I realize that no one really wants to hear how you are feeling despite the automatic, "How are you feeling" greetings you get when they walk by your office and you sound as if you are trying to cough up a major internal organ. What they really want to ask is, "Are you infectious and why don't you go lock yourself in a sound proof room where you won't disgust and annoy the rest of us."
I know this because this is what I normally think when I ask someone how they feel. Now that I'm the disgusting coughing one hacking up phlegm and killing forest after forest worth of tissues, I realize karma is a major bitch. I also realize that medical science has not progressed much from the days of bleeding and applying leeches.
After more than two weeks of coughing, wheezing and making sounds that kept conjuring up the phrase "death rattle" in my disease obsessed brain, I gave in and made a doctor's appointment. There are far too many things I'd rather do than go to the doctor than I could list in a thousand blog posts. But you can only put up with the disgusted looks and comments of sympathetic coworkers and family members who suggest you go to a doctor or float off on an ice flow before you break down and visit the doctor.
I wasn't optimistic that the doctor could or would do anything to help. After keeping me waiting the prerequisite 20 minutes in the exam room she came in and immediately asked, "How are you feeling" which has an even worse translation when coming from a doctor. It essential means, "How long do I have to listen to you whine before I can simply bill my $200 and send you on your way to let what ever crude you'd come down with runs its course."
The doctor did immediately decline shaking my hand and kept a good six feet between me and her. She listened to my symptoms and reluctantly said, "Let's take a look" as she donned rubber gloves and picked up her instruments to peek into my ears and nose and listen to my lungs. She proceeded to check and inform me I had post nasal drip and a bad cough.
My four year old had made this diagnosis days earlier without the benefit of medical school.
She then told me that it was probably started out as a viral thing and may have turned into an infection. So she gave me a prescription for some antibiotics with the caveat that they may or may not help and an inhaler that might help the cough. Then she told me to come back in a week or so if things didn't get better. I walked out shaking my head at my gullibility for once again going to a doctor assuming they were actually going to offer up a cure rather than a guess.
Regardless, I have been taking my pills and breathing my inhaler and I have to say I really don't feel much better. But when people make some comment about my hacking and sniffling, I can confidently say that I've been to a doctor. They seem relieved since this indicates that I must not be contagious.
Then when they are away from their desks, I go and lick their telephone receivers.