed. I was washed out and I am still overcoming that now several months
later. I was not a full advocate of the flu jab I have to say. I understood the rationale behind it but I wasn’t the most adamant person to get it should I say. I think is that it doesn’t just affect you,
you do not have to get close to people to catch this condition. Like I said I didn’t get very close to my colleague and I was really seriously
ill. I thought I was dying, I could have quite easily died at home because I
didn’t realise how seriously ill I was. It had a fundamental effect on my
colleagues because I wasn’t available to work and obviously being a
senior nurse it’s not somebody that can just quickly jump into my role so it had a
significant impact on my colleagues as well.

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