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Surviving the flu really makes you appreciate being healthy

You can't put a price tag on memories, they're priceless for a reason
Tyson’s Thoughts is a column posted online at and in print on Wednesday’s. Have some thoughts about my thoughts? Email

I survived a brutal bout with the flu last week, and I have to say it's really made me feel grateful that I'm normally a healthy human being who's in physically good shape.

If you're wondering how I ended up getting sick, I'm fairly sure I caught the virus while attending weekend grad festivities at Port Hardy Secondary School. It took a couple of days for the effects to begin to sink in, because I only started to seriously feel "under the weather" by Tuesday afternoon.

Symptoms were as such: Brutal headache, high fever, body chills, cold sweats, daggers in my throat; it was not a pleasant experience, to say the least. It was so excruciating I couldn't fall sleep at all Tuesday night because my head was in so much agony. 

I spent all day Wednesday delirious with a fever as I lay in bed unable to watch tv, hoping and praying for the cold meds to finally kick in and alleviate my woes.

Thursday was more of the same. I spent it delirious with a fever, unable to sleep or watch tv, headache throbbing inside my temples. Even worse, Thursday was my 40th birthday, so I missed out on getting to celebrate the day with my family and friends (more on my birthday later).

When Friday rolled around, I had to drag myself into the Gazette office and design the newspaper, because thanks to Canada Day, we had an early press deadline. I looked and felt like death incarnate, but I still somehow managed to get the job done despite all the added adversity. 

As soon as I finished the newspaper I went back home to bed and collapsed. I felt disgustingly weak as I hadn't been able to eat anything since Monday evening and was subsisting off bottles of Gatorade and Powerade, which it turns out is a pretty good diet. I think I lost maybe five pounds total. 

Back to my weekend, I started to feel a little better on Saturday morning, enough so that I was able to watch a bit of tv here and there and get some actual non-NyQuil induced sleep.

I still felt like a zombie, but I knew I was beginning to mend. Sunday I was able to get out of bed and make it to my couch, which is where I stayed for most of the day watching Youtube videos before I ended up cooking myself a nice bowl of Campbell's chicken noodle soup for lunch to break my flu-induced fast. 

When Canada Day rolled around on Monday, I managed to get myself dressed and head down to Carrot Park to take some photographs. I still felt like crap, but I was back among the living again and I knew I was ready to go back to the office on Tuesday.

Which is where I sit now, typing away, happy and fortunate that I'm alive again and relatively healthy. I still have a bit of a cough and sinus issue, but nothing that won't go away in a few days.

As for celebrating my birthday, I went over to my parents house on Sunday evening and had dinner with them. Both my parents and my brother had all been sick recently so they weren't worried about catching the virus (come to think of it, maybe they were the ones who gave it to me in the first place) and we had a good time hanging out together and talking about life.

My mom asked me how it feels to be 40 and I just shrugged and said it hurts a little bit more to get out of bed in the morning, but that's about the only real difference.

On the other hand, I have found the older I get the more I see the true value of things, especially when it comes to getting to spend time my folks and hangout with my brother.

I guess the old saying really is true. You can't put a price tag on memories, they're priceless for a reason.

Tyson Whitney is an award-winning journalist who was born and raised in Port Hardy. His family has lived in Port Hardy for more than 40 years. He graduated with a degree in writing from Vancouver Island University in 2008. Email:

Tyson Whitney

About the Author: Tyson Whitney

I have been working in the community newspaper business for nearly a decade, all of those years with Black Press Media.
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