Here’s Something I Like (Not that Anyone Asked): NyQuil

Hi, I’m Mary, and this is my column no one asked for about things I like!

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This is my face

For the past three weeks, I’ve been fighting bronchitis, which I’ve learned is just a sophisticated name for the kind of chest cold that makes you feel like your esophagus is splitting open every time you cough. It has, to be blunt, totally fucking sucked, and I’m just now starting to get my voice and my lung capacity back. Still, it hasn’t been all bad. All that coughing has been brutal on my throat but toned my abs. It’s also given me a good excuse to take it easy, which isn’t one of my strengths. Most importantly, it’s allowed me to use my favorite drug: NyQuil.

Granted I haven’t tried many drugs, but I can’t imagine heroin is all that much better than NyQuil. One little sip of that sickly sweet syrup is all it takes for me to start feeling good — real good. As soon as it starts to kick in, there’s a brief moment when my head gets all fuzzy and I wonder if Tiger Woods was onto something with all that fucking on Ambien. When I’m ‘Quilling, my limbs get all heavy and yet I feel as weightless as if I were floating on the Dead Sea, about to drown in an endless pool of salty cough-free bliss. As I write this, it’s 10 a.m., but I’m considering taking a few swills and calling it a day.

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This is my face on NyQuil

I never sleep better than when I’m on NyQuil. And yes, when I’m under the influence I’m definitely on NyQuil. I’m a user, not a taker. I love NyQuil so much that every time I start to get sick, a little part of me gets excited because I know I’m about to sleep like a babyLike any addict, however, there comes a time in my illness when I have to cut myself off. I normally use NyQuil one night longer than I need to, but this time I’m proud to announce I stopped ‘Quilling earlier than I could have. I found that, while it helped with my cough and made me feel like I was made of cotton candy, NyQuil wasn’t as essential for my chest cold as it is for my chronic sinus infections.

Oh yeah — not to brag, but I get a lot of sinus infections. I started getting them in college, when my seasonal allergies kicked in. The spring of my freshman year of college, I had a sinus infection for a month before realizing what was wrong. It was during finals and, unable to exercise without feeling like my head was going to explode, I instead managed my stress with saltines slathered in peanut butter. By the time I left school for the summer, I had put on a few pounds and discovered the magical powers of antibiotics — and of drugging oneself with NyQuil.

I got sick so frequently in college (I hadn’t yet realized that I had allergies) that my friends became well-acquainted with my NyQuil habit. My friend Lauren would wander into my room, take one look at me and say, “You ‘Quillin?” I usually was. Back in those days, I would sometimes take NyQuil early in the night, then watch TV with my friends while getting increasingly loopy. Does that make me sound like a drug addict? If so, sick!

The worst part of getting sinus infections back then was that I also got chronic bloody noses. Especially if I was sick and blowing my nose a lot, I’d often have to run out of class or dart from social situations to go plug up my bleeding nose. I got a lot of weird looks from women in bathrooms, who likely assumed I had blood dripping out of my nose because I’d just put something up it, which I didn’t necessarily mind because I figured if those women thought I was doing cocaine, I must look thin!

In fact I’ve never snorted a thing in my life and can’t imagine I ever will, but by my senior year of college, my bloody noses had become such a problem that I went to see a doctor about it. He looked up my nose and immediately spotted the problem: a blood vessel in my right nostril that kept bursting. He said he could easily take care of right then in there, that all he had to do was quickly cauterize the blood vessel. It took only a few minutes, and as I left he gave me a lubricant astronauts used to keep their nostrils moisturized and assured me bloody noses were a thing of my past. What he didn’t tell me was that my entire head was going to hurt like hell for two full weeks.

The pain was agonizing, but I’ve never gotten another bloody nose. During the colder months, the scar in my nose always starts to ache a little, and it’s started bothering me this last week. Sometimes I shove Neosporin up it and, when it gets really bad, I use the astronaut lubricant, which I still have even though it expired years ago.

Though it’s uncomfortable, I think of my nose pain as my own personal indicator that the seasons are changing. Some people’s joints ache when it’s about to rain — my nose aches when it’s about to get really fucking cold. It’s also a sign that cold and flu season has arrived, that if I’m lucky I’ll avoid it, and if I’m really lucky I’ll get just sick enough to have an excuse to take NyQuil for a few nights(/weeks). Hey, I know it’s a drug, but it’s my drug. I eat healthy, I exercise, I barely drink. My one vice is NyQuil — and I don’t plan on quitting ‘Quilling anytime soon.

As always, I’d like to clarify that this is NOT a sponsored post. I received nothing for it and am pretty sure no one cares that I love NyQuil. Still, if anyone is reading and ever wants to give me literally anything for free, cough syrup or not, I WILL TAKE IT!!!!!!

Anyway, I hope this was helpful. I’ll be back with more unsolicited recommendations soon!

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