Last Sunday, I started to notice a little tickle at the back of my throat. My voice had been hoarse since Saturday afternoon, and I chalked it up all the singing I'd done at that morning's services. But when my voice got worse instead of better, and I began coughing more, I knew I was coming down with something. Still, I rode to my lesson on Tuesday, then rode home and went out that evening with Sweetie. By the time we got to our destination, I was feeling pretty awful. I knew I had some kind of Creeping Crud and that it was going to have to run its course.
The Crud progressed over the next several days, forcing me to stay indoors Wednesday through Saturday. I drank hot tea, had a lot of soup, sucked on throat lozenges like they were candy, and alternated between napping and surfing the web. I couldn't practice music for an upcoming gig because my voice was nearly gone. I told myself that resting for now would make it possible for me to sing in less than two weeks.
All that time, I stared at my bike parked in the entryway, and sighed.
Riding has been part of my stress and depression management plan for awhile now. Not being able to ride was harder than I thought it would be. But in the end, it was the wise choice. If I was going to avoid antibiotics and simply let this thing run its course, I would have to give my body time to rest and recover. There was no way around it.
And it has made a difference. Yesterday, a week after first getting sick, I felt well enough to ride my bike to the store. In fact, I felt well enough to ride all the way to Velo Cult and then take a long loop home, stopping at the store on the way. Today I am still coughing (though my coughs are, um, more productive than they were last week) but my throat doesn't hurt nearly as much. My energy is returning. My voice has returned enough that I will gently run through some music today, for a gig next weekend.
Sometimes, the body tells me that I need to listen. And rest. And just take a break.